How To Play A Soft 18
 

Blackjack is one of the most popular casino games in the world, and one of the reasons for this is because it's a relatively simple game to play, coupled with a low house edge. However, playing the perfect blackjack strategy isn't always as simple as it seems. Knowing how to use probability and play certain hands right when they are shown is extremely important in keeping the house edge to an absolute minimum and you can learn the fundamentals of this with our basic blackjack guide. Here, we're taking a look at one of the most commonly misplayed hands – a soft 18. 
 

There are two different types of soft 18 hands: A-7 and A-3-4. The reason why we have differentiated between the two types is because the strategy for both is different. 
 


Soft 18 Playing Options


When you're dealt a soft 18, you have the choice between three different playing options:

Hit

Stand 

Double Down

Deciding which option to choose will depend on the variables of the hand – does the soft 18 hand consist of 2 or more cards, how many decks you are playing with and the dealer's rules on the table: whether they're standing or hitting on a soft 17. 

In both land based and online casino games, there are a number of different strategies that you can consider when it comes to a soft 18.
 

Multi-Deck Games
 

If you're playing with a double deck or a multi-deck of cards, and the dealer is standing on a soft 17, there are a number of different things that you can do, dependant on what the dealer's upcard is showing. 
 

If the dealer shows a 3, 4, 5, or 6 – Double Down    

If the dealer shows a 2, 7 or 8 - Stand

If the dealer shows a 9, 10 or Ace – Hit
 

However, there is a difference between when a dealer stands or hits on a soft 17. If the table you are on, specifies that the dealer must hit on a soft 17, then you should double down against a dealer's upcard of 2 as well as a 3, 4, 5 or 6. 
 

Single Deck Games 
 

If you're playing with a single deck, then the way that you bet will be different, if the dealer is standing on a soft 17.
 

If the dealer shows a 3, 4, 5, or 6 – Double Down                             

If the dealer shows a 2, 7, 8 or Ace  - Stand

If the dealer shows a 9 or 10 – Hit
 

If the table you are on, specifies that the dealer must hit on a soft 17 on a single deck game, then you should hit on a dealer's Ace rather than standing on it as part of your strategy. 
 

When it comes to playing this notoriously misplayed hand at our blackjack tables here at Ladbrokes Casino, it is important to remember these key table features: how many decks you're playing with and the specified dealer's rules. If you do not take these into account, you could find that your new strategy doesn't work after all. Following this closely however, along with the basic blackjack strategy chart that you can find in our blackjack e-book, will get you well on your way to beating the dealer!