Basic Strategy for European Blackjack - charts
The following basic strategy table is appropriate for European blackjack, at least the variation I saw played in Berlin and Hamburg, and specifically excepting the United Kingdom. The specific rules are as follows:
- Six decks (this chart is also accurate for 4 or 8 decks)
- Dealer stands on soft 17
- Player may only double on hard totals of 9-11
- Player may double after a split
- No-peek (player loses total bet, including after doubling or splitting, if dealer has blackjack)
The house edge under this rules is 0.62%.
To use the basic strategy look up your hand along the left vertical edge and the dealer's up card along the top. In both cases an A stands for ace. From top to bottom are the hard totals, soft totals, and splittable hands.
United Kingdom Blackjack
Prior to September 1, 2007, splitting fours, fives, and tens was not allowed. This only affected the basic strategy player with fours, increasing the house edge by 0.003%. I have heard that with the new law allowing all splits, doubling on any first two cards is also permitted, at least at the Grosvenor casinos. Following is the basic strategy for post 9/1/07 U.K. rules.
If you should find a table that allows early surrender then take it with any of the following hands. I have heard rumors such games exist in Russia, and I know they do in Macau, except against a dealer ace.
- 12 to 17 vs. ace, including a pair of 6's, 7's or 8's
- 5 to 7 vs. ace, including a pair of 3's
- 14 to 16 vs 10, including pair of 7's or 8's
- 16 vs 9
Written by:Michael Shackleford