Blackjack is a casino game that involves putting chips into the betting circle and playing against the dealer. It’s played on a semicircular table and overseen by an often stern-looking casino employee called a pit boss. The game uses multiple decks of cards and is one of the most popular card games in casinos. The objective of the game is to have a hand value closer to 21 than the dealer’s without going over. The house edge is low in blackjack, and there are ways to minimize it, including learning basic strategy and using card counting.
A blackjack dealer is responsible for dealing the cards and collecting and paying the bets. He also needs to understand the rules of the game and be able to explain them to players. He also has to be able to deal with the occasional cheaters who try to gain an advantage. A high school diploma is usually enough to get a job as a blackjack dealer.
The game starts when each player places a bet in the betting area of the table. The dealer then deals himself two cards and the players another. The players can choose to “hit” (request more cards) or “stand” (stop drawing) based on a set of predefined rules. The dealer must stand when his cards have a value of 10 or higher and hit when they are lower.
If the dealer has an ace showing, the players can place bets for insurance. These bets are equal to half the original wager and are placed on the insurance bar at the top of the table. If the dealer has a blackjack, the players who paid insurance will receive 2 to 1 on their bets. Otherwise, the dealer will pay off the bets and continue the game.
One of the most important things that a blackjack dealer must know is how to calculate odds. He must be able to count the number of cards left in the deck and determine when the player’s chances of winning are slim. A good blackjack dealer will also keep track of the players’ bets and tally them at the end of each round.
Having the right mental attitude is also crucial for blackjack dealers. They must be able to stay calm and professional during stressful situations. This is particularly true during a blackjack hand when the dealer’s cards are revealed and the players must make decisions quickly.
Most blackjack games are played with six to eight decks of cards at a time. Typically, the cards are dealt face up so that the players can see them. In some cases, the cards are shuffled after each round and re-dealt face down. Players must be able to recognize the cards by their colors and symbols. In addition, they must be able to tell the difference between face and community cards. For example, a pair of sevens is a community card while a four is not. They must also remember how many of each type of card is left in the deck.