Get the Most from Caribbean Stud Poker

 Get the Most from Caribbean Stud Poker

When I started going to casinos, the selection of table games was pretty basic. There were blackjack, craps, roulette and baccarat. Some casinos had Big Six money wheels, and sometimes you’d see Red Dog or other change-of-pace games.
Nowadays, you’d have to add Caribbean Stud Poker, Let It Ride and Three Card Poker to the list of casino standards, along with a growing number of other change-of-pace games. 

The breakthrough game in the mid-1990s was Caribbean Stud, which started a trend that brought stud poker-based games to table games pits. They’re easy to learn and easy to play, always a plus for a casino game looking to attract new players. Caribbean Stud’s basic game has a two-part bet. You ante, then after seeing your five cards and the one dealer card that is turned face up, you may either fold or make a bet double the size of the ante. If the dealer doesn’t have at least Ace-King, it’s a non-qualifying hand, you’re paid even money on your ante and just have the second bet returned. If the dealer does qualify and you have the higher-ranking hand, you win even-money on the ante and are paid according to a pay table on the bet, from even money on Ace-King or better up to 100-1 on a royal flush. 

To get the most from Caribbean Stud, you need to learn basic strategy for when to make that second bet. Here’s a simplified version: Bet whenever you have a pair, or when your hand includes an Ace, a King and another card that matches the dealer’s face-up card.

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