How to Play Blackjack Switch

Photo Courtesy (Nevada Casino History)
Blackjack Switch Hands. Photo Courtesy (Nevada Casino History)

Blackjack Switch is a variation of standard blackjack that takes just a few minutes to learn. Of course if you already know how to play blackjack, that's a plus. Like regular blackjack, Blackjack Switch is played with a standard 52-card English deck. There are no bonus cards or jokers used. This is a fun variation of standard blackjack.

How to Play

In blackjack switch, each player is required to make a bet on each of two hands.

The dealer will then deliver two face-up cards to each betting circle and two cards to themselves. One of the dealer's cards will be exposed. Now the fun begins.

At this point the player is allowed to switch their second card on the first hand with the second card on their second hand. For example, if the player is dealt a hard 15 and hard 16 as in the photo above, then the player would switch the ten for the five and make two hands, a 20 and an 11.

Blackjack switch rules vary, but at most casinos the dealer will hit on soft 17 and stand on hard 17. When the dealer shows an ace-up they will offer insurance, and a dealer blackjack beats both player hands unless the player also has a blackjack, in which case the hand is a push.

The Weird Stuff

  • Dealer 22 makes all remaining hands a push
  • Blackjack pays even money

Rules for Splitting Hands

  • Split each hand only once
  • Split aces receive on card per hand

    Rules for Doubling Down

    • Double down on any two cards
    • Double down after a split

    Super Match

    The super match is a side (bonus) bet that pays even money when a player's first two cards are a pair. Three of a kind pays 5 to 1 and two pairs pay 8 to 1. If the player is lucky enough to get four of a kind, the payoff is 40 to 1.

    The super match bonus bet is heavily in the house's favor.

    Blackjack Switch Strategy

    Yes, there are a few things you'll want to consider before playing Blackjack Switch. Since you are in control of your hands, know that you'll want to balance your hands on occasion, while other times it is better to make one very strong hand. With that in mind, you obviously want to make one of your hands a 21, that's best, but what about other hands?

    If the best hand is 21, 20 and 19 follow. Next, a pair of aces are better than 11, 10 or 9. All of these hands are better than an 18 or lower hand, so try for these first. If the dealer is showing a 7 or 8, there's a good chance they have a 10 underneath, so two hands of 17 or 18 is better than one hand of 19 and a hand you have to hit, such as 16.

    If the dealer has a hand they must hit (2-6 showing) or a possible complete hand (9, 10, ace showing), you should try to make one strong hand and one weaker hand you can stand on or hit. Here is an example:

    Dealer Up Card of 8, you hold 6-9 and 8-5. You switch the 5 and 9 to make an 11 to double with and a 17. That's a good switch! Now suppose the Dealer's Up Card is 10 and you hold 10-7 and 8-10. In this case, it's better to switch to make a 10-10 and a 7-8, even though you'll have to hit the 15.

    This makes one strong hand and a weak one you might improve with a third card. Use this thinking to improve your odds of winning at least one hand when you are faced with a 9-10-Ace Dealer Up Card.