How to Know When to Hit in Blackjack

By James Guill
December 09, 2023

Blackjack is easily the most popular table game on any casino floor or at online casinos. The game is popular because it is fast-paced and one of the easiest games to learn. The top question new players have about the game is when to hit.

You can learn how to hit in blackjack in several ways. These tips apply to both live and online blackjack games. Taking the time to learn how to play the game properly will help you win more money when playing blackjack.


Learn Basic Blackjack Strategy

If you plan to play blackjack seriously, you need to learn strategy for the game. We aren’t going to go over all aspects of basic strategy, but we will give you some basic strategy for hitting in blackjack.

Here is a simple chart to help you know when to hit.

  • 5–8 – Hit
  • 9 – Hit when the dealer is showing a 2 or 7 through Ace
  • 10 – Hit if the dealer is showing a 10 or Ace
  • 11 – Hit if the dealer is showing an Ace
  • 12 – Hit if the dealer is showing 2, 3, or 7 through Ace
  • 13–16 – Hit if the dealer is showing 7 through ace
  • 17–21 – Stand

Get a Blackjack Strategy Card

Knowing when to hit is only one skill you have to master. You also need to know the best times to double down and when to split. Some of you may find it a bit challenging at first to keep all of these rules straight.

Fortunately, there are no rules preventing you from using a blackjack strategy card when playing. You can find these cards easily online by doing a Google search or purchasing a physical card for your trips to a live casino.

Yes, you can use a strategy card inside a live casino. A strategy card does not eliminate the game’s house edge; it only helps you reduce it.

This is a marked difference from poker, a game in which you compete against other players as opposed to the casino (house). Naturally, then, using poker strategy aids while playing is not permitted.

Practice With a Blackjack Trainer

Repetition is the key to learning any gambling strategy. One way to build this repetition is to play a blackjack trainer. Some sites like Blackjack Apprenticeship will provide software you can use to improve your game.

You can also download blackjack trainer apps from the Apple Store or Google Play. Blackjack trainers are some of the best gambling apps for learning and improving your game. There are free and paid versions available.

Typically, you will get more out of the paid versions of blackjack trainer apps. The app’s cost will be less than trying to learn via trial and error at real money blackjack tables.


The most obvious way to figure out when to hit in blackjack is to ask someone. If you’re playing in a brick-and-mortar casino, you can ask other players and even the dealer for advice on the hand. This is not against the rules.

Again, you cannot completely eliminate the game’s house edge, regardless of your strategy. Casinos encourage dealers to engage with players and assist. Generally, this keeps players at the game longer and gives more money to the casino.

If you’re playing online and want to discuss strategies with other players, there are numerous gaming forums online. You can also join Facebook groups, ask other gamblers on Twitter/X, or even post some hands on Instagram to get player opinions.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you’re unsure of a play. Everyone has to start somewhere, and you’ll often find that your fellow blackjack players will be happy to help you out.



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James Guill poker author
Written By.

James Guill

James Guill started his poker career playing semi-professionally from 2006 to 2008. In 2008, a colleague suggested he try his hand at poker writing and the rest was history. Since 2008, James has written for numerous publications including PokerNews, PokerUpdate, Ivey Poker, PokerJunkie, PokerListings and PokerNews Australia. James also spent several years providing content for […]

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