Blackjack Online Guide for US-PlayersCheck out our expert, honest and in-depth guide to find out how to play blackjack online.
Our In-Depth Guide to Blackjack Online
Have you ever wondered whether playing blackjack online is just as fun as it is in a casino? Are you aware of the rules of the game or how many different variations there are? Do you want to know which online casinos offer the best gaming experiences? At JustGamblers.com, we’re here to provide the answers to all those questions and more. Plus, we’re one of the leading casino review sites on the web, and each of our reviews is written by seasoned gambling experts.
On this page, you’ll find out everything you need to know about playing 21 blackjack online in the USA. We discuss the rules of the game, the bonuses you can take advantage of, which software developers create the online versions, and even how you can take a seat at a table in a real casino from the comfort of your home. We’ll also give you some money management and online blackjack tips so that you don’t waste your life savings on a game that’s supposed to be thrilling rather than debilitating.
Keep reading below to learn more about the most common payment and withdrawal methods, the history of the game, where you can play for free and real money, and which casinos you can trust with your hard-earned cash. If you decide you want to start playing blackjack, we recommend reading our casino reviews before depositing any money into an account.
Blackjack Online FAQ: Your Questions Answered
Do I Need to Download Software to Play Blackjack Online?
No. Though there are many downloadable casino platforms, you can play online blackjack at many casinos without having to download additional software. Most online casinos allow you to play blackjack directly from your web browser using a desktop or mobile device.
Do I Need to Play Blackjack Online with Real Money?
No. Most online casinos will allow you to practice blackjack without virtual/free coins. If you merely want to enjoy the thrill of the game, you don’t need to put your money on the line. However, many people would argue that there is nothing more thrilling than playing with real money, which most online casinos allow and even encourage (they are businesses after all). Fortunately, you can take part in low-stake games if you don’t want to risk too much.
Is Playing Blackjack Online Legal?
No federal law explicitly prohibits online gambling, which includes blackjack. However, most states set their own laws concerning online gambling, so if you want to play with real money, you need to verify your state’s regulations before depositing cash into an online casino account. Currently, online casinos are regulated in New Jersey and Delaware, though Pennsylvania may soon follow suit. We may also see laws laxed in states such as West Virginia and Nevada, the latter of which already allows online poker.
What Is the Legal Age Limited to Play Blackjack?
How old you need to be to gamble online (or at all) depends on where you live, but the age range is 18 to 21 across the US. New Jersey – which is currently leading the way in online casinos – has set its legal age limit to 21. You shouldn’t lie about your age to create an account because doing so will prevent you from claiming your winnings. You also need to be 21 to gamble in Delaware, Nevada, and Pennsylvania.
Are there Bonuses Available?
Yes. Most online casinos entice players to sign up with welcome bonuses and frequently hold campaigns for existing users to encourage people to keep playing. However, bonuses for Blackjack tend to be less enticing than those for slot machines because the house has a slightly better edge when it comes to taking your cash via the slots.
Do I Need to Pay Taxes on My Blackjack Winnings?
The short answer is yes, though you should check the regulations in your state to make sure. In New Jersey, where online blackjack is popular, all gambling winnings are subjected to the New Jersey Income Tax law. You should also report your losses so that you can offset your tax obligations.
Is It Possible to Play Blackjack Online with a Live Dealer?
Yes. You can play blackjack against a real person in real-time at most online casinos. Some of the best online blackjack games even feature a live video stream so that you can see who you’re against, but almost all casinos have introduced chat rooms where you can converse with other players in real-time.
How Do I Decide Which Variant of Blackjack to Play?
The most popular closely related games to Blackjack include Pontoon, Spanish 21, Super 21 and Blackjack Switch. While the goal of each game is similar, the rules and strategies of each differ. The most straightforward way to find your favorite game is to give them all a try, and you’ll find most variants here at JustGamblers.com.
Everything You Need to Know about Blackjack Online
Below, we’ll discuss everything you need to know to start playing blackjack online with confidence. We’ll tell you about the different types of online blackjack bonus available, where you can play for free, tips on how to win online blackjack and much more. First, we’ll explain the basic rules of traditional blackjack, but we’ll also delve into some of the variations of the game that are available on the web. We’ll even tell you how you can deposit money into your account and withdraw your earnings as well as point you in the right direction to legal casinos for US players.
