Online Blackjack for Australians

If you're an Australian blackjack player and you're looking for online blackjack games you have loads of choice. The casinos use different software, some are better than others. We will guide you to the best blackjack casinos and games.

If you are looking to learn the game, we offer helpful rules and strategies. We will guide you to the best live dealer blackjack games, and suggest the best options for playing blackjack on your mobile device.

Blackjack Casinos

Best Australian Blackjack Casinos

Blackjack is a commonly found game at most online casinos accepting Australian players.

However, not all blackjack casinos are equal, for a number of reasons:

  • They use different blackjack software. Some software providers have better blackjack games than others.
  • They have different bonus offers. Some casinos exclude blackjack from the wagering requirements to earn their bonuses, because of the aforementioned ability to overcome the odds somewhat. Luckily, other casinos have blackjack specific bonuses to entice online blackjack players, so these are the casinos you should look for.

We have compiled for you here a list of the top Australian blackjack casinos. All you have to do is go through the list, read the reviews and then pick the casino you want.

Basic Blackjack Rules

The rules generally vary for the different blackjack games. However, there are some basic rules that remain the same regardless of variant.

These are the basic rules of the game:

  • All face cards have a value of 10.
  • The Ace has a value of 11 or 1, depending on the hand.
  • The aim is to beat the dealer's hand by creating a hand of 21 or closest to it.
  • You go bust if your hand has a value of over 21.

The following is the game play for blackjack:

  1. The dealer deals a hand of 2 cards each to you and himself.
  2. In most variants, one of the dealer's card is hidden, and referred to as the hole card.
  3. The other exposed card is the face card.
  4. Based on the strength of your hand you may choose to do one of the following:

    Hit: Ask for another card to strengthen your hand. You can hit till you have a hand that gives you a win, requires you to stand, or makes you bust.

    Stand: Hold your hand; you cannot hit once you opt to stand.

    Double down: the bet is doubled but you get just one more card. You cannot pick beyond that. This option is not available in all variants.

    Split: This option is available if your hand has 2 cards of identical value. You split the 2 cards into individual hands, and the bet too gets doubled. The number of times you can split depends on the variant you are playing.

  5. You win automatically if you have a blackjack, i.e. an Ace and a 10-value card.
  6. Blackjack pays 3:2.
  7. The dealer hits until his hand is 17 or higher.
  8. The dealer wins on a blackjack.

Finding Games with the Best Rules for the Blackjack Player

Playing blackjack becomes that much easier and fun if you are playing a variant with rules that work well for the player.

The following are some good rules that work for the player:

  • Single deck games are the best. They help bring down the house edge by 0.48%. However, often you find this being balanced out by poor game rules. Another good option is to look for 2-deck games, where the house edge comes down by approximately 0.19%.
  • Games with early or late surrender options can bring the house edge down. Late surrender brings down the house edge by 0.08%, while early surrender brings it down by 0.24%.
  • Allowing players to draw on split Aces works for the player. If you are allowed to play split Aces instead of having to draw a card for each split hand, the house edge reduces by about 0.19%.

The following are some rules that don't work for the player:

  • Getting a 6:5 payout on blackjack is bad as it increases the house edge by 1.39%. The ideal payout is the standard 3:2 payout.
  • Dealer hitting on soft 17 works against the player as it spikes the house edge up by 0.22%.
  • The rule that bans doubling down after splitting works against the player because it increases the house edge by 0.14%.

Optimal Blackjack Strategy - Using the Blackjack Strategy Chart

Strategy plays a very critical role in determining how you fare while playing blackjack. The game progresses based on the initial hand dealt to you and the dealer. What you choose to do depends on your opening hand - hit, stand, double down, split, surrender or take insurance, for instance. Some of the decisions are easy: if you have a hand of 20 you will definitely stand, or if you have a hand of 11 you will obviously hit.

But some decisions can be tricky: what do you do if you have a pair of 9s, for instance? Would you stand, or would you split? Or would you take the bigger risk and hit, hoping for a 3? What if the dealer has a hand that could potentially be a blackjack? This is where strategy is vital.

One way of using blackjack strategy is to refer to blackjack strategy charts. These are charts that show the different hands possible for you and the dealer, and the best action for each hand. They include moves for hard hands, soft hands and pairs.

Strategy for Hard Hands

A hard hand is one without an Ace, or one with an Ace that is counted as just a single point.

The following is the strategy to use for hard hands:

  • For a total of a maximum of 8, always hit.
  • For a total of 9, double if the dealer's hand shows a 3, 4, 5 or 6. Otherwise, you must hit.
  • For a hand total of 10 or 11 and the dealer shows a card valued lower than your hand, double. Otherwise, hit.
  • For a hand of 12 to 16, hit if the dealer's hand is 7 or higher, else stand.
  • For a hand of 21, always stand.

