Blackjack Strategy: How to play 16 against dealer 10

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Most of the basic Blackjack playing strategy is logical to players. However, some of the plays are not so intuitive, which is the reason why players misplay them. In this video, we’ll show you three non-intuitive basic strategy plays.


Having a 16 in blackjack when the dealer shows a ten-value upcard is a poor hand because your chances of winning are not very good.

However, by executing the following strategies you can minimize the damage and lose less in the long run.

Let’s look at some different 16s that you could get and the best way to play them.

• 10-6 (Hard 16)
• 5-4-7 (Multi-card 16)
• A-5 (Soft 16)
• 8-8 (Pair of 8s)

If you are dealt a two-card hard 16, your best option is to surrender your hand. When you surrender, you forfeit playing your hand with an automatic loss of half the original bet.

Surrendering your hand makes sense only when your chance of winning is less than one out of four hands. therefore, you will save money in the long run by surrendering the hand instead of standing or hitting.

If the surrender option is not offered, then hitting is the better option. Here again you’ll lose money whether you hit or stand but you will loss less in the long run by hitting.

If you have a multi-card 16 , your best play is to stand. The reason is your hand contains one or more small-value cards that are no longer available in the pack of unplayed cards. These small cards are exactly what you need to make ב pat hand when you hit your 16. The fact that a few of them just landed in your hand is enough to shift the odds toward standing rather than hitting.

When you are dealt a soft 16, you should always hit. That’s because you can’t bust with a one-card draw to a soft 16; therefore it’s worth hitting to try to get to hard 17 or soft 19 or higher.

Most players balk at splitting a pair of 8s, reasoning why throw more money at a bad hand by splitting. But the facts are this: Splitting 8s gives you two decent starting hands, with an 8 on each, which is better than playing out the one hand starting with a dreaded 16. Yes, you’ll sometimes lose both splits but in the long run your combined losses will be less than what you would lose by playing one hand of 16.

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