Explaining The Soft 17 Rule in Blackjack

You’ll probably note that every blackjack table you access online has the crucial rule “Dealer Stands on Soft 17” written on it. This implies that if the dealer has an ace and other cards that add up to 17, they will draw another card. But there’s more to blackjack than that, as is always the case.

First off, there are many impacts of the soft 17 rule in blackjack. To begin with, both the house edge in the game and the right strategy you should be employing are impacted. For us players, standing on a soft 17 is typically a good rule, but there are a lot more specifics to take into account. Let’s talk about those specifics as well as the nature of the soft 17 rule in blackjack.

What does Blackjack’s Soft 17 mean?

Any hand with an Ace and a total value of 17 is, in brief, a soft 17. An Ace + 6 hand, for example, is a Soft 17. Why does this matter?

Well, under most blackjack rule sets, an Ace can be considered as both 1 and 11. Generally speaking, it begins at an 11 and changes to a 1 if you bust and go above 21. This explains why an Ace is a card that is so strong in all situations. It provides an additional safety measure against busts in addition to being the only means to obtain a blackjack.

There are uniform rules about what constitutes a “soft 17” in blackjack. It always has the same meaning. However, when it comes to a dealer standing or not on a soft 17, table rules can differ.

Soft 17 Rules

Depending on the actions of the dealer, blackjack tables typically have two variations of the soft 17 rules. The dealer must always need to stand on a hard 17. Yet the dealer acts differently in the case of a soft 17.

These days, the dealer is almost always forced to stand on a soft 17 at live casino blackjack tables. Since it’s a somewhat major rules, it’s typically written in the center of the table. It should be noted that certain tables stipulate that the “dealer must stand on all 17.” These tables are the same as those that specify the dealer must stand on a soft 17, as this covers both hard and soft 17. There hasn’t been a rule variant that involves the dealer standing on a hard 17 yet.

In most cases, the dealer hits on a soft hand if the table simply specifies that they must stand on a hard 17. While standing on a hard 17, the dealer hits on a soft 17.

Top Soft 17 Strategy plays

The value of the player’s or dealer’s cards as well as the Soft 17 rule, which decides the dealer’s next action, will all influence the Soft 17 strategy. In another context, the game has set regulations that determine the next move automatically, thus the dealers are not free to decide whether to hit or stand.

The players are free to plan and modify their gameplay in response to the dealer’s upcard, unlike the dealers who are forced to follow a predetermined schedule. There are some universal Soft 17 strategy guidelines that you should always follow. These rules apply to both Blackjack variations where the dealer stands on Soft 17 and tables where the hand calls for them to hit.

Whichever the variation, the following S17 rules can be applied:

  • Hit when your hard 4–8 card is up against the dealer’s A or 2–10 upcard.
  • When you have a hard 9 against the dealer’s A, 2, or 7–10 upcard, hit.
  • When facing the dealer’s A or 10 upcard and you have a hard 10.
  • When the dealer’s upcards are A, 2, 3, and 7 through 10, hit with a strong 12.
  • When the dealer has the A and the 7–10 upcard, and you have the hard 13 or 14, hit.
  • Give up if you have a hard sixteen against the dealer’s A, 9 or 10. Hit
  • Give up when the dealer has 10 and you have a hard 15. Hit if giving up is prohibited
  • When you have a hard nine against the dealer’s three through six, double.
  • When you have a hard 10 or 11 as opposed to the dealer’s 2 through 9, double. If double is prohibited, hit
  • If you have a hard eleven against the dealer’s 10; double; otherwise, hit if doubling is prohibited.
  • Place yourself on hard 17 and higher.

Since the main rule of blackjack in all multideck games is to hit when the dealer has two, seven, or an ace in their hand, these ideas are quite simple to remember. The basic method is essentially the same in soft 17 blackjack.


To succeed when using Soft 17 rules with online in blackjack, players have to know how hands are created and know when to adjust their strategy.

It is important to constantly be aware of the dealer rules when selecting blackjack games. The players will have the advantage if the dealer is required to stand on all 17 hands. The house edge is raised by the Soft 17 rule, which permits dealers to hit on certain cards. As a result, players will have fewer chances to win, particularly if their playing strategies have not been modified to account for this rule.

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