Rules of Blackjack

Game goal: Defeat the dealer via:

  1. Accumulating a higher total than them without exceeding 21 or
  2. Not going bust when the dealer goes bust.

How it works

Blackjack get your cards

Roll the dice and let's get things started, mate! Remember, you've got to throw in at least the minimum bet on the table. If you're giving the online game a whirl, you need to choose the value of the virtual chip, then proceed by clicking on the betting box. There's nothing quite like the thrill of the game, especially when you've got your chips on the line, so always stay updated about your bonus offers. Play it smart and make the most of your gaming experience in New Zealand!

Blackjack get your cards

Roll up your sleeves, gather round, and grab your cards! Each participant in this exciting game is presented with a pair of revealing, face-up cards from our dealer. Our dealer, in a thrilling twist, receives two cards as well! But here's where the real intrigue comes in - one of these cards remain an enigma, dealt face-down. This, my friends, is known as the mysterious hole card.

Blackjack look at cards

Take a moment to study your hand, then make your choice. If you're in the mood for a thrill, 'hit' - take another card. If you're content with what you've got, choose to 'stand' - stick with the cards in your grasp. Feeling like Lady Luck is on your side? 'Double' - place another wager matching your initial one and get yourself just one more card. But, if fate has dealt you a pair, you can 'split' - divvy your pair up into two separate hands. It's all part of the exhilarating challenge of the game.

Blackjack see if you win

Give it a go and see if Lady Luck is on your side. Once all the gamers have staked their calls, the dealer flips their hidden card and, based on the regulations laid down by the gaming house, pulls more cards into play (there's a bit more detail on this below). If you're holding a hand that's got a higher tally than the dealer's - just as long as it's not over 21 – or perhaps the dealer's hand goes bust but yours stays in the game, then congratulations – you've hit the win!

Additional Regulations You Must Be Aware Of

Understanding Card Values

If you've had a whirl at card games in the past, then the concept of blackjack card values will be a doddle for you to grasp. In the heart-thumping world of blackjack, aces are akin to shape-shifters, taking a value of either 1 or 11, while the regal face cards (our charming jacks, queens, and kings) hold a steadfast value of 10. The remainder of the deck plays a straight bat, with every card valuing exactly what they profess on their face. Let's dive into each card group individually, to truly demystify it all for you.

Face Value e.g 5=5
playing cards numbers

In the thrilling game of blackjack, oftentimes you'll stumble upon a distinctive set of cards adorned with jacks, queens, and kings. Splashed with vibrant hues, these cards are commonly referred to as "face cards", owing to the vivid faces peering out from them. Alternatively, they're also known as "paint cards", a nod to the crayon-like colours applied to their illustrations. No matter what name rings in your ears, each brings with it the rewarding value of 10 points. So, nestle yourself into the exhilarating world of blackjack, where even the cards get to wear faces!

Value 10 cards
playing cards 10

In the captivating world of blackjack, aces hold a unique charm as they can be counted either as 1 or 11 points, giving them a bit of magic. The moment you consider an ace as 11, the hand unfurls into a "soft" hand. Picture this, an ace and a 5 together makes a "soft 16" hand, which can equally be seen as a 6 - isn't that a thrilling twist? But when the scene shifts and an ace is considered as just a 1-pointer, it's a whole new game, and, my friend, you're dealing with a "hard" hand. Such are the delightful oddities and intriguing nuances of blackjack!

Value 1 or 11 card
play cards aces

In the heart-pounding game of cards, nothing beats the sheer thrill of holding an Ace card coupled with a card of 10 value, be it a 10, Jack, Queen, or King. This glorious combination brings you closer to the magical number 21 - fondly known as a blackjack in gaming circles across our Beautiful New Zealand. With this potent pair in your hand, you're sitting pretty on a golden opportunity - it's impossible to lose. You'll either find yourself basking in the joy of victory or standing your ground in a tie.

