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Blackjack Slang Terms & What They Mean

Blackjack Slang Terms & What They Mean

Welcome to the world of blackjack, a popular card game that not only tests your strategic thinking but also has its own unique lingo. Whether you're a novice or just curious about the game, understanding blackjack slang terms can be helpful in navigating the game more effectively. 

Here at Egypt Slots, we'll decode some of the most common terms used at the blackjack tables. So, let's shuffle through the jargon and help you approach the game of blackjack with more confidence. 

What Terms Are Used In Blackjack?

Blackjack is filled with unique terminology that can be confusing and overwhelming to the uninitiated. That's why we are going to go through some of the most common terms. Let's begin.


In blackjack, the "Anchorman" refers to the player seated at the last position of the table, to the dealer's right. This player is the last to act before the dealer, making decisions that can influence the outcome for the entire table. 


"Bankroll" refers to the total amount of money a player has set aside specifically for playing the game. It's important to manage your bankroll wisely to ensure you can keep playing comfortably without risking more than you can afford. 


The term "blackjack" refers to the best hand possible: an ace paired with a 10, Jack, Queen, or King. This hand totals 21, usually resulting in an immediate win and typically pays more than other winning hands. 

Burn Card

A "burn card" is the first card taken from the deck after shuffling and set aside, face down. This practice is meant to deter cheating by ensuring the top card is not visible to any player. 


To "bust" means to exceed a total of 21 with your cards. This results in an immediate loss, regardless of the dealer's hand. Managing your card values to avoid busting is a key part of the game strategy. 


A "box" refers to the designated playing area on the table where a player places their bets and receives cards. Each box represents one playing position against the dealer. 

Cold Deck

A "cold deck" is slang for a situation where the cards seem to be unfavourable, leading to consistent losses. It implies that the deck is not yielding good hands for the players. 

Colour Up

To "colour up" means to exchange smaller chip denominations for larger ones. This typically happens when a player is leaving the table and wants to consolidate their chips for easier transactions. 

Cut Card

A "cut card" is a plastic card used to cut the deck of cards after shuffling. The dealer inserts the cut card into the deck, and when it is reached during gameplay, the cards are reshuffled. This practice helps maintain the randomness of the game. 

Ace Poor Or Rich

A deck is described as "ace-rich" if it contains a higher-than-average number of aces, which is advantageous for players. Conversely, an "ace-poor" deck has fewer aces than usual, reducing players' chances of hitting a blackjack. 


"Discards" refer to the cards that have already been played in previous hands and are set aside until the next shuffle. These cards are typically placed in a discard tray on the table. 


"Monkey" is a slang term players use to call for a face card (King, Queen, or Jack) or a ten when requesting another card from the dealer. These cards are all valued at ten, making them desirable for reaching 21. 

Double Down

To "double down" means to double your initial bet after receiving your first two cards in exchange for receiving just one more card. This move can significantly increase your winnings if used wisely when you have a strong hand. 

Five-Card Charlie

A "Five-Card Charlie" refers to a hand that consists of five cards without busting (exceeding 21 points). This hand often results in an automatic win for the player, depending on the casino's specific rules. 

House Edge

The "house edge" is the statistical advantage that the casino holds over the players. It represents the percentage of each bet that the casino expects to keep over the long run. Understanding the house edge helps players gauge their potential loss over time. 

Even Money

"Even money" refers to a type of payout. If a player wins a game but doesn't have a blackjack (2-card hand totalling 21), then they win a payout of 1:1 (even money). 

Flat Betting

"Flat betting" means consistently wagering the same amount on each hand without varying the bet size, regardless of winning or losing streaks. This strategy is simple and helps manage the bankroll by minimising potential losses. 

Soft Hand

A "soft hand" is a hand that includes an ace counted as 11 without exceeding 21. This gives the hand flexibility because the ace can also be counted as 1, reducing the risk of busting when taking additional cards. 

Hard Hand

A "hard hand" is any hand without an ace counted as 11. This means the hand could have no ace, or it has an ace that must be counted as 1 because counting it as 11 would cause the total to exceed 21. These hands are less flexible and carry a higher risk of busting. 


To "hit" means to request another card from the dealer. Players typically hit when they believe an additional card will bring them closer to a total of 21 without busting. This is one of the fundamental decisions in the game. 

Surrender / Late Surrender

"Surrender" allows a player to give up half their bet and end the hand immediately after the initial deal. "Late surrender" occurs after the dealer checks for blackjack but before the player has played their hand. This option can minimise potential losses in unfavourable situations. 


"Insurance" is an optional side bet offered when the dealer's upcard is an ace. This bet pays 2:1 if the dealer has a blackjack. Players can bet up to half their original wager on insurance as a way to protect against a dealer blackjack. 

Multi Deck

"Multi-deck" refers to the use of more than one deck of cards during the game, typically ranging from two to eight decks. This method is used by casinos to make card counting more difficult and to increase the house edge slightly. 


To "split" means to divide a hand of two cards of the same rank into two separate hands, each with its own bet equal to the original bet. This option allows players to potentially double their winnings or losses, depending on the outcomes of the new hands. 


To "stand" means to refuse any additional cards from the dealer. Players choose to stand when they believe their current hand is strong enough to win or when there's a high risk of busting if they take another card. This decision concludes their turn. 


A "toke" is a tip given to the dealer by a player. Tokes are usually offered as a token of appreciation for good service or after a player wins a substantial hand. 

Up Card

The "up card" is the card that the dealer deals to themselves face up. This visible card provides valuable information to players, influencing their strategy for the rest of the hand based on the potential strength of the dealer's total. 

Play Blackjack Games Online

Now that you're a bit more familiar with some of the key terms, you may be looking for somewhere to play blackjack games online. Well, look no further than right here at Egypt Slots. 

We have a broad range of online blackjack games that use Random Number Generators (RNGs) to produce random and unpredictable outcomes and ensure a fair game. Not to mention, we have a great selection of live blackjack games that use real dealers shuffling, dealing, and operating the game in real-time. There are a number to choose from, offering different numbers of seats, different table limits, and even some slightly different gameplay aspects. 

Click 'Join Now' and sign up for access to all this and more on our site. And, as always, please gamble responsibly. Winning is never guaranteed, so only bet money you are comfortable losing.