What is the difference between “hard” and “soft” blackjack hands?

The difference between a “hard” and “soft” hand in blackjack is one single card.

For those who are just starting out to learn to play and love blackjack, some of the slang used through the game might sound weird or even funny at times, like for instance “soft and hard hands”. These are the types of hands you could get from the dealer in any given play, let’s understand how they behave in the game:

The difference between a “hard” and “soft” hand in blackjack is one single card. The Ace. If one of the two cards you’re dealt is an Ace, you have a “soft” hand. Why? An Ace card can either be a 1 or an 11 which means that you have quite a bit of liquidity as far as what you can play based on the card the dealer holds.


If you have an Ace and an 8, your hand could either be 9 or 19. If you have an Ace and a 4, your hand could either be a 5 or a 15. With an Ace the risk is less which is why it’s considered “soft.” A “hard” hand in blackjack means that you don’t have an Ace. With a “hard” hand you are stuck with a rigid hand that cannot be changed. If you are dealt two 5s you have 10. If you’re dealt a 10 and a Queen you have 20. So on and so forth…

It really is interesting to see how one single card can make such a big difference. Want to try your hand at blackjack? Check out the great table games available on Palace of Chance.

Claire Hollows

An activist at heart, Claire has traveled the world using the cheapest methods possible, she has loved every minute of it. Due to her love for traveling she decided she needed a job where she could be free to do what she loves and still make money. In her family there are a few poker players and she picked up the love for the game since she was really young.

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