Value 21 card The best combination
play cards 21

Essential blackjack terminology you should be aware of

At the very heart of blackjack, there's a universe of moves you can make when you're in the throes of playing out a hand. Understanding this is absolutely vital, like feeling the pulse of the game itself. But as the saying goes, knowledge is only the first step. The follow up? Well, that's about figuring out how to ensure your blackjack strategy is top-notch. It's about knowing which action fits perfectly into every potentially tricky situation like a puzzle piece. It's when you are so acquainted with the game, it's as if you're dancing to its rhythm with each move you make. You see, when you've got a solid grasp on what to do in each given circumstance, then you've truly learnt the art of playing blackjack. In this segment, we're going to unveil the essence of all the actions, as well as the core moments where it's best to use them. So, brace yourself for an exciting journey into the heart of blackjack.

OCCA Blackjack table


In the exhilarating world of card games, 'hitting' signifies your thirst for another card from the dealer. In most scenarios, this move is driven by the gut feel that the dealer may just have an edge over you. Now, given that you're only privy to one of the dealer’s cards, it becomes a stimulating challenge to decide when to hit. Nevertheless, there are some fundamental tactics up your sleeve, always encouraging you to hit on a stiff 11 or under, and soft 17 or less. To add a bit more spice to the game, you'd want to hit on a hard 12, unless the dealer unveils anything but a 4, 5, or 6. And, should the dealer flash a 7 or higher, don't hesitate to hit on a hard 13-16. It's all part and parcel of the whirlwind experience in the unpredictable world of card games. But remember, the house doesn't always win.

blackjack hit


Choosing to stand signifies your contentment with your hand and needing no more cards. Undoubtedly, this is the perfect move when your hand is impressive, but occasionally, it's the most fitting play in subtler situations as well. Without fail, stand tall with a soft 19 or more, or a robust 17 or up. Allow your intuition to guide you to hold firm with a soft 18 when the dealer reveals a 9, 10 or an ace. It's also generally favourable to maintain a steady resolve with a hard 12 when the dealer displays numbers between 4 and 6, and to stick to your guns with a hard 13-16 when facing a dealer with numbers from 2 to 6.

blackjack stand


When luck hands you a pair (two cards sharing the same rank), you're given the golden opportunity to split them into two distinct hands. To do this, you must match your original bet, putting your faith in the game and doubling down. Once splintered, the dealer showers each of your initial cards with an additional card, turning your single hand into two, ripe for playing out separately. Remember, in the heart-pounding excitement of the game, always choose to split aces and eights - it's as if the universe itself is inviting you to take a chance. But hold your nerves steady and never divide fives or tens, for in that pathway lies unnecessary risk.

blackjack split


Feeling bold? It's time to double down! That means, you've got to match your original bet and in return, the dealer will chuck you just one more card. This isn't just fun, it's brilliant strategy – one of the juiciest parts of playing blackjack in New Zealand. So, when should you do it? When you've got a hard 10 in your hand, unless the dealer's showing off an ace or a 10, that's the perfect time to double down. When you've got a hard 11 and the dealer doesn't have an ace up their sleeve, go right ahead and double that bet! When you're sitting there with a hard 9 and the dealer's showing anything from a 3 to a 6, it's time to up the ante and double down. It's sure to add a thrilling edge to your game and potentially plump up that bonus.

blackjack double


While you're engrossed in a game of blackjack, remember that there's a chance to retreat and hold onto a slice of your wager. Most Kiwi casinos only extend the offer of surrender after the dealer has had a gander for a blackjack. If Lady Luck favors the dealer with a blackjack, they're instantly crowned winners and your white flag goes unnoticed. Over time, you'll find it's a savvy move to wave the white flag on a rigid 16 that's not a pair of eights when the dealer unveils a 9, 10, or an ace. Also, don't feel defeated when you choose to surrender a steadfast 15 against the dealer’s formidable 10. It's all part of the strategy, mates!

