Master low stakes live blackjack with these tips

Learn how to master low stakes live blackjack and make the smartest plays.
Let's face it: low stakes live blackjack is the least cool of all the blackjack types. 

In fact, you could even say that any low stakes game has a certain "uncoolness" attached to it. But why? 
It's simple really: low-value wins aren't that sexy. No one cares about regular 1:1 wins - all they care about is the high stakes, all in kind of gameplay. They care about those giant wins that are often glamourised by Hollywood. But experienced players will know that the slow and steady approach is far more sustainable than a high risk, high reward approach.

And in this article, we show you the best ways to play low stakes live blackjack with any bet limit. If you're in the market for some budget 21 - then sit tight and read on.

Low Limit Blackjack Tips & Tricks

You may be familiar with the saying "slow and steady wins the race". And this is the philosophy you should develop when playing low limits blackjack. Sure, there may be people around you who are betting the maximum limit. But the same people could be torching their balance into nothingness.

It's also important to point out that the idea of low limits is different for everyone. As a rule of thumb, you shouldn't be making bets in the £10 or over territory. Some will even say you shouldn't be even be spending pounds at all and should be looking for penny tables. But again, the idea of low stakes is somewhat subjective. Choose a bet you are comfortable with and stick with it. Without further adieu, let's take a look at those tips.

Learn the optimal plays: If you play an online slot, there's no such thing as optimal play. You crank a lever and see if you win something. But in live blackjack, there are optimal plays dependent on the cards you have - and what the dealer has. Take a look at this strategy chart:


As you can see, if you are dealt 11, then you should almost always double down. And this is because there's a good chance you could draw a value 10 card and score a blackjack win. But it's not recommended to double down if the dealer has an Ace up card - due to their strong chance of landing a 21.

Make sure you know the rules: All games of blackjack may look the same - but this is not the case. Each game or online casino will have their own set of rules. And these rules can certainly affect the house edge aka the casino's edge over you. This can be anything from rules regarding splitting or if there's an option for surrendering. At first, you may find the number of variations overwhelming but stick with it. You will soon learn what tables to play at - and what tables to avoid.

One rule you should be cautious around is the dealer's actions on a hard or soft 17. If the casino stipulates they have to stand on either of these hands - then great! Enjoy some low stakes action. But if the establishment does let the dealer draw on these hands, then we suggest looking for another table. This is because a soft 17 is one of the best hands to land a 21 win. A casino can massively increase their house edge by letting the dealer take a card on these hand types.

Always split your Aces: Splitting is an option in this card game when you have been dealt a pair of cards. You have the option to split the hand turning it into two hands. This can increase your betting opportunities. But there are optimal choices for splitting. Aces, for example, should always be split. This is due to the high chance of a 21 win.


Getting frustrated? Walk away: The whole point of low limit 21 is to  A) have fun and B) play cautiously. If you start getting frustrated by a bad run of luck, then you may be tempted to place higher bets to make some ground on your losses. This is rarely a good strategy - and often leads to even greater losses. We suggest walking away for a while. Once you have cleared your head, you can continue playing.

Practice makes perfect

Now you have all these strategies memorised, you may be eager to head into the casino and test your luck. We would dissuade against real money play while you are still picking up the game. There are two distinct ways you can practice your skills:

Use the demo mode option: In the past, it was easy to find demo online blackjack tables. But it's becoming more and more difficult to find these types of games. If you do find one, you can practice for free and get a feel for the game. You will have a real balance and it will even seem like you are winning for real. But it's just play money - which makes our second option even better.

Play with a bonus: In your travels, you may be lucky enough to come across a no deposit live dealer bonus. And we say take it; there's no risk to claiming these kinds of bonuses. Firstly, it is awarded to you for free. Secondly, you can actually win some real money from it. Providing you can satisfy any wagering requirements. 

You could also consider claiming a match bonus. Yes, this does involve depositing real money - but you will be able to practice your blackjack play for longer. And who knows? You could even make your money back. But just like a no deposit bonus, you will have to fulfill any wagering requirements set by the respective casino.
Aaron Braund

29 October 2018