What Is Bust It in Blackjack?

If you’re a fan of blackjack, you’ve probably heard of the term “bust.” In this article, we’ll go over what bust means in blackjack and how it affects your game.

What is Bust in Blackjack?

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Bust in blackjack refers to when a player’s hand exceeds a total value of 21. When a player busts, they automatically lose the game regardless of the dealer’s hand.

For example, if a player has a total value of 22, they have busted and lost the round. However, if the dealer also busts, then the player will still lose since they busted first.

How Does Bust Affect Your Game?

Understanding bust is crucial to playing blackjack since it can greatly affect your strategy. If you have a hand that is close to 21 but not quite there yet, it may be tempting to take another card. However, if that card puts you over 21 and causes you to bust, then you lose the round.

On the other hand, if the dealer has a weak upcard (2-6), it may be worth risking taking another card even if you’re close to 21 since there’s a higher chance that the dealer will bust.

PRO TIP:In Blackjack, ‘Bust It’ is a term used to describe when a player has gone over the 21 limit and has no chance of winning. When this happens, the player loses their bet and the round ends. It is important to remember that Bust It should be avoided at all costs as it can quickly result in losses.

Busting vs Losing

It’s important to note that busting is different from losing. While both result in losing the round, busting occurs when your hand exceeds 21 while losing can occur for other reasons such as having a lower value than the dealer’s hand.

Strategies for Avoiding Bust

One common strategy for avoiding bust is called basic strategy. This involves following a predetermined set of rules based on your hand value and the dealer’s upcard. For example, basic strategy may dictate that if you have a total value of 12-16 while the dealer has an upcard of 2-6, it’s best to stand rather than risk taking another card and potentially busting.

Another strategy for avoiding bust is to use a card counting system. Card counting involves keeping track of the cards that have been dealt and adjusting your bets and strategy accordingly. By knowing which cards are still in the deck, you can make more informed decisions about whether to take another card or not.


Bust is an important concept to understand in blackjack since it can greatly affect your game. By knowing how bust works, you can make better decisions about when to take another card and when to stand. Using strategies like basic strategy and card counting can also help you avoid bust and improve your overall chances of winning at blackjack.