Proper Blackjack Etiquette

Online blackjack doesn't require much in the way of etiquette but live blackjack is a completely different story. In any place where people work together closely, there are bound to be certain unwritten codes of conduct that are used to keep order and sanity among the members of the group.

Blackjack in a casino is no exception to the rule. Not only are you sitting in a close proximity to other people, but you're dealing with lots of money and superstitious people. Blackjack etiquette isn't very complicated so if you follow a few simple rules, everything will go just fine. Most of the time an apology and a laugh will fix any breech of etiquette.

1. Learn the rules before you join a table with other people.

Play for practice money at home or find an empty table at the casino if you're unfamiliar with the game. It's highly frustrating for other people when someone comes in without any preparation whatsoever.

2. Tip the dealer.

The dealer makes a living off tips and it's reasonable to tip the dealer every once in a while, even if you're having bad luck. The dealer doesn’t choose who gets lucky and who doesn't get lucky - his job is to deal the cards and keep the game moving.

3. Know the rules about touching the cards.

If the cards are dealt face up, you're not ever supposed to touch the cards at all. If they are dealt face down, you are only supposed to touch the cards with one hand at a time and keep the handling to a minimum. It's very important that you follow this rule.

4. Don't touch the chips after your bets have been placed.

People try all sorts of funny moves with the chips on the table so casinos don't allow you to touch your chips after your bet has been placed. This rule is strongly enforced by the casino so don't break it.

5. Learn the hand signals.

Hand signals make communication better between you and the dealer. To signal that you wish to stand, just wave your hand back and forth over your cards. If you want to hit, point at your cards. If you want to double or split, place an additional bet next to your original bet.

6. Don't berate the other players.

A lot of people think that a bad blackjack player can ruin the odds for everyone else but that is actually a myth. Bad blackjack players don't mess anything up so don't berate them for making bad moves. Even if it did mess up the game, it would be rude to berate them because it’s a public game and everyone has the right to play how they want.

7. Don't blame the dealer or ask the dealer for help.

The dealer takes enough heat from losing players already so don't add to his stresses. The dealer doesn't choose who gets which cards. All the dealer does is take the bets, count up the hands and keep the game moving at a quick pace. Asking the dealer for advice is also bad because dealers don't want to be blamed when things don't go in the player's favor.

8. Don't drink and smoke excessively at the table.

Take your smoke breaks outside and don't drink too much at the table. Think about the other players at the table. Drunk blackjack players are a pain because they often hold up the game and annoy everyone at the table.

9. Pay attention to the game.

Your fellow blackjack players will appreciate it if you pay attention to the game. It slows up the game when inattentive players have to be reminded that it's their turn.

10. Be a courteous spectator.

If you want to watch a blackjack table, be respectful of the players who are actually playing at the table. Don't distract them by standing too close to them or talking to them.