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Spanish 21 Blackjack

How to play Spanish 21 blackjack?

Spanish 21 is a table game that was introduced to land-based casinos in 1995. The rules of this game have many similarities to those of its first cousin, classic online blackjack. Although some rules are perfectly identical, others are really specific to this variant. Typically, Spanish 21 uses a table with a format similar to that of the traditional blackjack table. It is played with 6 or 8 decks of cards. However, unlike the other blackjack variants, all 10 are removed from the game (jacks, checkers, and kings remain in the hoof). In other words, this means that 25% of 10-point cards are eliminated from the game!
Double Exposure Blackjack

The Spanish 21 blackjack summarized

  • The game is played with 6 or 8 decks of 48 cards; 
  • The card games used in this variant do not contain a 10; 
  • In the event of a tie on a 21-point hand, the player wins; 
  • The house advantage at Spanish 21 can be reduced by 1% to between 0.4 and 0.76% as soon as a basic strategy is applied.

Spanish 21 VS Classic Blackjack

Where the classic version of online blackjack has been in place since time immemorial, the Spanish 21 variant has only been introduced very recently in online casinos. However, it tends to gain popularity due to its rather advantageous rules for the player. To understand how Spanish 21 works, it is imperative that the player first learns the rules of classic blackjack.

When you start a game of Spanish 21, you will need to place your bets in the table sections provided for this purpose. The dealer will distribute your cards to you. It’s up to you to make the right decision to put the odds on your side and win the round. As in classic blackjack, you can draw an additional card, stay on your game, split your cards, or double your bet.

Spanish 21 rules

As we mentioned in this article, all 10 are removed from the different decks. Although this may prove disadvantageous for players, certain rules have been introduced to compensate for their absence. Here are some of the rules that govern Spanish 21. Make an effort to memorize them before you start a game:

  • A tie on a hand of 21 points is always to the advantage of the player (even on a natural blackjack of the dealer);
  • Some casinos will allow you to double your bet 3 times;
  • Late surrender on the first two cards is possible;
  • The 10 have been removed from the different card decks;
  • The dealer draws an additional card on a 16 point hand but holds his positions on a 17 point hand;
  • It is possible to double your bet after having separated your cards;
  • Players can draw multiple additional cards after splitting aces;
  • The Spanish 21 offers special payouts on certain hands, including 6-7-8 and 21 to 5 cards (Perfect Charlie includes 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7).

Hit, Stand and Split

In Spanish 21, the rules governing the drawing of an additional card, the status quo, or the split of cards are exactly identical to those of classic blackjack. These different decisions can only be made after the distribution of your two initial cards. However, we recommend that you consult our table on the basic strategy at Spanish 21 to guide your decision-making.

Late Surrender Rule

The Spanish 21 gives you the opportunity to give up your hand late. By declaring surrender, you agree to give up half of your stake. Like blackjack Surrender, this rule is very timely for players who find themselves in the midst of highly damaging game setup. By calculating your probabilities of defeating the dealer on his visible card, you can minimize your losses by giving up your hand and recovering half of your initial bet if you feel you have no chance.

Multiple separation rule

In addition to the advantages set out above, note that the Spanish 21 will give you the bonus of splitting your aces, splitting your split hands again, and doubling your initial bets. The late surrender rule also applies after splits and doubling of bets. De facto, if you came to invest a significant amount of money on a particular round by dint of doubling your bets, it is better to have the presence of mind to give up and recover half of your bets in case things go wrong.

Side bets and the super bonus

In addition to the rules mentioned above, Spanish 21 can give rise to bonus games and side bets that you can place during the course of the game. One of the most popular side bets is called ‘Match the Dealer’. Also present in some versions of classic blackjack, this side bet is won by the player if one (or both) of the player’s preliminary cards have the same face value as the dealer’s visible card. However, like most side bets, it is better to do without it to significantly increase your chances of winning. In addition, Spanish 21 is probably one of the few variations of blackjack that offers a great bonus. Even if you only have one in 668,382 chance of getting it in a 6 card deck,

Spanish 21 Strategy

Those interested in blackjack and its variants know that Spanish 21 is one of the most lucrative versions. But to achieve staggering gains, it is obvious that you will have to employ an appropriate strategy. We strongly recommend that you take into account the Spanish 21 strategy chart, which strictly takes its own rules into account. 

Besides, if you compare it to the classic blackjack chart, you will notice small differences. They are partly explained by the withdrawal of the 10. By following this table to the letter, you will have the possibility of reducing the house advantage and of leaving the game with a wallet even thicker than it was at the arival.

Spanish 21 Strategy Chart

We recommend that you do not try to win the bonuses and that you do not place side bets if you have a limited budget. Even if you have the opportunity to surrender to recover half of your initial bet, you will find that the cases requiring you to do so are not as numerous as you might think. 

Under-representing cards worth 10 points reduces the risk of busting. This is why drawing an extra card presents less risk to Spanish 21. Beginners have the annoying tendency to make excessive use of the surrender rule. If you follow this table to the letter, you will see that there is no point in playing the caution card.

Spanish 21 Payments

Blackjack Insurance2: 1
Blackjack 3: 2
5 card hand3: 2
6 card hand2: 1
Hand with 7 or more cards3: 1
6-7-8 or 7-7-7 (with different colored cards)3: 2
6-7-8 or 7-7-7 (with cards of the same suit)2: 1
6-7-8 or 7-7-7 (with spades)3: 1
7-7-7 of the same brand vs. 7 visible from the dealer$ 1,000 to $ 5,000 

The payout table for the Match the Dealer side bet

2 cards of the same suit18: 1
1 card from the same brand (the other one not)13: 1
1 different suit card9: 1
2 different suit cards8: 1

Play Spanish 21 at an online casino

The classic version of blackjack is already highly entertaining in itself. But adding a few quirky rules to it will increase your enjoyment of playing it. This variant has rules that favor the player and has one of the lowest house edges in the casino world. You are likely to appreciate it for its true value! If you want to play it without leaving the comfort of your home, you can do so in one of our online casinos. That said, it is possible that this variant has a different name depending on the company that created the software. Where Microgaming calls it ‘Spanish 21’, it is called ‘Match Play 21’ in Realtime Gaming casinos.
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