Pontoon for Blackjack Players

Pontoon is the British version of the popular card game 21 ”“ better known as Blackjack so if you're a blackjack enthusiast you'll probably end up playing this game at one time or another. If you really want to play it successfully then it is essential to learn a new game strategy that is quite different to the basic blackjack strategy you'd usually employ at the casinos.

Pontoon strategy is based on very different factors and foundations than blackjack strategy so if you stick to what you know and play the same way at a Pontoon table, you'll probably end up losing more than you'd like to and also not achieve the returns that you should on wins.

Here we take a look at the best strategies to use when playing Pontoon so that you can avoid costly mistakes and maximise your winning potential.

When evaluating a hand in Pontoon there are two things that you should be examining:

  1. What the hand total is and whether or not you are holding a soft or hard total - this may sound very similar to blackjack and it is but this is where the similarities end.
  2. Consider the number of cards that you have - this can often be more important that your total because holding 5 cards will give you an automatic win over everything with the exception of natural 21. This is a key factor that most novice and blackjack players overlook as there is no dealer show card in Pontoon.

A key to winning in this game is to know when to double. This should be done when you have four cards (except for when they total 17 or higher) or when you hold three cards with a soft 19, 20 or 21 total. You should also double when you hold three cards totalling hard 9, 10 or 11 but only double two cards with hard 10 or 11 values.

It is also important to note that you can't stand with a total lower than 15 in this game which is the key number for hard hand because you should always stand on 15 or higher if you hold less than four cards in a round. On the other hand, if you are holding a soft hand you should never stand unless you have just two cards totalling 19 or more.

As you can see, these rules are very basic but if you play according to them you will be able to play a solid game of Pontoon by simply hitting in addition to them. Also remember to hit when you have four cards to a hard 17 and stand when you have four cards to a hard 18 or more. And that is pretty much all you need to know about playing Pontoon as a blackjack player. Happy gaming!