Casino Strategy

A blackjack card value guide to get you started at the tables

An ability to quickly calculate the odds based on card values will help you win more at blackjack

When it comes to playing blackjack, understanding the value of each card is essential. The card values in blackjack differ from other card games, and having a clear understanding of them can significantly impact your decisions and overall strategy.

The numbered cards (2-10) hold their face value. For example, a 2 of hearts is worth two points, a 7 of diamonds is worth seven points and so on. These cards contribute directly to the total value of your hand.

Face cards, namely Jacks, Queens and Kings, are all valued at ten points each. Therefore, a Jack of spades, a Queen of hearts, and a King of clubs all contribute ten points to the total value of your hand. These cards are essential in achieving the desired hand value of 21, commonly known as blackjack.

The Ace is an interesting card in blackjack as it holds a dual value. An Ace can be counted as either one point or eleven points, depending on which value benefits the player more. For example, if you have an Ace and a 7, you can choose to count the Ace as 11, making your total hand value 18. However, if you have an Ace, a 6 and a 10, counting the Ace as 11 would result in a bust (hand value exceeding 21), so you would count it as one, making your total hand value 17.

Understanding the value of each card is crucial in making strategic decisions during the game. It helps you determine whether to hit (request another card), stand (keep your current hand value), double down (double your initial bet and receive one more card), or split (if you have two cards of the same value, splitting them into two separate hands).

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