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Surrender Blackjack Hand – Casino Gimmick or Wisdom of Champs?

Jun 27, 2011

Surrender in blackjack casino
Blackjack Surrender

Casinos make tons of money off blackjack players since very few know when to surrender in blackjack and when to keep on winning.

Let’s face it, nobody want to be a quitter. Giving up your hand at blackjack card games in exchange for taking back half of your bet just seems like a wimpy move. Something a coward would do.

Especially if you came to the casino to show your blackjack skills in front of your buddies or someone you’re sweet on. It almost instinctually feels as if you’re running away from a fight without even trying to take that one swing first. Who knows? You may just get lucky!

This is precisely the type of wrong thinking that loses money. “It is better to take one step backwards and two steps forward than to trip on your first step, “was the alleged advice of blackjack champ Ai Weiwei when dealing with the psychological aspect of surrendering in blackjack. Necromancers and fortune tellers didn’t come up with these blackjack strategies. Powerful computer simulators running millions of blackjack hands have conclusively proven these strategies as correct.

Surrender in Blackjack, a casino gimmick?

It’s most certainly not a casino gimmick. Betting on progressive jackpot for a few extra dollars in blackjack card games is a casino gimmick. Giving up your cards in blackjack (surrender) is a defensive strategy and is definitely used more frequently than insurance. (Should I ever use insurance in a blackjack game?)

Casinos happily offer the surrender option despite losing a little edge because the vast majority of players have no idea when the right time to surrender is. While the 5% of players use the surrender in blackjack option correctly the other 95% more than make up for it.

As you will see in the next part, it is a bit complicated, especially for first time or recreational blackjack players.

When is it the right time to surrender in blackjack?

Most casinos will allow surrender when the blackjack player has 15 or 16 while the dealer is showing a 9, 10 or Ace. If a pair of eights makes up the 16 in the blackjack player’s hand, it’s a bad idea to surrender. Players are giving up a tiny edge if they do.

This is very general information about a standard 6 deck card game where the dealer stays on soft-17 and blackjack pays 3/2.

  • It is wise to surrender in blackjack if the dealer is showing an Ace and the player has 7-9 or 6-10.
  • It is proper to surrender when the dealer shows a 10 and the player is looking at 7-9, 6-10, 6-9, or 5-10.
  • It is correct to surrender in blackjack when dealer shows a 9 and player’s holding 7-9, 6-10.

Players who practice card counting systems will modify these hands based on how the count is looking. If you are a new player, practice first with some free online blackjack at a proper online casino.

Don’t use those toy blackjack games inside mobile device (unless it’s at a proper mobile casino).



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