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Your Blackjack Hand: 15 or 16 with Surrender

Posted by blackjackguru on June 19, 2009

Surrender – a Special Case of Basic Strategy:

In some casinos, common in Las Vegas but not in Atlantic City or in Canada, the Player can surrender rather than playing the hand that has been dealt. The cost of surrender is half the wager placed. Surrender is more advantageous than playing the hand for certain dealer upcards, and if available, should be used.

The most common type is Late Surrender which means the Player may surrender only after the dealer peeks for blackjack.

The surrender for basic strategy, multi-deck, dealer stands on soft 17 are as follows:

6 decks, S17, DAS, Late Surrender, Peek
Estimated casino edge for these rules: 0.35 %
Dealer Upcard
Your
Hand
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 A
15 S S S S S H H H R H
6 decks, S17, DAS,  Late Surrender, Peek
Estimated casino edge for these rules: 0.35 %
Dealer Upcard
Your
Hand
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 A
16 S S S S S H H R R R

S = stand, H = hit, R = surrender.

Your 15 vs Dealer 10. If you are allowed to surrender, give up your 15 against the dealer’s 10 and get half your wager back. That is better mathematically, because you will lose less in the long run, than facing the ugly hit. If no surrender is available, then you must hit and expect to lose in the long run.

Your 16 vs Dealer 9, 10, A: By experience you know that 16 is the worst total for you. It is so poor, especially against dealer 9, 10, and A, that you are better off surrendering against these strong upcards if available, in order to lose less in the long run. If no surrender is available, then you must hit these hands and expect to lose in the long run.

Common Loser Mistakes:

Some loser players, and mostly men, think Surrender is a sign of weakness. They say “if I’m here to play blackjack, I’m never going to surrender.” Ignore them, and protect what’s yours.

Did You Know..?

Early Surrender is rare, giving the Player the greatest advantage to surrender before the dealer peeks for blackjack. Sometimes when an Ace is showing and the dealer is a newbie, you can ask when you have 16 “can I wait until you peek for blackjack, or do I have to surrender now?” Sometimes they say in ignorance that you have to surrender now, giving you a free Early Surrender advantage!

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