How To Make a Living Playing Blackjack

Table of Contents

It’s only natural that you think you can make a living playing Blackjack. There is no one the popularity and beauty of Blackjack over decades wouldn’t sway. And the casino game still holds its popularity to this day. Whether it’s worth making a living from or not, just keep in mind that it survived banishment.

Yes, do you know that towards the 19th century, Blackjack was banned by the US government? This was because “it’s identified as a corrupt influence and a breeding ground for violent crimes.” Blackjack continued despite this; in fact, its appeal has grown even more. 

The game only became popular again in the 1930s when the government finally gave in. Then, the state of Nevada officially recognized gambling as legal. This marked the genesis of Las Vegas, the pulsating heartbeat of worldwide wagering. The ups and downs of Blackjack’s history make earning a living from it more than just money. It’s a statement about the game’s toughness and influence on gambling. Continue reading to find those keys you are searching for.

Inside the Blackjack Brain

It’s not enough that you have the drive or the will to make a living playing Blackjack. You must be joking if you thought it was. Blackjack requires a combination of skills, just as poker and roulette do. The pros know this. And just before you jump into the skill part of Blackjack and stroll into the casino to play. Do you know the rules so well? I am not talking about the basic rules here, though.

Do yourself a favor and know the house rules. It’s not just about knowing when to double down or split; it’s about understanding why. Also, are you aware there are various forms of Blackjack to explore? 

For the skill part, the first thing is you should be a non-stop learner. Learn the strategies and systems. Observe how the pros do it. Know the hidden corridors and secret chambers of the house. In no time, you’ll find yourself holding a little edge over the house. Moreover, it’s essential to know how to handle your bankroll wisely.

Understand probability and maintain your calm in the face of pressure. All these things? They’re the secret sauce for a successful Blackjack play. So, soak it all in and make it a part of what Blackjack is for you. After all, the MIT Blackjack Team wouldn’t have hit over $50 million if they were panicking and trembling during their games.

Insights from professional Blackjack players.

Learn from George Sawyer - One of the 5 founders of the MIT Blackjack team.

George Sawyer, one of the 5 founders of the MIT Blackjack Team, when asked, “What’s it like to earn a living playing Blackjack?” He replied by saying, “It was very stressful and, at the same time, quite dull.” George Sawyer played professionally from 1979 to 1983, in the good old days when you could rake in some serious cash at the Blackjack table. But sadly, it’s not practical anymore.

Come here, don’t be sad about that. If you still stubbornly feel there is light at the end of the tunnel of blackjack, here is something for you. Interesting tricks from George Sawyer. They are guaranteed to make you feel more confident and put you ahead of other players.

#1. “Dress like you have thousands of dollars to gamble.”

George Sawyer continued that when he was 21, in the “good days” of blackjack, he did something. He had a special dress code when heading to casinos. You would think he had thousands of dollars to gamble at a glance. He would wear Brooks Brothers from sports jackets and slacks or a suit to an expensive tie and leather shoes. George and his team employed the card-counting technique that casinos hate; take note.

His game plan was strategic; he’d hop between different casinos. He would play for about an hour each shift to avoid drawing too much attention. You know, keep the casino folks on their toes.

According to George, if the casino caught wind of your card-counting brilliance. They’d snap your photo and show you the exit. And slam the door on your future gambling endeavors there. Come back, and you might end up with more than just a stern warning. A potential arrest.

Here’s the real deal from George. He said even with stacks of chips worth thousands in front of you, the key is to lay low and blend in. Keep your intentions and actions under wraps. Act as if you’re there for the fun of it. But secretly, you never miss a beat. Oh, and for the booze lovers out there. George’s advice is that you skip the cocktails, opt for a coke, and always toss a tip to the cocktail waitress.

And don’t forget the undercover intel. Know who’s running the show in the pit at your table. And keep an eye out for the sneaky “counter catcher” hanging around.

George Sawyer dropped another nugget of wisdom. “Your average person’s attention span is about an hour. So, when you’re deep into the game, take a breather.”

Learn from the Argument Between Colin Jones and Oliver Galang

This was a tough online argument. It was a clip featuring Oliver that Colin responded to, targeting Oliver. Oliver Galang is the author of “Card Counting: The Real Truth in Blackjack.” Colin Jones, the brains behind Blackjack Apprenticeship, has been in the card-counting game for more than 15 years. He even controlled a multi-million dollar blackjack crew. 

Colin opened his counterargument by boasting, “I bought my house with the money I made from card counting!” He asserted that it is definitely possible to play blackjack professionally. But “it takes hard work, determination and self-control.” Colin claimed that he and his team are a living testimony of playing blackjack for a living. 

Argument 1

Oliver’s argument was founded on the idea that one cannot have long-term wins in blackjack. That the dealer stands just as much chance as you do of hitting 20 or 21. Can’t argue with the logic, Oliver.

But hold on a second; Colin had a comeback that had everyone thinking twice. He pointed out an important detail Oliver seemed to overlook — the player gets paid 3:2 on blackjacks, those sweet 21s with the first two cards. So, while it might seem as if it is a level playing field for 20s and multi-card 21s. The player is actually raking in 50% more for each blackjack than the dealer.

Colin laid it out bluntly. He casually mentioned he would gladly swap an equal number of $100 blackjacks with the dealer throughout the day. Why? Because while the dealer walks away with his $100, Colin pockets a cool $150 for each blackjack. It’s a game of numbers, and Colin knows how to make them play in his favor. 

Argument 2

To Oliver’s second argument. It was a verbal boxing match worth witnessing, seriously. Oliver claimed he lost everything, and Colin didn’t hold back in his response. Colin minced no words. He expressed “sympathy” for Oliver’s losses. But refused to let him dismiss the potential for success outright. According to Colin, it’s not about the impossibility of winning; it’s about personal capability. He told Oliver not to chalk it up to an impossible feat just because it didn’t work out for him.

Oh, no. Colin destroyed Oliver and his skills. He stated that not everyone is cut out for card counting success. He cited various reasons why people fail despite attempting to “count cards.” They included imperfect strategy execution, flawed counting skills, inadequate bet spreads, poor money management, generous tipping, or choosing practically unbeatable games. Colin seemed convinced that Oliver’s “love” for gambling might be the very hurdle preventing him from being a successful card counter.

It was a no-nonsense response that left many pondering the fine line between skill and luck in the world of card counting. According to Colin, it’s not about the cards you’re dealt. It’s about how well you can play them. Colin said more. However, hold on to these points for now.


That was one hell of a debate up there. It almost makes you wonder if Oliver and Colin had some past-life feud going on. Because what an attack on Oliver from Colin! The whole debate was a real mind-bender, with stray bullets of insight flying in every direction. It leaves you with a bunch of questions buzzing in your head. Was Colin just flaunting, or was Oliver playing the excuse card? Could Oliver have been subtly pushing his book? Well, the answers you land on depend on the road you’ve chosen to travel.

And here’s the big one. Can you actually make a living playing blackjack? If your answer is a confident “yes,” well, hmmm, things just got interesting.

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