Strategy for Soft Hands

A soft hand is a hand with an Ace that can be 1 or 11 points. Hitting a soft hand will not cause a player to bust.

The following is the strategy for soft hands:

  • Always hit for a soft hand of 15 or lower.
  • Always stand for a soft hand of 19 or higher.
  • For a soft hand of 16 to 18, double down if the dealer's hand shows a maximum of 6, else hit.

Strategy for Pair Hands

These are hands with 2 cards of identical value.

The following is the strategy for pair hands:

  • Always split with Aces or 8s.
  • Never split with 4s, 5s or 10s.
  • For all other pair hands, split if the dealer hand is a maximum of 6.

The following is an optimal blackjack strategy chart that you can refer to.

Double Deck, Dealer Hits on Soft 17
Dealers Card
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 A
8 H H H H H H H H H H
9 D D D D D H H H H H
10 D D D D D D D D H H
11 D D D D D D D D D D
12 H H S S S H H H H H
13 S S S S S H H H H H
14 S S S S S H H H H H
15 S S S S S H H H H/R H/R
16 S S S S S H H H H/R H/R
17 S S S S S S S S S S/R
A,2 H H H D D H H H H H
A,3 H H D D D H H H H H
A,4 H H D D D H H H H H
A,5 H H D D D H H H H H
A,6 H D D D D H H H H H
A,7 Ds Ds Ds Ds Ds S S H H H
A,8 S S S S Ds S S S S S
2,2 H/P H/P P P P P H H H H
3,3 H/P H/P P P P P H H H H
4,4 H H H H/P H/P H H H H H
5,5 D D D D D D D D H H
6,6 P P P P P H/P H H H H
7,7 P P P P P P H/P H H H
8,8 P P P P P P P P P P
9,9 P P P P P S P P S S
10,10 S S S S S S S S S S
H Hit
S Stand
D Double if allowed, else hit
DS Double if allowed, else stand
P Split
H/P Split if double after split, else hit
S/P Split if double after split, else stand
D/P Split if double after split, else double
H/R Surrender if allowed, else hit
S/R Surrender if allowed, else stand

How to Protect Yourself When Playing Online Blackjack

It doesn't make sense to play online blackjack for real money unless you have a good understanding of the game. You are playing a casino game with a built-in house edge; add to that the element of luck required and one thing is obvious: there are risks involved. Here are some ways to protect yourself from these risks when playing online blackjack, and thereby reducing your chances of losing.

Get Hold of the Right Online Blackjack Casino

The online blackjack casino world is a good mix of a number of trustworthy and reputed casinos and a few shady ones. The worst thing is there is no way of immediately knowing they are bad: they look and feel the same as the good ones. That is why choosing the right blackjack casino becomes imperative.

You will know a blackjack casino only from experience or by reading about others'. The bad ones may offer big bonuses to draw players and then make it impossible to withdraw winnings. Most reputable casinos will publish their licensing details and will indicate that they have been certified by an oversight organisations like TST or eCOGRA.

You should also check our list of top-rated online blackjack casinos above.

Be Aware of the Casino's Bonus and Withdrawal Policies

It is vital to know the bonus and withdrawal policies of an online blackjack casino before signing up. This gives you a fair idea of whether to play there or not. A good way of doing this is by minutely going through the terms and conditions. Information about withdrawal policies will also be available in the banking information that the casino provides.

Things to know include:

  • Wagering requirements
  • Minimum and maximum withdrawal limits
  • Withdrawal methods available

Ensure the Safety of Your Login Information

Your casino login information is as important as that of your bank. It gives access to the winnings you have earned. Therefore treat it with the same amount of care. Ensure that you log out at the end of each session. Keep your username and password in a safe location, away from prying eyes. The use of anti-virus software and firewalls also helps. The casino of course offers 128-bit SSL encryption, but it helps doubly to be careful at your end.

Practice Effective Bankroll Management

One way of ensuring you don't mess up a good play experience is through effective bankroll management. Do not overshoot the amount you set aside for playing. Set the time and money limits before you play - casinos have features that allow you to do this - and do not cross those limits. Gambling addiction is very real. If you feel you have a gambling problem do not hesitate to contact organizations like Gamblers Anonymous or GamCare for help.

Playing Mobile Blackjack from Smartphones and Tablets

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The immense popularity of the mobile device resulted in the birth of the mobile casino. The mobile casino has revolutionised online gambling as it allows players to play on the go, regardless of where they are. Now every reputed online casino operator has a mobile version of their casinos.