This page is meant to be a guide only. If you want to learn more about specific casinos in the USA, you should read our reviews. We’ve been gambling online since the first online casinos started popping up, meaning you can trust us for unbiased, honest and genuinely useful advice.
How to Play Blackjack
The aim of blackjack is to use playing cards to get as close to 21 as possible and beat the dealer. Usually, blackjack is played with one deck of 52 cards, though some casinos use up to eight decks to prevent cheating. The value of your hand equals the sum of your cards, and all picture cards (jack, queen, king) have a value of ten. The ace card has a value of 11, meaning if you’re dealt a picture card (or ten) and an ace, you win the round (in most variations of the game).
The dealer deals two cards to you and two to themselves, but one of their cards will be face up. The dealer is the last person to play their hand, and the rules are as follows (you’ll be given these options first):
- Stand: you stick with the cards you have.
- Hit: you request additional cards to reach 21. Go over 21, and you lose the game.
- Double: you can double your bet and ask for just one more card.
- Split: in some games of Blackjack, you can split your cards into two hands, provided your first hand consists of two cards with a value of ten.
- Surrender: you forfeit your wager and keep the remaining half. Not all online casinos allow this.
Can Online Blackjack Dealers Cheat?
Provided you play blackjack online at a regulated online casino, you can feel confident that the dealer can’t cheat, and games can’t be rigged (though you should remember that the ‘house’ always has a slight advantage). All reputable software developers use sophisticated random number generator (RGN) software to ensure that the unpredictable outcome of cards dealt. This software also eliminates anybody’s ability to count cards (which is illegal in real casinos).
It’s also worth mentioning that your money is entirely secure when you play at any of the casinos reviewed by our experts at JustGamblers.com. We only evaluate certified, licensed and regulated online casinos that are independently verified by third-party regulators. All the casinos you’ll find here use military-grade encryption software to keep your financial account and personal details safe from hackers.
You won’t struggle to find complaints online concerning casinos always winning, but you have to remember that there’s a good chance you can lose money when gambling. Online gambling shouldn’t be considered as a way to make a living. Blackjack is all about the thrill of the game.
Accepted Deposit and Withdrawal Methods When Playing Blackjack Online
Most online casinos allow you to deposit cash into your blackjack account and withdraw your earnings via dozens of payment methods, from online bank transfers to wire transfers. Many blackjack players prefer to use PayPal given the efficiency and safety of the service. Others prefer to add money to an e-wallet and use that to deposit funds into their account. Some online casinos even accept cryptocurrencies. You can check out all the usual withdrawal and deposit methods on our core guide page.
Where You Can Play Blackjack Online
Blackjack is by far one of the most popular casino card games in the world, which means you’ll struggle to find an online casino that doesn’t offer some variation of it. Most platforms allow you to play free casino games and bet with real cash, and they offer low and high-stake games (you should only gamble with money you’re willing to lose because blackjack should be treated as a fun hobby – not a way of life).
Some of the most popular online casinos for blackjack include:
- 888 Casino
- Royal Panda
- Hard rock casino
- Virgin casino
- Party casino
- Caesars casino
- Harrahs casino
- Play MGM
- Tropicana casino
- Golden nugget casino
- Sugar house
- Resorts online casino
- Mohegan sun casino
- Borgata casino
- Ocean online casino
- Scores casino
- Mohegan Sun Casino
We highly recommend reading our in-depth reviews on each of the casinos detailed above before deciding where to play, especially if you want to play online blackjack with real money. In our guides, we describe payment and withdrawal methods, security issues, sign-up processes, licenses, certifications, available games and much more. Remember – we only review casinos that are regulated and licensed, and our experts have been playing and reviewing games at online casinos long before they exploded all over the internet.
A Brief History of Blackjack
Blackjack is fascinating because researchers and experts are still unclear as to where exactly it originated, though many people agree that the contemporary version of the game probably first appeared in French Casinos at the turn of the 18th century. The French had a game they called ‘Vingt-et-Un,’ which translates to 21. However, there is also an unconfirmed theory that some variation of blackjack may have existed back in the days of the Romans.
