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Blackjack Table Guide

How to not look like an idiot @ the blackjack table

Blackjack in the casino is a sociable game, where interaction with the dealer is necessary, and interaction with the other players is pretty much inevitable. Most of it will be fun of course, and the other players at the blackjack table know they aren't competing with you, so its often an us against the casino team mentality, with compliments on good play, and congratulations on blackjacks. Coming across complete idiots is of course impossible to avoid, but easy to walk away from. The worst part about being a new player at the blackjack table is when you make a small simple etiquette mistake and have to endure a light scolding from the dealer.

From the get-go, always use clear understandable hand signals, in addition to saying what you want to happen to your hand. The hand signals are required because they provide a physical record of your request on video tape. If you scratch the table for another card while saying stand, the dealer will deal you another card, and there's not much recourse.

Never ever touch your bet once the cards are dealt. The only time you should even go near it is when you're putting more money down on a double or a split, but even then, there is no need to touch it. Casinos are paranoid because those good at slight of hand have been known to slide an extra 100 dollar chip under their stack when they are in a good position to win.

In a face down game only use one hand to touch your cards, do not bend them, and be sure to keep them visible over the edge of the table. You'll be booted real quick if you dip your hand out of the dealers site for even an instant.

When placing your bet, stack your chips in one neat stack in the center of the betting circle with the largest denomination (value) at the bottom of the stack. If you want to tip the dealer place a bet for them on the edge of your betting circle, closest to the dealer. If your hand wins, the dealer keeps that bet and its winnings.

Some high rollers like to play the dealer one on one, so if you come up to a table with just one person at it, it's polite to ask if you can join them. This isn't quite so necessary at a $5 table, but it's still nice.

Feel free to keep a basic strategy card with you while you play, but don't stare at it every hand, in fact, try not to spend any time looking at it while it's actually your turn. The other folk around the blackjack table will get frustrated pretty quick. It's also always ok to ask the dealer what they would do on your hand, and they will most likely give you what basic strategy would suggest.

Think about your play before the dealer makes their way around to you. You may put out your chips for doubling or splitting before the dealer turns to you, but don't split your cards yourself, some dealers like to do that bit.

Let the dealer know if they made a mistake (yes, its possible), but don't be surprised if you're the one who missed something. Fortunately most dealers are very patient in explaining any anomaly you might have a question about, the firs time. Always count your chips to make sure you got what you expected, then after that find out if what you expected was what you should have gotten.



 
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