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Mobile casinos have a smaller catalogue of games compared to desktop casinos. Of course there are multi-platform mobile casinos and those running on software from providers Microgaming that have a huge cache of games, but the overall number is usually still lower compared to the total number of games at the desktop version of the casino. One of the games commonly available at mobile casinos for Australian players is blackjack.

Mobile blackjack games are usually compatible with all the major mobile platforms, including:

Windows Phone

Games were earlier available in the form of downloadable apps. The arrival of HTML5 for game development has resulted in the availability of the instant play version as well. Some providers like NetEnt, for instance, offers all its games in the instant play mode on the NetEnt Touch platform. Especially in Australia, the no download mobile casino games and apps are popular as real money gambling apps are not allowed to be showcased at the app stores of the mobile platforms.

Playing mobile blackjack is simple and fun as you can access the game at the mobile casino using your desktop casino log-in credentials. If you don't have an account you can open one directly at the mobile casino. All the usual promotions at the desktop casino are available at the mobile casino too, meaning you will not lose out on even a single one of them if you play at the mobile casino. All transactions and the overall gaming environment are secured with robust encryption technology.

Playing at Live Blackjack Casinos

Online blackjack is definitely fun, but nothing beats the experience of sitting at a blackjack table at a casino and being part of the action as it goes down. Online casinos have attempted, successfully too, to offer the exact land-based blackjack experience to online casino fans through the live blackjack casinos.

Live blackjack takes online casino gaming to a whole new level. You can play the game from your home, yes, but you will be dealt cards not by a software program but a real-life live dealer. You can interact with the live dealer as you play through the live chat feature.

Live blackjack games are set up at the live gaming studio of the casino software provider. Apart from a real life dealer, there is actual cash, chips, other players, and more. The action is recorded in full HD format and then streamed live to players from across the world over high speed Internet.

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Playing live dealer blackjack is simple:

  1. Log in to a casino and click the Live Dealer section.
  2. Click the game you want to play. You will see a new screen open with a dealer at the table.
  3. Place your bets for the hand you want to play.
  4. The dealer then deals the cards. Based on the hand you get, click the game controls to make your move - hit, stand, double down, split or any other move allowed.
  5. After you have formed your hand the dealer works on hers.
  6. The hand outcome determines the winner.

Blackjack Tournaments for Australian Players

The game of blackjack is fun to play at online casinos, but even more fun are the blackjack tournaments. A number of casinos accepting Australian players offer cool blackjack tournaments. At these tournaments you do not just look to beat the dealer; you try and collect the maximum number of chips in order to win.

Blackjack tournaments work just like poker tournaments, with each tournament having multiple tables. Each round in a tournament consists of 30 hands usually. At the end of these hands the chips are tallied and the winners advance to the next round. The top players from each table finally play off against each other at individual tables. This whittles down the competition until only the final table is left.

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The starting position for each deal is rotated around the table. This means the dealer doesn't deal to the same players first each round. This is a big difference between standard blackjack games and blackjack tournaments. Of course, strategy plays an important role in blackjack tournaments.

The simplest strategy to adopt may be to go against the flow and do the opposite of what the other players are doing. This is not based on fantasy; studies show that most players end up with similar results in most hands. Doing things differently, therefore, gives you a good shot at ending up winning and having more chips than the rest. The best thing about tournaments: there is prize money to be won.

So if you love blackjack and also love winning some good amount of money, playing tournaments may be the way to go for you.

Blackjack FAQ

Should I play single deck or multi-deck Blackjack?

This is not a straightforward consideration, because the house edge depends on the various in-game rules. However, if you were to compare a single deck and a multi-deck game with exactly the same rules, you will be at a slight disadvantage playing a multi-deck game. Having said that, it is usually easier to find more favourable in-game rules in multi-deck games, so pay close attention to these rules when deciding which to play.

Is Blackjack really the game with the best odds in a casino?

Yes, this is true - although it does depend on the various in-game rules and the player's skill - his ability to play the right strategies. Make sure that the game payout is at 3:2, avoid the more exotic variations like Double Exposure Blackjack and you're usually looking at a house edge of around only 1%, assuming you play correct basic strategy.

How can I learn to win at Blackjack?

The first thing to do is to find a resource (a book or website) that teaches you basic correct strategy. Make sure you are completely conversant in this strategy and you will end up being able to negate the house edge as much as possible.

There are also other approaches like card counting, but with the typical multi-deck set-ups of most online Blackjack games, this has become quite difficult to apply. And don't forget that if you count cards in a land-based casino are you are found out you will be barred from the casino.

Is it a good idea to take Insurance?

The simple answer to this is that if you are playing correct basic strategy you should never take insurance. This is especially true when the payout odds are 3:2, because you are always better off taking those odds than relying on a 1:1 payout.