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How to Deal Blackjack

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Lisa Dawson

My name is Lisa Dawson. I'm a passionate card game player with many years of expertise in the field. Enjoy my guides and articles!

Blackjack, also known as 21, is one of the most popular and widely recognized casino games around the world. It’s a game that mixes skill, strategy, and a bit of luck, making it incredibly engaging for both players and dealers. If you have ever wondered how to deal blackjack, this comprehensive guide will walk you through the entire process. By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of the rules, steps, and tips needed to become an effective blackjack dealer.

Understanding the Basics

Before diving into the mechanics of dealing blackjack, it’s essential to understand the basic rules and objectives of the game. The main goal is to beat the dealer by having a hand value closer to 21 without going over.

The Deck and Card Values

Card Value
Ace 1 or 11
2-10 Face Value
Jack, Queen, King 10

A standard deck of 52 cards is used in blackjack, and multiple decks can be combined to increase the game’s complexity and edge.

Setting Up

Setting up a blackjack table involves several key components:

  • Table Layout: The table typically accommodates 5-7 players and has designated spaces (called “boxes”) where players place their bets.
  • Chips: Dealers should ensure they have an adequate supply of chips of various denominations.
  • Shoe: A shoe is used to hold and dispense cards. Multi-deck shoes are common in casinos.
  • Discard Tray: This is where used cards are placed once they have been played.

Dealing the Cards

Once the setup is complete, it’s time to deal the cards. Here are the steps:

  1. Players place their bets in their respective boxes.
  2. The dealer shuffles the cards thoroughly.
  3. If using a shoe, place the shuffled cards inside.
  4. Deal two cards to each player and two to yourself. Players’ cards are typically dealt face-up, while the dealer usually has one card face-up and one face-down (the “hole” card).

Initial Decision Making

Once the cards are dealt, players decide how they want to proceed. They can:

  • Hit: Ask for another card.
  • Stand: Keep their current hand.
  • Double Down: Double their bet and receive only one more card.
  • Split: If they have a pair, they can split them into two separate hands.

Dealer’s Turn

After all players have completed their actions, it’s the dealer’s turn to play:

  1. Reveal your hole card.
  2. If the total is 16 or less, hit. If the total is 17 or more, stand.
  3. If you bust (exceed 21), all remaining players win.

Paying Out

When the dealer’s hand is resolved, the outcome is determined:

Condition Payout
Player hand beats dealer 1:1
Blackjack (Ace + 10-value card) 3:2
Tie Push (no one wins)


Dealing blackjack is an art that combines knowledge of the rules, quick decision-making, and excellent customer service skills. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can ensure a smooth and engaging experience for players at your table. Whether you’re working in a casino or hosting a friendly game night, mastering the art of dealing blackjack will make you an indispensable part of any gaming setting.

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