There are many things that make blackjack so attractive and popular, but what most people like about the blackjack casino game is the hit or stand decision. Blackjack is a simple game where players are trying to get a hand that has a higher total value compared to the dealer’s hand. Of course, the total value must be equal or lower than 21 points.
In case the player (of the dealer) goes over 21, they will lose the hand. Once the cards are dealt, the blackjack game player has a few options like splitting, doubling, purchasing, insurance, and surrendering. But, the real excitement comes from the basic decisions you have to make – Hit or Stand. This is the most important decision, all blackjack players have to make. Before we analyze these two options you have, it is better to make sure that you understand the following blackjack terms:
The value of the card is like this:
9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 – each of these cards is worth the same number of points as displayed on the card.
King, Queen, Jack, 10 – each of these cards is worth ten points.
Ace – they are worth 1 or 11 and it all depends on whether one of these values is better for the player’s hand.
If you choose Hit, you will get an additional card that can help you improve the total value of your hand. So, once the initial two cards are dealt you can choose hit. In case you hit and go over 21, then you bust and the dealer is a winner. You can ask for more than one additional card.
In case you opt for Stand, this means that you are satisfied with the total value of your hand and you are prepared to view the dealer’s covered card. There are no other actions you can take once you decide to stand.
According to many experts, knowing when to hit or stand is crucial for your blackjack success. Of course, money management and card counting are important too, but learning when it’s best to ask for a card and when your cards are good is crucial. Now here are some basic blackjack game tips that can help you.
When to hit?
Typically, players that are not satisfied with their initial hand choose to hit. This should be the only reason why you are doing this. In other words, if you believe that your initial hand is strong, then you should not test your luck by asking for another card. The basic goal in blackjack is to get 21 or to be as close as possible to this number.
It is good to know that the average winning hand in this game is 18.2. So, your objective should be to enhance your hand as close as possible to 19 (not 21). This might sound odd to you, but this is what blackjack probability is all about.
If you take a closer look at the most popular blackjack books and guides, you will notice that they recommend players to stand when they have a total value of 17 or more. Of course, they are talking about the initial hand. This is quite logical because there is a good chance that you will go bust if you ask for another card when you already have a hand that has a value of 17 points.
Another important thing in this process is to consider the hidden card of the dealer. The best idea is to think that they have a ten, all the time. Of course, this won’t always be the case, but the fact is that the cards that are valued 10 points outnumber the other cards. So, if you always think that they have a ten it will be much easier to make your next move – hit or stand.
When to stand?
There are actually two situations in which it’s justified to stand. First of all, you might be thinking that the total value of your hand is probably better than the dealer’s hand. The other situation is when you think that the dealer will bust. In case you are standing for a different reason, you can expect to lose.
Blackjack is a game of luck but it is also a game of mathematics. There are specific mathematical principles that apply to blackjack, so you must take these principles into your blackjack betting strategy. This is the reason why dealers act in the same way when they have specific combinations of cards. For example, they will stand if they have 17 or more or hit when they have 16 or less.
It is a smart move to follow specific rules as a player too. In the case of the dealer, he is following casino rules. In your case, it is up to you to follow the rules you’ve set before the game starts. In other words, you must be disciplined and determined.
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Hit or Stand in Blackjack: Tips
First and foremost, you must hit when you have a total value of 11 points or less. This is quite logical because you can’t bust when you have 11. And vice versa – when you have 17 you should stand because of the high chances to bust.
Next, think about the hidden card of the dealer. In case they have a 10, Jack, Queen or King, you should consider the option that they have 21 or 20. Always hit when you have 16 in a situation like this.
On the other hand, if the dealer has 7, 8, or 9, they usually have a strong combination. So, if you want to have a good chance against them, you will need a 10 or an Ace. Feel free to hit in a case like this or even double your bet. But, if they have 4, 5 or 6 the situation is different. Namely, in this case, they will probably bust. So, if you have an Ace, 10 or 9 feel free to double down.
Learning blackjack terms is not enough for winning this game. You must also develop a good strategy which will help you decide when to hit and when to stand in this game.