blackjack double


When the croupier flashes an ace, they'll typically dangle the allure of "Insurance" or "Even Money" in front of the players. This is a unique side wager that rewards if the croupier's hidden card tips the scale at a cool 10 points, landing them a blackjack. The game plan for deciding to opt for insurance is straightforward: Don't. It's an unwise gamble that'll see your hard-earned New Zealand dollars drain away over time and it's delightfully simple to give it a miss.

blackjack insurance

Mastering Blackjack Victory: A Guide

Mastering the ins and outs of blackjack isn't a piece of cake, but with a dash of patience, it can surely be achieved. The objective here is to engrave in your mind the most beneficial move to make in every conceivable situation. Sure, it may seem like a tonne to commit to memory, and this is precisely where our helpful blackjack strategy graphic comes into play. This nifty chart, available at no cost, will become your best mate in no time. After a bit of practice, you'll start to recognise all the unique combinations and circumstances like the back of your hand. So hang in there, mate! Before you know it, you'll be acing every game of blackjack with confidence and style.

Blackjack Reference Card

Essential Blackjack Strategies from the Professionals

  • Consistently divide pairs of aces and pairs of eights. This is sacred wisdom directly from the blackjack guidebook, promising significant profits over time.
  • Always double down on a hard 10 except when the dealer reveals a 10 or an ace.
  • Always double down on a hard 11, unless the dealer's face-up card is an ace.
  • Don't divide a set of tens, jacks, queens, or kings. Although splitting may appear intelligent, a confirmed score of 20 holds much greater worth.
  • Avoid purchasing insurance. This is a unique secondary wager we discussed previously, and only those gamblers moved by superstition consider it to be a wise decision.

Selecting the Appropriate Game that Suits You

Choosing the most fitting blackjack game for you is like weaving a tapestry of securing the most favourable odds with seeking the greatest worth and player experience. If you're indulging in blackjack on the web in the heart of New Zealand, you're spoilt for choice, having options like the classic blackjack or voguish versions like Blackjack Switch and Progressive Blackjack at your fingertips.

Just a friendly reminder, mate! You've got the opportunity to give all these a whirl without spending a cent of your hard-earned cash. It's a fantastic way to find that perfect fit for you. Once you've found your favourite, you can then start sizing up the different online casinos. Using your bankroll wisely in Kiwi land can make all the difference. So go on, go have a blast and remember, it's all about having a good time!

Immerse yourself in the top-notch online blackjack platforms in New Zealand, where they generously match your initial deposit with substantial bonus offers as a warm welcome. Not only that, but these platforms also boast an expansive variety of blackjack games, inclusive of exciting live dealer tables. Venture into our specially curated list of preferred casinos and dive into the thrilling experience of online gaming. Wishing you every bit of good fortune as you test your skills at the tables!

Frequently asked questions

Need clarification on Blackjack? Fear not, our Frequently Asked Questions section provides all the answers you need.

What guidelines govern the game of blackjack?

Playing blackjack, just like the thrill of a high-stakes rugby match, is a magnificently exciting dance with chance, where you're trying to outsmart the dealer without tipping over the edge. Your mission, if you dare to accept it, is to get a hand that's as close to 21 as possible, all the while ensuring you don't go bust. Blackjack is a captivating game that can be played with anything between 1 to 8 decks, depending on how you're feeling. The value of each card is vitally important, almost as crucial as making sure to get your Weet-Bix first thing in the morning! Aces are like a versatile Kiwi's Swiss Army Knife, counting as either 1 or 11, and cards numbered between 2 and 10 are worth their face value. All the regal face cards – the king, queen, and jack - are treasured as much as a jar of Marmite; they're all worth a solid 10! In this mesmerising game of skill and strategy, the value of each hand is the sum of the cards' point values, but there's one shining exception. That's the much-coveted blackjack itself, which wears the crown as the highest hand in the game. Just like the joy of finding a bonus golden kiwi in your garden, securing a blackjack makes you feel on top of the world! Play smart, play brave, and may the cards fall in your favour.

