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    How Many Decks are Used in Blackjack?

    Article by : Divya Gandotra Jan 8, 2024

    Blackjack holds a powerful allure for casino devotees, captivating them with its enduring appeal. While the game has been played for centuries, the age-old question of “how many decks are used in blackjack” remains. This query holds weight, as understanding the number of decks in play can greatly impact your odds of success. In traditional blackjack games, casinos typically use six to eight decks of standard playing cards.

    So, when it comes to playing at online casinos, how many decks in blackjack are typically used? Does this align with the number of decks found in traditional brick-and-mortar casinos? Uncover the answers to all questions regarding the number of decks used in blackjack games by delving into this comprehensive article.

    Significance of the Number of Decks

    Every variation of blackjack is played using a different number of decks. But if you are interested to know how many cards in blackjack are used in each deck, the answer remains consistent. Typically, every blackjack deck comes with 52 cards.

    Remember, the number of decks used in a game can greatly affect the house edge. In fact, the traditional house edge of 0.5% is only accurate when playing with a single blackjack deck and favorable rules for the player. As the number of decks increases, the difficulty of card counting also increases, with 1 or 2 decks being the optimal amount.

    But don’t think that card counting is impossible while playing a game of blackjack with multiple decks. While most beginners stick to single-deck strategies, more experienced players have developed effective ways to track cards in games with multiple decks. With practice, beginners can also master these multi-deck strategies and become successful card counters.

    How Many Decks Do Casinos Use for Blackjack?

    Technically, there is no cap on how many decks in blackjack can be used by online casinos. But a greater number of decks definitely makes a blackjack game more exciting. In fact, in most land-based casinos, modern blackjack games usually incorporate six to eight decks. Brick-and-mortar casinos also offer different variations of the blackjack with a varying number of decks.

    How Many Decks Are Available in Blackjack Games at Online Casinos?

    In the world of online blackjack, it’s common to see games played with up to eight decks of cards. But beware, some online casinos have taken it a step further by automatically shuffling a single blackjack deck after each hand. This eliminates any possibility of card counting and may leave players feeling frustrated.

    The reason behind this reshuffling tactic is to create a truly randomized gaming experience. By constantly mixing up the cards, online casinos make it impossible for players to rely on a card-counting strategy.

    But why are aces and face cards so crucial in blackjack? Well, each blackjack deck is made up of a fixed number of these high-value cards. It is possible to count aces as either 1 or 11, while Kings, Queens, and Jacks are always worth 10 points. These key cards can make or break a player’s chances of achieving a coveted blackjack.

    In the world of online casinos, the automatic shuffling and randomization of six decks of cards has become the norm. This means that there are now a whopping 96 high-value cards in play. With so many premium cards in the mix, achieving a strong 2-card hand like blackjack or one close to 21 becomes quite a challenge. Hence, the use of multiple decks in online blackjack significantly tips the scales in favor of the house, resulting in a greater house edge.

    How Many Decks Are Available in Live Dealer Blackjack Games?


    Live dealer blackjack games typically use around 8 decks of cards, similar to those used in brick-and-mortar casinos. However, some games might include 6 decks instead of 8. To ensure the integrity of the game, there are certain rules pertaining to the decks that must be followed in live dealer blackjack.

    For example, the shoe penetration is limited to 50%, and the shoe is changed after only 4 decks have been used. In addition, some tables have auto shufflers to further maintain fairness. Most importantly, before each hand is dealt, the top card or face-down cards are burned or removed from the blackjack deck. This card burning may occur at the start of the shoe or periodically throughout the game.

    Does the Number of Decks Matter in Online Blackjack?

    Alongside all the remaining rules, it is also imperative to know how many decks do casinos use for blackjack. The number of blackjack decks in an online game is extremely crucial because it has an impact on the house edge. Since it has an impact on the house edge, the chance of winning also depends on how many decks in blackjack are used by online casinos.

    When considering different variations of blackjack with identical rules, the optimal choice is consistently the one with the least number of decks. If you come across a game with a single blackjack deck, always try your hands at it. Every seasoned gambler is familiar with the impact of house edge on one’s winning potential.

    The lower the advantage held by the casino, the greater the possibility of achieving favorable outcomes. As the number of decks utilized in a game of blackjack directly impacts the casino’s edge, the single-deck version boasts the most favorable house edge rate. The number of decks and their potential impact on the house edge is as follows:

    Number of Decks House Edge
    1 deck 0.16%
    2 decks 0.46%
    4 decks 0.60%
    6 decks 0.64%
    8 decks 0.66%

    By simply introducing an additional blackjack deck into the gameplay, the house edge increases by 0.3%. However, the impact on the casino’s advantage is minimal when the number of decks is increased even further. While there is a mere 0.04% difference in the house edge between a game played with four and six decks, the difference becomes more significant when you compare a single-deck blackjack game to one with eight decks.

    It becomes evident that the latter results in a 0.5% surge in the house edge. The influence of the number of decks on the house edge is undeniable, making it a key factor and the second most influential rule in blackjack.

    As I have previously discussed, introducing even just one extra deck to the game of blackjack has a significant impact on the house’s advantage. While this alone is a compelling reason for casinos to add more decks, there are also other motives that drive this decision. Regardless of the specific reasons, the ultimate objective remains the same: to give the casino a greater edge.


    When playing the game of 21, the number of decks being used is a crucial factor to take into consideration. This factor greatly impacts the potential return you can receive from the game. In the past, blackjack was typically played with only one or two decks.

    However, with the rise of card counting techniques, casinos have added more decks to the game as a countermeasure. This increase in decks makes it more challenging to count cards accurately. Despite this, if you happen to come across a single-deck blackjack version, it is wise to favor it over versions with multiple decks.

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    Divya Gandotra

    A versatile content developer with a passion for crafting engaging and informative pieces across various domains. With a background in writing and a keen eye for detail, I specialize in creating content that captivates readers and leaves a lasting impression.