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In Blackjack What Is A Soft 17 & Does A Dealer Have To Hit?

In Blackjack What Is A Soft 17 & Does A Dealer Have To Hit?

Ever found yourself at the blackjack table, faced with a 'soft 17' and wondering what your next move should be? You're not alone. 

This scenario can throw off even seasoned players, stirring a mix of strategy and decision-making. Before diving into whether a dealer has to hit on a soft 17, let's unpack what it actually means. Here at Dove Casino, we will help clear up any confusion and elevate your understanding of the game.

Hard VS Soft 17 Blackjack

Understanding the difference between hard and soft 17 in blackjack can seriously shape your game decisions.

A hard 17 is straightforward. It's a hand that adds up to 17 without an Ace. For instance, a 10 and a 7 together make a hard 17. Here, you have a solid total where the Ace can't change its value to benefit you.

On the flip side, a soft 17 includes an Ace counted as 11. This means, if you're holding an Ace and a 6, you've got yourself a soft 17. The beauty of a soft 17 lies in its flexibility. The Ace can also count as 1, giving you opportunities to potentially add more cards without busting over 21.

The distinction is crucial because it affects your strategy. With a soft 17, you've got room to take a little more risk, considering you might not go bust by taking an extra card. However, navigating this scenario wisely demands a good grasp of blackjack strategy.

Remember, the game's unpredictability means outcomes can vary, and these tips are not guarantees of winning. Always play responsibly and within your limits.

Does a Dealer Have To Hit On a Soft 17?

The rules about whether a dealer must hit on a soft 17 can vary. It all depends on the specific rules of the blackjack table you're playing at.

In some UK casinos, the dealer will indeed hit on a soft 17. This is often denoted on the blackjack table itself, or will be included in the game rules if you're playing online. The idea is that hitting on a soft 17 gives the dealer an opportunity to try and improve their hand.

However, not all tables enforce this rule. Some will require the dealer to stand once they hit 17, soft or not. This can significantly impact your own strategy, particularly when it comes to decisions like standing or hitting on a certain number.

Always take a moment to understand the rules of the table you're playing at. This small step can have a big impact on your choices and potentially, the outcome of your game. Remember, in blackjack, and any casino game, it's important to play smart and within your means.

When Should You Hit On a Soft 17 In Blackjack?

Deciding when to hit on a soft 17 in blackjack can really impact your game. Here's a simple break-down to guide your decision.

First, understand that a soft 17 is made up of an Ace and a 6. This combo gives you flexibility since the Ace can count as either 1 or 11. The question of whether to hit depends largely on the dealer's upcard.

If the dealer shows a card from 7 to an Ace, it might be a good idea to consider hitting. Why? Because their chances of ending up with a strong hand are quite high, and standing on a soft 17 could put you at a disadvantage.

On the other hand, if the dealer's card is lower than 7, they’re more likely to bust. In this scenario, standing might be a safer bet.

Remember, there's no one-size-fits-all answer in blackjack. It's about playing smart and considering each situation carefully. Always be mindful of your own limits and enjoy the game responsibly.

Is It Better If The Blackjack Dealer Hits or Stands a Soft 17?

Whether it's better for the dealer to hit or stand on a soft 17 really depends on your perspective as a player.

If the dealer hits on a soft 17, there's a chance they could improve their hand, which might not be in your favour. However, it also increases the likelihood of them going bust, which could work to your advantage.

Conversely, if the dealer stands on a soft 17, their chance to improve is off the table, potentially making it easier for players with strong hands to possibly win.

Ultimately, both scenarios require a strategic approach and a bit of careful thought on your end. Each game and table will offer different challenges, but understanding these nuances is key to making informed decisions. Play smart and responsibly, keeping the fun of the game always in view.


Navigating the twists and turns of a blackjack game, from understanding a soft 17 to anticipating the dealer's move, can potentially enhance your playing experience. Keep these tips in mind, play within your means, and remember, every game is a fresh opportunity to apply your knowledge and strategy.

*All values (Bet Levels, Maximum Wins etc.) mentioned in relation to these games are subject to change at any time. Game features mentioned may not be available in some jurisdictions.