Blackjack Surrender is a game variant which is highly popular with beginners due to an option players can use to quit the game and keep a half of their wager. If you are on a losing streak and you have been dealt another bad hand, this option can help you save yourself. Since the concept of surrender in Blackjack seems to be confusing for many players, in this article we will present you the basic rules, odds and situations in which you should go for this option.
When it comes to the rules and gameplay, Blackjack Surrender does not differ much from the standard version of the game. There may be certain modifications such as in a number of decks in play, but typically the game uses six card decks. After the bets are placed, both the dealer and player are dealt two cards. At this point of the game, the player can place an Insurance side bet if the dealer has an Ace. It pays 2:1 in case the dealer has a blackjack.
Other moves the player can make are standard – hit, stand, split and double. In case their cards are bad, the player can make use of the surrender rule and lose the game while keeping a half of their initial bet. As for other rules, they include the dealer standing on soft 17 and the player doubling on the first two cards and after splitting. In some games, the player can split only once.
When the game uses six decks and the dealer stands on soft 17 while the player is allowed to resplit for four hands and to resplit Aces, the house edge is 0.25%. If the player is not allowed to resplit, the house edge is higher, 0.39%.
The surrender rule comes in two forms: early and late. In both cases, the player loses a half of their original bet. Yet, there are certain differences. Early surrender is the most favourable for the player as it allows them to use it right after the cards are dealt. That practically means that with early surrender the player can quit before the dealer checks whether they have a natural.
Unlike early surrender, with the late surrender rule, you have to wait for the dealer to check if they have a natural blackjack. Here is the biggest difference between these two: if the dealer has a natural, you cannot use surrender and you use the whole bet. You can easily tell that early surrender is more favourable to the player and it reduces the house edge by 0.63%.
You should use surrender when you think that you don’t have a hand good enough to beat the dealer. One of the situations in which you can go for this option is when you have a hard 16 while the dealer has 9, 10 or Ace. When you have a hard 15 and the dealer has 10, surrendering is a reasonable move as you can easily go bust and lose a whole bet.
If you have an opportunity to use early surrender, it is always a better option than late surrender as with the latter you risk to lose an entire bet amount when the dealer hits a natural blackjack. The surrender rule should not be mixed up with an Insurance bet. The difference is obvious: it doesn’t require an additional bet to make use of it.