How to Play Single Deck Blackjack Online

If you love to play blackjack online, and you’re also looking for the lowest possible house edge, Single Deck Blackjack is the game for you. Single Deck Blackjack has the highest Return to Player (RTP) of all the blackjack variants here at Bodog Casino. That means you can play more hands over longer sessions, giving you the best possible value while you’re at the tables. We’ll show you how it all works in this quick and simple blackjack guide.

Single Deck Blackjack Rules

Single Deck Blackjack is just what the title suggests: You’ll be playing blackjack with just one deck of playing cards in the virtual shoe, as opposed to six decks in our standard blackjack game. This is why Single Deck Blackjack has such a low house edge compared to other variants.

Otherwise, the blackjack rules are basically the same. You’re trying to outscore the dealer without going over 21 points, and you have most of the same blackjack plays at your disposal:

  • Hit: You’ll receive one more card and continue your turn.
  • Stand: You’ll keep what you have and end your turn.
  • Double Down: At the start of your hand, you’ll double your bet, receive one more card, and end your turn.
  • Split: When dealt a pair, you’ll separate your cards into two hands, thus doubling your bet; your turn will continue.

Other than the number of decks in the shoe, the key difference between Single Deck Blackjack and the other variants is that you can’t make the Surrender play at the start of your hand. The dealer also hits on “soft” 17, meaning they have an 11-point Ace in their hand. You can bet anywhere between $1 and $5,000 per hand; split Aces receive just one more card, and you can’t re-split if that card is another Ace.

Single Deck Blackjack Strategy

Because Single Deck Blackjack is a game of strategy as well as chance, you have to play the optimal (aka “basic”) blackjack strategy in order to achieve the lowest possible house edge. There’s a “right” way to play every hand you’re dealt, based on the cards you can see: your cards, and the dealer’s up-card.

For example, you should always double down if you’ve been dealt a hand worth 11 points. This is because you’ll make 21 with your third card if it’s a Ten, Jack, Queen or King. You should also stand every time you’re dealt “hard” 17 (meaning no 11-point Ace) or more, and hit every time you’re dealt anything between hard 4-7. Feel free to use a reputable blackjack chart while you play Single Deck Blackjack at Bodog.

What to do if the Blackjack Dealer Hits Soft 17

Most blackjack games follow the same set of rules, but each one has certain minor differences – like the dealer hitting soft 17 in Single Deck Blackjack. This rule means there will be times when the optimal play will be different than it would be if the dealer stood on soft 17.

For example, let’s say you have a soft 18 at any point during the hand, and the dealer’s up-card is an Ace. In Single Deck Blackjack, the optimal play here is to hit. But if you were playing a variant where the dealer stood on soft 17, the correct play would be to stand.

These blackjack strategy tweaks only come up once in a while. If you’re interested in learning how to play blackjack, consider starting with a simplified strategy that you can use no matter which blackjack variant you’re playing. The house edge won’t be quite as small as it would be playing the optimal strategy, but it’ll be very close. As you get better at the game, you can learn each of the tweaks and apply them one by one to build your perfect blackjack strategy.

Single Deck Blackjack Payouts

All of these blackjack strategies are based on the cards you can see, and the payouts you receive when you win a hand. Like most variants, Single Deck Blackjack pays even money for winning hands – unless you’re dealt a “natural” 21 (aka “Blackjack”) right at the start. Those hands pay out at 3 to 2.

If you split Aces in Single Deck Blackjack and you’re dealt a 10-value card, that’s 21 points, but it’s not a natural; you’ll be paid even money if the dealer doesn’t also have 21. Ties like this are graded as a push, all monies returned.

Single Deck Blackjack also includes the Insurance bet, which you can make at the start of the hand if the dealer’s up-card is an Ace. This side bet is not part of the basic Blackjack strategy; it pays out at 2 to 1 if the dealer happens to have Blackjack.

Play Blackjack at Bodog Casino

Single Deck Blackjack may be the easiest of all the Blackjack variants at Bodog Casino, but you’ll get even more bang for your buck if you play all the different games on our menu. Try adding more decks to the shoe with Double Deck Blackjack and Classic Blackjack – or try European Blackjack, where the dealer only receives the single up-card at the start of the hand. And if you enjoy making side bets at the casino, Perfect Pairs pays out as high as 25 to 1 when you’re dealt a pair. Try them all for free using the Practice Play mode and see which blackjack games you like the most here at Bodog.