Because blackjack has an element of player choice, players can reduce casino advantage by playing optimally. The complete set of optimal plays is known as basic strategy. There are slight variations depending on the house rules and number of decks. The basic strategy table below is for 3 or more decks, dealer stands on soft 17, double on any 2 cards, double after split allowed, dealer peeks for blackjack, and blackjack pays 3:2.

Your hand | Dealer's face-up card | |||||||||
---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|---|

2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | A | |

17-20 | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S |

16 | S | S | S | S | S | H | H | SU | SU | SU |

15 | S | S | S | S | S | H | H | H | SU | H |

13-14 | S | S | S | S | S | H | H | H | H | H |

12 | H | H | S | S | S | H | H | H | H | H |

11 | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | H |

10 | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | H | H |

9 | H | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | H | H | H | H | H |

5-8 | H | H | H | H | H | H | H | H | H | H |

A,8 A,9 | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S |

A,7 | S | Ds | Ds | Ds | Ds | S | S | H | H | H |

A,6 | H | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | H | H | H | H | H |

A,4 A,5 | H | H | Dh | Dh | Dh | H | H | H | H | H |

A,2 A,3 | H | H | H | Dh | Dh | H | H | H | H | H |

A,A | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP |

10,10 | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S | S |

9,9 | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | S | SP | SP | S | S |

8,8 | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP |

7,7 | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | H | H | H | H |

6,6 | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | H | H | H | H | H |

5,5 | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | Dh | H | H |

4,4 | H | H | H | SP | SP | H | H | H | H | H |

2,2 3,3 | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | SP | H | H | H | H |

**S**= Stand**H**= Hit**Dh**= Double (if not allowed, then hit)**Ds**= Double (if not allowed, then stand)**SP**= Split**SU**= Surrender (if not allowed, then hit)