Guide to Blackjack Spilt

Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games, a true staple in both land-based casinos and online gambling sites. Players love it due to its simple gameplay, as it’s probably one of the easiest games to master. One of the reasons behind its popularity is the low house edge. Especially because new players find comfort in knowing the game offers a fair winning chance.

Players can rely on a number of strategies, side bets, and moves when trying their hand at this casino classic.

Today’s article will tackle one of the most famous bets known to blackjack players — splitting.

Keep reading if you’re considering using the split bet yourself one day.

What Is Splitting in Blackjack?

As you may know, the main goal of blackjack is to have a hand whose total amounts to a number closer to 21 than that of the dealer. The point is that neither of those sums goes over 21.

Now, if you happen to have a hand with cards of the same face value, you have the option to split. Some blackjack variants also let players split cards that don’t match in face value if they are still valued at 10. An example of this would be a King and a Queen pair.

What is a Split in BlackjackThe split bet allows players to split their same-value-card hand into two separate hands. The player who decides to split receives an additional card for each of those hands from the dealer. By doing that, they need to place the same bet they have placed at the start of the game. Then, they can play each hand one at a time.

  • Note:Splitting’s main advantage is that with two hands you might get double the winnings. You’ll win twice the money you would have had without splitting if the dealer’s cards are weak.

However, like any other, splitting is not a move that works in every situation. You have to consider many factors before deciding whether this move is a good idea.

Players can base their decision on the dealer’s up card or simply on how suitable the hand is for this move. So, let’s discuss this topic a bit further.

When Should I Split in Blackjack?

Two unwritten rules would be — never split some pairs and always split others. 

For starters, always split the following pairs:

Aces

It makes sense to split a pair of aces because that gives a better chance to come close to a total of 21. You should do this because plenty of cards are valued at 10 in blackjack.

So, the odds will be in your favor if you split more than if you don’t.

Eights

Having a pair of 8s (16 in total) is generally considered a weak hand in blackjack. Plus, even if you hit, you still might be able to bust. So, splitting the eights gives you the best shot at winning.

The splitting suitability, so to say, decreases as we get to the smaller number cards. You’ll need to consider other factors when dealing with cards like these. 

Namely, you should take notice of the dealer’s up card before you decide to split pairs of 7s, 6s, 3s, and 2s. For instance, you can split 7s and 6s when the dealer’s up card has the same value or less. Moreover, you can split 3s if the dealer has a card with a value between 4 and 7.

Finally, the dealer needs to have a card valued between 3 to 7 for you to split a pair of 2s.

Card pairs you should avoid splitting are:

10s

A pair of 10s is a good hand in blackjack. The odds of winning are much better with a pair of tens than with two hands with a 10-number card.

4s

The probability of busting if you have a pair of 4s is small. The most your hand can total after the next hit is 19. This is a solid sum in blackjack, and it won’t make you bust.

However, if you split your 4s,  your odds of winning will decline. You would have to get a 5, 6, or 7 to have a better hand than the pair of 4s.

5s

A pair of 5s gives you a total of 10 — a great blackjack sum. You should avoid splitting 5s because you would end up with a lower-value hand or a hand that will make you bust more easily.

Mind that what we have discussed here is not set in stone. None of these rules can guarantee a win, so you shouldn’t abide by them through and through.

Still, it’s good to be aware of them because they might increase your chances of winning and minimize your potential losses. 

Casino Blackjack Split Rules

You should also know that split rules may vary depending on the casino you’re playing in and the blackjack variant you decide to play.

  • Note: Some casinos allow players to split only 10-value cards of the same rank.

This would you would be able to split two Kings, but not a Queen/Jack pair.

Some casinos have rules regarding whether you can hit, double down, or split again after splitting for the first time.

In addition, some casinos have different notions of a blackjack 21, depending on whether you used a split bet or not.

  • Note: Always make sure to check the rules before you play blackjack to avoid having problems while playing.

Upsides and Downsides of a Split Bet in Blackjack

Splitting in blackjack is supposed to lower the house edge. The bet gives players an additional shot to try their luck at winning. A bad hand may turn into two good ones, and you might earn more, as well. Splitting also allows an opportunity to reduce the amount you can lose if you’re not doing well in the game.

Nonetheless, choosing to split is a risk. Even if you follow the logic behind the bet, the dealer may still have more luck and win in the end.

You might lose twice as much money than you would have had you forfeited the split bet since splitting requires you to double your original bet. So, you should not rush and split if you are unsure of your decision.

It’s easy for new players to get frustrated when they get an unfavorable result with this bet. You can fix this by learning more about the split bet by trying it out yourself. Find a reputable casino with a good blackjack offer and give this side bet a good college try. Practice using the split technique for a couple of hands and see how it goes.

Once you get the hang of it, you’ll better recognize the right time for this blackjack move and feel more comfortable relying on it in gameplay.

About the Author

Author Malik is one of the youngest members of our team and a relative newcomer to the gambling industry. His love for casino gambling came a few years ago when he got a job as a professional blackjack croupier at a local casino, while he also enjoys playing poker with his friends. Malik’s mission at CasinoUSA is to talk about the new casino sites on the block and tell you everything about their bonuses and promotions. His reviews go into the smallest of details so you can know what to expect from a given casino site before you start playing there.