How to play Down Under Blackjack


How to play Down Under Blackjack

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Down Under Blackjack is one of the newest Blackjack variations to land on casino floors in recent years and offers players a unique twist on traditional blackjack. In Down Under Blackjack players can see what the dealer has “Down Under” before they decide how to play their hand! On each hand dealt the player will have the opportunity to see the range of the dealer’s holecard and whether that holecard is Small (2-5), Medium (6-9), or Large (10-A) before making choices on if they should hit, stand, split or double down! How does the Down Under advantage change the way you should play? Read on and find out. If you are familiar with blackjack you’ll understand Down Under Blackjack fairly quickly.

If you need a refresher on the rules of regular blackjack, watch our How to Play Blackjack Video.< Let’s get down to business and explain why you’ll want to play Down Under Blackjack, which can only be found online at DraftKings Casino.

The Down Under Advantage


As any blackjack player can tell you, one of the most frustrating parts of the game is when you make a series of great decisions about how to play your hand, only to find out that you would have played your hand completely differently if only you had known what the dealer had in the hole. Down Under Blackjack eliminates this frustration by giving players the range of the dealer’s down card on each and every hand you play! How does it work? Each time a hand is dealt, the card will be placed into one of three boxes which will tell you as the player the range of the dealer’s holecard.


While these three hands may not look the same, in each of these scenarios the dealer can have a total of 15 and be likely to bust!

The Small Box


When the dealer’s hand lands in the small box we know that the card in the hole is a 2,3,4 or 5. The biggest advantage in this situation happens when the dealer’s upcard is a ten value. Due to knowing the range of values for the card Down Under, the player knows the dealer doesn’t have a made hand and will be required to draw at least one card. Use this situation to your advantage and double down on hands you might only hit on in regular blackjack.

When the hole card lands the dealer’s hand in the Small box, take advantage! Due to the high probability of the dealer busting, the proper strategy move with a total of 9 against a ten in the Small box is to double down!

The Medium Box


The Medium box allows the player to see some of the juiciest, most favorable situations available in Down Under Blackjack. Any 7 upcard in the Medium box is the best possible dealer hand the player can see! Why is a Medium 7 so good? Because the dealer’s range total is 13-14-15-16, all busting hands! In this situation the player should explore the majority of their splits and double down aggressively to get as many bets on the table as possible (within reason of course). The strategy chart against a Medium 7 (available on the pay table) shows that players should split all pairs except 5-5 (double instead), double on all totals of 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11, and to double down on all soft total hands 13-20.

When you see 7 in the medium box don’t be afraid to double down and split!

The Medium box also has some cautionary information to share with the player. An Ace in the Medium box indicates to the player that the dealer has a hand of 17,18,19 or 20 and won’t be drawing. In this situation the player should continue to hit until they make a hand of 17+ since we know the dealer’s hand is at least 17.

The other Medium box situation the player should be on the lookout for is a 2 as the upcard. This situation mirrors the 6 in the blue box and gives the dealer a set of possible total of 8, 9, 10 or 11.

The Large Box


The Large box gives a different type of Down Under information that is also valuable to the player. While the Large box contains five different card values, since the Ten, Jack, Queen, and King are all counted at 10 in blackjack, the large box only can really display two different dealer hand total values. For example, if the dealer has a 7 as their upcard and the hand lands in the Large box, their total can only be 17 or 18. While the dealer having a Large card in the hole is rarely great news for the player, when the dealer has a busting upcard you’ll know that 80% of the time, the hole card is a ten!

A hand landing in the Large box tells you the hole card is going to be a 10 value 80% of the time. Lower value dealer up cards allow you to split and double with confidence.


Big up cards in the Large box make your decisions easy by telling you when the dealer has a standing hand. When the dealer has a Large value card up AND down, and doesn’t have a blackjack, we’ll even show you the dealer’s hole card! In this hand, the proper play is to hit a 19 as it’s the only way to make a winning hand.

The Rest of the Rules

The good news is that the rest of the rules are similar to regular blackjack. Blackjacks still pay 3 to 2, pairs can be split three times to make four hands (excluding aces which can only be split once and get one card each, just like regular blackjack), players can double down on any two starting cards and double after splitting. Like regular blackjack, players will have the option to take insurance when the dealer’s up card is an Ace. The offer for insurance will happen before the dealer’s Down Under card range is determined. Due to the extra information available in Down Under Blackjack the surrender option is not available

Unlike regular blackjack, Down Under Blackjack has another unique rule that applies to the dealer’s hand; if the dealer’s final hand total is 22, all player hands that aren’t exactly 21 will push instead of win. If you manage to achieve a total of 21 after doubling or splitting, no worries, all totals of 21 will be paid regardless of how the player achieved the hand.

The Safety Net

Ready to try Down Under Blackjack but worried you’ll make a mistake? Our safety net has been modified to warn you about mistakes before they can be made. While our safety net doesn’t coach you into making the winning move, it will warn you before allowing you to stand on an obviously losing hand (17 against a dealer’s 20 for example) or staying on a hand that can be improved risk free (hard 11 or lower).

Match the Dealer Side Wager


Down Under Blackjack includes an optional side wager known as Match the Dealer. While playing the side wager is optional and doesn’t affect the main game, there are lots of good reasons to give it a try. 


Players may bet that either or both of their initial two cards will match the dealer’s upcard. A player who has placed the base game wager may make an additional Match the Dealer wager. 

Tips and Hints

Just like in regular blackjack, your chance to win depends on the total of your hand and the final total of the dealer’s hand. You should look for opportunities to increase your wager when the dealer has a weak hand by taking advantage of the player-friendly splitting and double down rules offered in Down Under Blackjack. 

Take advantage of the opportunities presented to you in Down Under Blackjack. While the perfect play won’t always result in a win, it doesn’t mean you made the wrong move. The strategy charts for Down Under Blackjack are available in the pay table of the game - so if you aren’t sure what to do, you can always look up the right play. As in regular blackjack, you’ll sometimes have to choose between two tough options. While it’s never fun to bust and then find out that the dealer would have busted had you not drawn a card, you should never be afraid to take a card or make the right move. In the long run making the right play will deliver better long term results!

Hit those losing hands! When the dealer is showing a 7-8-9-10 in the Large box or a Ace up in the medium box, know that they will always have a standing total and never have to draw. While it seems odd the first time you have to hit a hard 18 or 19 to have a chance to win, it’s better to go down swinging than to stay against a hand you can’t ever beat!

Now, you know how to play Down Under Blackjack. As you can see, there are a ton of fun player-friendly rules that have made this popular blackjack variant a hit on casino floors around the world. Now it’s time to give it a try yourself.

Down Under Blackjack

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Check out our casino blog for all the tips, tricks and strategies you need to take your gameplay to the next level.