Using Surrender in Blackjack

While there are millions of people that understand the basic concept of blackjack, there are a vast number that are not aware that they can surrender in blackjack. This option helps players cut their losses with dignity--and for less cash.

What is Surrender?

The surrender option gives players an opportunity to fold their hand and get half of their bet back. The surrender rule is not available in all casinos and it should be used very sparingly. The idea behind surrender in blackjack is for players to forfeit an impossible hand at a lower cost to them or to gracefully admit that there is absolutely no way they can beat the dealer after a large wager. Although losing any amount of money is never pleasing, being able to hold on to half of an original wager--especially a large one--makes for good money management.

When to Use Surrender

When players are on a winning streak, they are very likely to increase their bets. Specially when playing blackjack. For example, if a player is up to betting $100.00 per hand on blackjack after a winning streak, the stakes are fairly high. Let's say that this player is dealt a stiff 14, 15, or 16 against a dealer's nine, 10, or 11 upcard. The chances here are very slim, and with the surrender rule, the player has a choice. He can take a huge gamble and possibly lose the entire $100.00, or he can surrender and cut his losses at a flat $50.00. Although a $50.00 loss is a bit painful, it is much better than losing $100.00 on a single hand of blackjack.

Using surrender in blackjack should always be a last resort for any player, but it can certainly help players manage their money when they are in an unfavorable situation. Not all casinos acknowledge the surrender rule, however; it is up to the player to find out if it is allowed.