Advanced Blackjack Rules: Dealer's Play, Doubling Down, Split, Double after Split, Surrender and Insurance Bet.

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How to Master Blackjack:

Once you master basic rules of the game, you should learn specific blackjack rules that are applied in most casinos. Advanced Blackjack Rules is a set of regulations optionally used in most casinos and card rooms. If you are not familiar with the basic rules of the game, visit Basic Blackjack Rules at our site.

Dealer's Play

Blackjack dealers at casinos are given basic playing options as well as all players at the table, but they never decide which action to take. They follow the scheme specified by the house and do not take any personal decisions. They MUST follow this scheme, and if a certain dealer breaks the rules, the players can demand to replay the game.

There are two main formats of dealer's play: Hit Soft 17 and Stand at Soft 17. Both formats oblige the dealer to Hit as long as his total number is lower than 17 and to Stand if it is equal or higher than 17, regardless of the hands of the players. The difference between these formats has to do only with Soft 17, a hand that has 17 points and contains an Ace. Hit Soft 17 rule obliges the dealer to hit with such a hand, while Stand at Soft 17 obliges him to stand.

Doubling Down

An optional action called Double Down, allows blackjack players to double their initial bet at a certain stage of the game. However, if a player decides to take this option, he must take exactly one more card and stand. So, after Double Down the player can not take any more cards.


If two initial cards of a player match, the player can decide to split his hand. Splitting means dividing the hand into two separate hands and placing an additional bet for the new hand. These two hands are played separately, and do not affect each other in any manner, so a player can lose one of his hands and win another one.

Double after Split

Some casinos may allow doubling down for one or both of split hands, while other prohibit such action.


Surrender is an option that allows a player to leave the game at a certain stage forfeiting only half of his bet. Unfortunately, Surrender is allowed at very few casinos.

Insurance Bet

Some casinos also allow a player to place a side bet called Insurance Bet. Insurance Bet is only allowed if the up-card of the dealer is an Ace and is paid 2:1 if the dealer has a Blackjack, viz. his down-card has ten points.


A tie is a situation when the dealer and the player have the same number of points. An exception here is a Blackjack. Blackjack beats a hand that contains 21 points, but is formed by three cards or more. Ties can be treated differently, but in most casinos Ties neither win nor lose for anyone. The player simply takes his bet back or leaves it on the table for the next game.

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