Other than luck, the game of blackjack also relies on your strategy. If you want to boost your winning potential, you need to polish up on blackjack strategies. Winning in blackjack can often require you to know when it’s the right time to double down. While doubling down is a great strategy, many players don’t understand how to leverage it to boost their winnings.
The blackjack strategy of double down requires you to double your bet by matching the ante bet in the middle of the hand — in return for an extra card. It’s risky, but with the right timing, it can increase your payout. When you have the upper hand against the dealer, you should double down. When doubling down, you increase the value of the initial bet by 100%, which boosts your winnings if you win. Doubling down is a vote of confidence in your hand.
The main goal of blackjack is to beat the dealer’s hand. When dealt the first two rounds, you must determine whether there’s a statistical advantage to double down. Some hands are better to take advantage of in blackjack, including:
When you are ready to double down in blackjack, add a stack of chips next to your initial chips. The stack should have an equal value to your initial bet. If you push the extra chips on the betting board and it doesn’t work, you can make a hand signal to the dealer. For instance, you can point with one finger to signal that you only need one card. Do not put the chips on top of the initial wager when signalling about a double down. Doing this could be misconstrued as interfering with your initial bet.
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While doubling down is a great blackjack strategy that can increase your win potential, there are some instances when it can backfire. Some times when not to double down include:
Aside from voluntarily choosing not to double down, there are some instances when you are not allowed to use the blackjack strategy of double down. For instance, you cannot double down after splitting a hand. When splitting, you receive two cards of the same value, and you decide to split the cards into two separate hands. You can then get two new cards from the dealer. Some online casinos may allow you to double down after splitting, but most do not. You also cannot double down after hitting. You’re supposed to double down before receiving the third card from the dealer. When you pick the third card, you can no longer hit.
Before doubling down, ensure you understand the online casino’s rules. The rules of the specific blackjack variant will help you understand the best time to double down. Many casinos have strict rules regarding when you can double down. For instance, you can only double down in the instances mentioned above. If your blackjack hand has any other value, you are supposed to continue as usual. Besides paying attention to your card value, check the rules on the dealer’s value.
Most online casinos allow the dealer to hit up to 17, but in some variants, the dealer hits up to 16. This ensures the dealer has minimal chances of going over 21. When planning to use the blackjack double down strategy, check if the dealer will likely go over 21.
It is important to learn if the dealer checks for blackjack when they are dealt an ace or a ten-value card. If the dealer checks and the game continues, they don’t have a blackjack, and if you double down, you may have a good chance of winning. When the dealer has a blackjack, the hand will end there, and the dealer wins.
With the blackjack strategy of double down, you place an extra wager when you have a better chance of winning to increase your potential payout. Although you double your bet and increase your risks, the returns will be higher if you win the hand or hit blackjack. In blackjack variants that allow you to double down after splitting, you can further increase your payout if both hands reach 21. For instance, if you are dealt two cards with a value of 10 and the dealer has card values from 3 to 6, you can split the tens and double down to double your profits.
Aside from the benefits of earning an additional payout with a double wager, doubling down has many disadvantages. The main disadvantage is the possibility of losing after doubling down. For instance, if you double down on 11 and receive an ace, your hand total will be 12, and you won’t have a chance to draw additional cards. That means you will have an inferior hand while the dealer can still hit and win.
In blackjack, you always make a move before the dealer, which puts you at a disadvantage. That means the online casino has the edge over you. For instance, you can only see the value of the dealer’s card that is face up, which doesn’t give you a true picture of the total value. While the dealer’s first card could be lower, their second card could have a higher value, putting you at a disadvantage.
Blackjack games offer the lowest house edge in online casinos. However, you can boost your potential winnings by using the blackjack double down strategy. When doubling down, after the initial bet is dealt, you can choose to double your wager and receive only one additional card. When using the blackjack double down strategy, ensure you check the rules of the blackjack variant and the best instances to use the strategy. For instance, some blackjack variants only let you double down when you have a total hand of 9, 10 or 11, while other variants are flexible, and you can double down on any total.
When using the blackjack double down strategy, ensure you know the casino’s rules for the dealer. For instance, how long can a dealer hit before they are supposed to stand? If a dealer is supposed to stop taking cards at 17, you have a better chance of winning if your initial card values are high. The number of decks can also influence your chances of winning in a double down. Shoes with many decks contain more cards with values of 10, which means you can more easily land a 10 after doubling down. Knowing the best times to double down if you have a hard or soft total is important. If you have a good grasp of the blackjack double down strategy, you can significantly increase your potential payout.