This article deals with player options with regard to hitting and standing in
Blackjack. Also included are common situations where you will have to make a
decision on whether to hit or stand, and a few notes on splitting.
During the course of a Blackjack game, a player is constantly faced with
numerous decisions with regard to surrendering, splitting, and doubling. For
most players however, the big decision is whether to Hit or Stand. More than any
other move during a Blackjack game, the decision on whether to hit or to stand
is dependent on the player's strategy.
A "hit" is the action signifying that you would like another card. This is a
good option to take when you feel that you have a good chance of having your
hand get close to 21 or actually equal it. Asking for a hit is often done simply
by tapping your cards or the table, instead of actually asking for a hit
A "stand" is when you signify that you would like to stick with your two
cards. This is done when you feel that you already have a good chance of
winning, or when asking for a hit will likely take your total over the limit
resulting in a bust.
It is important to remember that the house odds in blackjack typically start
at around 5.5%. By making the decision to hit or stand effectively, you can
increase your chances of winning by more than 3%.
Below are some common scenarios you may encounter in Blackjack, and how they
will affect your decision on whether to hit or stand.
Dealer has an Ace
In this situation, the cards with a value of 10 (10, Jack, Queen, and King) are
more likely to come up than any of the other cards. The dealer then has a 4 in
13 chance of getting a Blackjack. The dealer also has a good chance of drawing
other cards without getting busted. Your best option is to go for a hit in order
to try to beat what is likely a strong dealer's hand.
Dealer has a 10, J, Q, or K
In this situation, the dealer has a 1 in 13 chance of getting a blackjack and a
4 in 13 chance of getting a 20. Just as in the previous scenario, you will need
a strong hand to have a chance of winning, so a hit would be in order.
Dealer has a 7, 8, or 9
This scenario is slightly more favorable for you, as the dealer will not be able
to get a Blackjack. There is a chance that the dealer may get a strong hand such
as a 17 or higher however, so while you should go for a hit, there is a chance
that you will bust.
Dealer has a 4, 5 or 6
This scenario is even worse for the dealer, since a bust is very likely. Your
best option is to double down with a 9, 10, or 11, and avoid busting yourself.
A note on Splitting
- Splits are best done when you get two of the same card.
- Splitting serves to double your bet, since each new hand is equivalent to the
- Splitting can only be done during your first move, or during the first move of
the hand after the split.