French colonists play a significant role in spreading the popularity of Blackjack in the USA. Throughout Europe, other card games, such as the Spanish ‘Trente-Un’ and Italian ‘Sette e Mezzo’ could have spurred the development of the French Vingt-et-Un.
It could be argued that the modern game of blackjack became immensely popular in the US during the 19th and 20th centuries, especially when blackjack counters appeared in casinos in Nevada in the 20th century. The Nevada Gaming Commission defines the rules of modern blackjack. Regardless of how blackjack originated or who is responsible for its birth, we can certainly say that today, it’s one of the most adored card games in the USA and indeed the world.
Documents You Need to Sign Up to a Casino and Enjoy Blackjack
As with any online casino game, you’ll need a few documents handy to start playing blackjack for real money. Most websites require:
- Your full name
- Phone number
- Email address
- Current location
- Social security number
You’ll also need to create a username and password, which you should never share with anyone. Be aware that some casinos may request additional documents if they struggle to prove your age or location using the details you initially provide.
Choosing the Best Version of Blackjack for You
Blackjack is an ancient game that has evolved in leaps and bounds over the centuries. While traditional blackjack remains the most popular variant of this casino card game, other variations are becoming increasingly popular, such as Spanish 21, Pontoon, Super Fun 21, and Blackjack Switch. Deciding which version of the game is right for you largely depends on your goals, personality and style of play, which is why we strongly recommend reading the rules for each game before playing with real money.
Remember, you can always play for free if you want to become accustomed to the rules of each game and what they have to offer. You should try to find the variation of blackjack that provides you with the most entertainment. No matter which variant you choose, the house always has a slight advantage, so don’t expect to make your millions via online blackjack gambling. Just enjoy the thrill of the game.
Live Blackjack vs Virtual Blackjack
Apart from the different versions of blackjack there are available, you also have the choice of playing blackjack at the table of a real casino or on a virtual table with real players and either a human or virtual dealer. Many casinos, such as William Hill, offer both variations of the game.
You can look through a lobby of real casino tables and join if there’s a spare seat. The cards you are dealt will only be visible to you – they have barcodes so that you can see your hand on the screen. Many players find this thrilling, and it’s easy to see why, given they’re playing live blackjack at a real casino table. Sometimes, you’ll find that many tables are already full of players, but some versions of the game allow you to bet on the hands of other players.
If you’d prefer to play blackjack at any time without having to join a table at a real casino, you can find plenty or virtual blackjack tables to join instead. In some cases, this is more practical because you don’t have to wait for a seat to become vacant at a table that plays with stakes, you’re comfortable with. Regardless of whether you choose to play at a virtual table or live blackjack, you can still win plenty of money and enjoy the thrill of the game.
What Are the Most Popular Blackjack Games?
Nowadays, there are numerous variations of the game of Blackjack, namely traditional Blackjack, Spanish 21, and Super Fun 21. Each game has slightly different rules and strategy of play.
In Spanish 21, there are a few additional rules that work in your favor, meaning it might be the right variant of blackjack for you if you want to perfect your online blackjack strategy and take home some winnings. Some rules in Spanish 21 that you won’t find in traditional blackjack include the ability to surrender after doubling down. Plus, you automatically win if your hand totals 21. There are also several ‘special’ hands that offer higher odds, making it ideal for high rollers. Bear in mind that in exchange for these player ‘favors,’ all the tens are removed from the deck, which works in the dealer’s favor.
Blackjack Switch, another popular variant of traditional Blackjack, is a game where the player is dealt two hands and given the option to swap cards between the two to improve their value. If you consider yourself a strategist, Blackjack Switch might be right up your alley.
How to Manage Your Money When Playing Blackjack Online
First, we reiterate that you should never gamble with more money than you can afford to lose, but that almost goes without saying. However, there are some money management strategies that you might want to consider after deciding how much you’re willing to spend (which you can refer to as your bankroll).
- Paroli Betting Strategy
According to the Paroli Betting Strategy, you should increase your bet every time you win a hand. So, if you bet $10 and win the hand, your next bet should be $20. Win again, and you should bet $30. Lose, and you start betting with your minimum bet again and utilize the same system.
- One Half Up
This is another progressive money management system, though it differs from the Paroli strategy because it only requires you to increase your bets after winning two hands in a row.
