Card counting is probably the most popular blackjack technique known within the gambling world. While many players unfamiliar with the strategy wrongly believe that it ensures that every hand will be a win, it does reverse the house edge in favor of the player. Many Americans are interested in learning how to count cards for this very reason. So, we’ve created this helpful guide to help such players learn what counting cards is and how to do it. Although you won’t be able to count cards there, we have listed some online casinos that pay real money down below that offer blackjack.
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Card counting is a method players use to track which cards have been dealt in blackjack. Through this technique, gamblers get an idea of which cards remain in the deck and can adjust their bet. If they believe that the dealer has a strong hand, they are able to fold. Additionally, if they believe that the dealer has a weak hand, they are able to raise their bet. Essentially, players have a chance to give themselves an advantage over the casino, which means more wins for players.
That said, it must be understood that players who choose to use this controversial playing method are not guaranteed a win with every hand. As with when the casino maintains a house edge, there is still a chance that casino will win a hand. This is particularly true if players count cards incorrectly (which may even then lead to an even bigger house edge for the casino.) It is also important to note that players need to maintain a large bankroll in order to use this strategy, which also opens up the chance of making big losses pretty quickly if a player gets the strategy all wrong.
Casinos generally don’t like players who card count, and while the act isn’t exactly illegal in most states and/or countries, most will probably ask players to leave if they catch them using this strategy. (Just think about Tom Cruise and Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man.)
There have been several different card counting systems developed over the years. (Modern times has even brought the invention of card counting app options for players.) Some of these techniques are overly complex and are really more trouble than they are worth. The method we always recommend players use is called the High Lo card counting system.
Basically, with this method players assign different cards different values, which can be either high, low or neutral. They then begin to try to figure out whether or not there is a better chance of high or low value card being dealt next.
It is important that players begin card counting as soon as the round begins. Although the technique isn’t very useful in the beginning, it becomes more useful as games go along. Cards are given values in the following manner:
- Cards with values between one and six are given a value of +1.
- Neutral cards – those with a value between seven and nine – are given a value of 0.
- Any card with a value above nine is given a value of -1.
When cards have been dealt, players are able to calculate the value of their hand. If players calculate a positive score, it probably means that more high value cards were dealt in this round.
While this system does not ensure wins, it does potentially increase their occurrence, especially if done correctly. It becomes harder to count cards in blackjack games that use more decks of cards.
Card Counting is not illegal under any US state or federal as it is simply a technique that players can use to increase their odds of winning games. However, that stated card counting apps are banned from being used in most US casinos.
As a general rule, casinos also don’t like it when players increase their odds of winning, thus any American who chooses to count cards can look forward to a particular establishment asking them to leave. While this may not seem like a big deal, most casinos do land up taking note of card counters, and they may be prevented from playing at blackjack tables at other major gambling establishments throughout the country.
So, while players have a chance of increase their wins during a particular play session, they do it at a risk of being excluded from playing the game at world-renowned entertainment centers ever again. This is something to keep in mind when using this strategy.
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