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You might be used to hands of blackjack where you’re focused on just two or three cards at a time — perhaps more if you’re an advanced player who knows how to manage a good split. Well, get ready to step out of your comfort zone with multihand blackjack.
If you’ve got the skills to add quickly and know when to hit or stand, this blackjack type can satisfy your need for a challenge. The rules change depending on the variation, but all games allow players to play multiple hands at once per single round. Some tables and casinos let players juggle five hands simultaneously.
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No matter which variation of blackjack you play, it starts with a wager. Immediately after placing a bet, though, multihand blackjack diverges from other styles of play. If you’re familiar with the base game, you’ll just need to apply those same blackjack rules to each hand you’re dealt.
Each hand has the same odds that you’d have with single-hand blackjack. However, because you’re dealt with multiple pairs of cards, you get more chances to win. Of course, blackjack odds are difficult to calculate — it depends on your strategy and skill. Also, with multiple hands in play, some gamblers balance aggressive and conservative strategies so they can go for a higher payout without the risk involved in a single hand.
One thing to note with multihand blackjack is that you’re wagering on each hand you play, so you stand to win or lose with each hand. This means that while several of your hands could beat the dealer and payout at the end of one round, you could lose all five hands and all five bets in the next. Multihand blackjack is fun and fast, but it requires lots of focus while playing.
Learn all the details from this instruction video for Multihand blackjack.
For example, in a five-hand version of traditional blackjack, you’d be dealt 10 cards, two per hand, faceup. The dealer gets two cards — one facedown and one faceup. Your goal is to get your hand’s card value closer to 21 than the dealer without going over. You win your wager for every hand that beats the dealer.
Though multihand blackjack can be thrilling, there are some important rules to keep in mind. Most tables don’t allow the player to surrender, and the game involves multiple decks — six are common.
Multihand blackjack can mix with other versions of this game. For example, you can play multihand European blackjack or multihand Atlantic City blackjack.
Each version involves traditional game rules with a few changes since multiple hands are being played. The dealer might be allowed to peek at their cards, for example, either in certain conditions — such as following a soft 17 — or at the start of every hand. These differences can throw off your blackjack strategy, so come to the table prepared.
Also, keep the bet limits in mind. If you want to play five hands, you’ll have to open a wager for each one.