- Martingale Betting System
This well-known strategy is utilized by players with short-term winning goals. First, you’ll place an initial bet of, let’s say, $5. Each time you win, you bet the same amount. However, when you lose, you should double your bet. You should be up by $5 by the time you eventually win again, but multiple consecutive losses can lead you to lose everything.
How to Avoid Gambling Away Your Life Savings
If you ended up on a winning streak, assumed lady luck was on your side, placed all your winnings on a hand and left the casino broke, you wouldn’t be the first. You need to manage your money and bankroll responsibly to make sure gambling doesn’t become a problem. After all, responsible gambling should merely be a bit of fun. We recommend setting aside a portion of your monthly wage – no more than 15% - to make sure that even if you don’t win a cent, you won’t have to worry about meeting rent payments, paying your bills or putting food on the table. Take the time to work out how much money you can afford to spend on your hobby, and don’t assume winning streaks will last indefinitely.
Generally speaking, to really enjoy blackjack, you should join the table with a bankroll that’s equal to 50 times the minimum bet. So, if the minimum bet is $10, you should start with $500 (provided you can afford to lose it). If you only have enough cash to play a few hands, you won’t have much chance of getting your money back should you lose.
Blackjack Online: Bonuses and Campaigns
Most casinos offer bonuses and campaigns to both existing and prospective players. However, the bonuses aren’t usually as lucrative for blackjack as they are for the slot machines because the house has a higher chance of taking your money when you play slots. Nevertheless, typical online casino bonuses include deposit matches, free sign-up deposits and welcome bonuses. For example, it’s common to find casinos that will double your initial deposit when you sign-up, but you’ll likely have to deposit a minimum amount (which could be $100, for example).
Many casinos, including 888 Casino, frequently offer players a free sign-up bonus, meaning you can start playing blackjack with real money without having to deposit any cash into your account. However, you may be required to deposit money into your account to claim your winnings. Be careful to read the terms and conditions when signing up to bonuses and campaigns – many people get caught out by the fine print. By far, the most common bonus offered by all the major online casinos is the deposit match sign-up bonus.
You can reach our in-depth reviews of online casinos in the USA to learn more about the specific bonuses and campaigns offered by each one. Remember that bonuses usually expire, so keep checking back to our website for the latest information.
The Leading Blackjack Software Developers
Many online casinos, including 888 Casino, source their blackjack games from third-party software developers. Some of the most popular developers include:
Microgaming is best-known for its vast array of online slot games, but it also packs the lobbies of many leading casinos with its blackjack games, developed through its ‘Quickfire’ platform.
- Felt ltd
Felt ltd is the developer of popular blackjack online games such as Perfect Pairs, European Blackjack, Pontoon, and Double Exposure Blackjack.
This Canadian firm (which was recently overtaken by Amaya) is famous for its Progressive Blackjack game, which allows players to see the dealer deal cards using animated hands.
- Evolution Gaming
Evolution gaming is arguably the leading developer of live blackjack software. It’s a standout developer because it allows players to play at real casinos thousands of miles away. A dealer hands out real cards, and barcodes enable you to see them on your screen. There’s also a ‘Bet Behind’ option, which allows you to place bets on other people’s hands if there are no available seats at the casino table.
This is another developer that’s most famous for its vast range of online slot machines, but it also has an impressive portfolio of blackjack games. It also has a ‘high roller’ version of the game it calls Black Jack Professional, which is ideal for those who think they have mastered blackjack strategy.
Ready to Start Playing Blackjack Online?
If you’re ready to start playing blackjack, you can find all the best games listed in our lobby. All games are reviewed for their security, fairness and ease-of-use by our experts – we’d never recommend a casino game that was out to steal your money (but we can’t guarantee they won’t win it). If you want to find a reputable casino, check out our reviews. We’ll tell you how to sign-up, which documents you require and how to start playing blackjack within minutes.
If you’re still not convinced that blackjack is the right game for you, try playing a few free games so that you can get used to the rules and find out whether it gives you a thrill. There are plenty of other casino games to explore if blackjack doesn’t tick all your boxes. If you didn’t get all the information you require from this in-depth guide, we’d love to hear from you. Tell us what we’re missing or what questions you have, and we’ll put your mind at ease. From all of us at JustGamblers.com – happy gambling!