Blackjack Myths: Fact vs Fiction

blackjack table with text blackjack myths debunked

Blackjack is one of the most popular casino table games, but its storied history has led to numerous myths and misconceptions emerging over the years. As a blackjack enthusiast, it’s important you know what’s truth versus fiction so you can play the game properly and have the most fun. Let’s debunk some common blackjack myths and separate fact from superstition.

The House Has No Edge if You Play Perfectly

This is one of the biggest blackjack myths out there. While basic blackjack strategy can reduce the house edge dramatically, it does not eliminate it entirely. The truth is the house maintains a small mathematical edge even against perfect play due to the blackjack payout only being 3:2 on natural blackjacks. The exact house edge depends on the rules and number of decks used, but is usually between 0.5% to 1%.

Never Take Insurance

While insurance is generally not a good bet with its high house edge, there are a few situations where it can be profitable. If you are an advanced player using card counting, insurance can sometimes shift the odds in your favor when there is a very unbalanced running count. But for casual players, declining insurance is typically the best move when playing blackjack online games at Betiton.

Always Split 8s and Aces

Splitting 8s and Aces is usually correct strategy, but not absolutely always. For example, if you have a pair of 8s versus a dealer 2 in a single deck game, you would be better off standing instead of splitting. Aces should not be split against a dealer Ace or 10, as you are unlikely to improve on 21. Basic strategy guides account for these exceptions to the rules.

Never Play Side Bets

Most blackjack side bets like Perfect Pairs have a very high house edge and should be avoided. However, there are a few side bets with a low house advantage, like ‘Lucky Ladies’ and ‘Match the Dealer’. These can add variance and excitement without heavily impacting your bottom line. Just be selective!

men and women playing blackjack

Card Counting is Illegal

Thanks to pop culture, many people mistakenly believe card counting in blackjack is illegal. But because it simply involves mental calculations and no outside devices, it is not actually prohibited – only casinos can bar you. That said, getting caught will still result in you being kicked out! There have been numerous cases of casinos banning individuals for card counting so don’t be surprised if you’re custom is rejected if you count cards – they can still ban you.

New Decks Mean You’re Due for Blackjacks

Just because a freshly shuffled shoe is brought out does not influence whether you will get blackjacks early on. The order of the cards is always random. There is no guarantee you will see more blackjacks or bigger hands right after the cards are shuffled. It’s important not to let this common myth trick you into poor bets.

You Should Always Hit 16 Versus a Dealer 10

While basic strategy says to hit 16 versus 10, card counters know there are times where the running count makes it correct to stand instead. If you notice a disproportionate number of high cards have already come out, standing on 16 can shift the odds in your favor when the dealer is showing a 10.


There you have it, seven Blackjack myths debunked. The next time you hear someone repeating these common blackjack myths, you can set the record straight. With the facts in hand, you’ll be ready to step up to the table and play your best game. Just remember – in blackjack, knowledge is power but please remember to gamble responsibly.

Narciso Baldo is the Director and Head Coach of Texas Hold'em Questions. He has been playing poker for over 16 years. After spending many years as a professional, he now runs UK poker training site Texas Hold'em Questions. Narciso regularly writes poker articles sharing tips, strategy, news and experience with gambling enthusiasts. Narciso also writes for reputable gambling portal Casino City Times, (bio here). Contact: