Strategy for 16 vs. 10 in Blackjack

Blackjack, 16,10, Tables, Chips, Poker

Here’s the lowdown – you’re playing a standard blackjack game, and you’re dealt a seven and nine, giving your hand a value of 16. However, the dealer’s card that’s face up is showing a 10. What do you do in this situation – hit, stand, or surrender?

You don’t want your hand to bust, but there’s also a good chance that having a 16 won’t beat the dealer. It’s one of the most difficult situations in blackjack, which requires you to develop a strategy around it.

In this article, I offer a few betting tips for 16 vs. 10 in blackjack and explain how you can optimize your chances of winning. Many veteran players will handle this particular scenario differently because it’s difficult to decide on standing or hitting.

Limiting Your Losses

The blackjack 16 vs. 10 is one of the toughest situations in the game. You’re in no man’s land because every move can seem like the wrong choice. Furthermore, the 16 vs. 10 odds in blackjack are heavily against you – you’re losing more often than winning.


Both standing and hitting more cards will produce negative results in the long run. Your job should be to limit your losses when it comes to 16 vs. 10 in blackjack. You can’t change your expectations to positive, which is why you aim to minimize the damage.

Choosing to stand when it comes to 16 vs. 10 will bring defeat roughly 77% of the time in most blackjack variants. Deciding to stand will rarely pay off, and you’re almost throwing away your money.

You’re also likely going to bust when you decide to hit. However, you’ll lose about 74% of the time, which is 3% less than standing. This means should be hitting every hand for 16 vs. 10 in blackjack because this is the action that produces better results in the long term.

Play at Casinos That Allow You to Surrender

Many professional players also choose to surrender in blackjack situations involving 16 vs. 10. Surrendering allows you to limit your losses, especially when you know your chances of winning are slim. Knowing when to surrender in blackjack is important.

What is surrender? It’s when you can elect to discard your hand and only forfeit half of your initial bet. You can only surrender before you make another action, like hitting another card. Surrenders are helpful when you’re absolutely certain that you can’t beat the dealer.

Many casinos now are no longer allowing players to surrender in blackjack. Why? It allows them to maximize their profits by forcing players into losing situations. You ultimately want the option to surrender because it affords you more flexibility.

Does It Matter What You Do?

If you decide to hit or stand, you’re losing about 74% or 77% of the time, proving that you can’t really do much with blackjack hands involving 16 vs. 10. Even if you’re someone who refuses to surrender your hands, losing half of your initial bet is preferable to losing automatically.


Forfeiting your money sucks, but you’re actually making the most of a tough situation. The goal here is to extend your gambling sessions by optimizing every hand. Wins and losses are bound to happen – it’s always better not to push your luck too far.

Many players also operate under the principle that what you do doesn’t matter. Your odds of winning are already low, so you might as well take a chance. That’s not a good decision for your 16 vs. 10 blackjack strategy because the times you get lucky and win won’t be enough to compensate for the losses.

More Blackjack Strategy

I encourage you to do a little more research on how to improve your chances of winning in blackjack. This includes learning about the biggest blackjack mistakes to avoid and other general tips for beginners.

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Petko Stoyanov
Get in touch with Petko
About Petko Stoyanov
My name is Petko Stoyanov, and I've been a gambling writer for more than ten years. I guess that was the natural path for me since I've loved soccer and card games for as long as I can remember! I have a long and fairly successful history with English Premier League betting and online poker, but I follow many other sports. I watch all big European soccer leagues, basketball, football, and tennis regularly, and I keep an eye on snooker, volleyball, and major UFC events.