With an anticipatory air, the dealer deals a pair of cards, face up, to each eager player. Following this, the dealer deals themselves two cards, one revealed for all to see, the other laying face down, shrouded in mystery. If fortune deals the dealer an Ace or a 10, an offer for an insurance wager will be presented, even before a sneak peek to ascertain if there's a blackjack waiting in the wings. If it turns out to be a blackjack, the dealer triumphs over all the player's hands barring another blackjack. The latter scenario would result in a draw, or in the gambling parlance of New Zealand, it would be a 'push'.

As you enter this thrilling game, you have a number of invigorating options at your fingertips. You can opt to stand, swing for another hit, daringly double down, strategically split or surrender if the going gets tough. As this electrifying dance of risk and reward plays out, if everyone holds their ground or if luck abandons them to go bust, the dealer then steps up to take their turn. Should the dealer's fortunes crumble and they go bust, breathe a sigh of relief, for any Kiwi player who's managed to steer clear of busting claims the victory. But hold on, let's say the dealer navigates the rough waters without going bust, it then becomes a thrilling battle of the highest points. The adrenaline amplifies as the player with the highest point total, between themselves and the dealer, will bask in the joy of victory. So, dear New Zealand players, embrace the challenge and may the odds be forever in your favour!

What's the right time to hit or stand in Blackjack?

Unfailingly strike when your hand value is 11 or lower and hold when it is 17 or more.

Boost your game by doubling down on a 9, or push the boundaries when you're holding a 10 or 11, especially if your hand gutsily outweighs the cards the dealer has laid bare.

If you're holding a tough hand valued between 12 and 16, the best move is to stand firm if the dealer displays a 2-6. However, if the dealer reveals any card from 7 up to the face ones, it's a clear signal to take a gamble and hit. Hold onto your breath, cross your fingers and trust your instincts!

Always opt to hit if you have a soft 13 to 15.

In the high-stakes game of blackjack, you've got to be gutsy when the dealer is displaying cards between two and six. You feel the adrenaline pump through your veins as you choose to double down on a soft 16 to 18. However, when the dealer reveals a card seven or higher, it's time to play it safe and just hit. Each decision sways with the rhythm of your heartbeat, emphasising the thrilling dance between risk and reward.

Is a blackjack superior to 21?

Indeed, nothing quite beats the thrill of playing your cards just right and landing that majestic Blackjack hand. Though scoring a solid 21 is a cause for jubilation, it's still the resplendent Blackjack that outshines all in this game of chance and strategy. In the vibrant landscape of New Zealand's card games, Blackjack still reigns supreme.

Does a distinction exist between blackjack and 21?

Absolutely! In the exhilarating game of Blackjack, scoring a 21 with just two cards - an Ace twinned with a 10, Jack, Queen or King - is such a thrilling moment. On the other hand, the heart-pounding number 21 could be reached with any combination of cards, regardless of how many cards it takes to hit that magical number.

In the heart-thumping game of Blackjack, when you're fortunate enough to hit that magic number, the payout is 3:2. So, imagine you've put a cheeky $10 on the table and Lady Luck gives you a wink with a blackjack - you'd find yourself $15 richer. On the flip side, if you keep drawing cards until you've forged a victorious hand of 21, your original $10 wager would double, leaving you with a cool $10 profit. Isn't that a fantastic feeling? A win is a win, after all!

What does splitting mean in blackjack?

In the thrilling, suspense-filled world of blackjack, the exciting option to split pairs hands you a chance to navigate your fate and craft two fresh hands from the original. Imagine having two Aces and gleefully choosing to split them. However, this riveting play demands that you place an extra wager to back up your second hand. Now, the blackjack version you're engrossed in might have its own unique rules, such as limitations on the number of splits, the ability to double down subsequent to a split or even restrictions on the hands you're allowed to divide initially. It's crucial to keep in mind, if you daringly split aces and fate deals you a 10-value card, it tallys up to 21 post-split, and not a blackjack. Ah, the sweet taste of victory! Always remember, in the thrilling game of blackjack, every turn holds the potential for an enthralling twist.