• February 14, 2022
  • Jackie Garcia

Caribbean Stud Poker: Best Combinations and Strategies to Win

The desire to combine a wonderful pastime and make money led humanity to invent various kinds of games. Undoubtedly among those games, the most popular is poker. Different variations have appeared based on classic poker, and one of them is Caribbean Stud Poker. If you have ever tried to play 5 Card Stud, you already have all the skills you need to succeed in Caribbean Stud poker, although there are a few key details you should pay attention to before you sit at the table:

  • Bluffing or cheating in Caribbean stud poker is simply impossible;
  • There are no draws in Caribbean stud ;
  • Players compete against the house and not against other players. Thus each player plays a case by case against the dealer;
  • Like a classic poker, the Caribbean stud poker possesses a deck of 52 cards.

Caribbean stud poker rules. 

The actual rules of Caribbean stud poker are uncomplicated and straightforward for everybody’s perception.

After announcing the start of the round, the player must deposit a mandatory bet that is called “ante.” This is a fee for the right to participate in the virtual casino game. The bet is usually small, ranging from one cent to one dollar, and depends on the casino setting the value on its own. The dealer does not deposit any bet.

The dealer deals 5 cards face down to each player who made the initial bet (ante) on the table.

At that point, the dealer is also dealt 5 cards face down, but with one significant difference:

They turn over one card (usually the last one) to show it face up.

Once this card is flipped, the players, by their cards, may act as follows:

Caribbean stud poker

To fold

A player may refuse to continue the game due to his “weak” hand. In case of a fold, a player will lose the ante bet and be forced to wait until the next hand is dealt to play again. 

To raise a bet. Being confident with their cards, the player calls and raises a bet. Making an additional bet is the only possibility to continue the casino game. An additional bet is usually twice as much as the ante.

Exchange cards

For one ante, a player can make an exchange, which means discarding one card and taking another instead. Such a risk is justified only when there is a real chance to make a solid combination and get a good payout on a bet.

The last option is available only in certain gambling sites, but generally, it is not practiced. 

Other general rules

There are also other general rules, such as the players can play just one hand; therefore, they cannot hide their cards from the dealer. Also, the players are allowed to touch their cards just once to see them and decide about the next move. 

Caribbean Stud Poker: When Does the Dealer Qualify?

After each player at the table has decided to either pay the extra bet or fold, the dealer looks over the whole hand in front of the players, which means the qualification.

To “open” their hand, the dealer must have at least Ace-King or higher ranks. Otherwise, the dealer does not qualify. So, there are 4 possible scenarios at the final stage of the game:

  • The dealer did not make any combinations. The most unfair option for the player is that since only the ante is reimbursed, the bet remains in favor of the online casino. The combination collected by the player also does not matter, even if it is a Royal Flush. A bonus bet on the jackpot could rectify the situation, but it is also risky.
  • The dealer’s combination is better than that of the player. As a consequence, the player loses all his bets and ante.
  • The dealer’s combination is worse than that of the player. Hence, the best option for the player, as the ante is returned and the winnings are paid out according to the coefficients. 
  • Both the dealer and the player have collected an equivalent combination. In this case, the advantage is given to the one who has the highest-ranked card in combination. If there is a complete tie, bets and antes remain in-game and move on to the next round.

Caribbean Poker Combinations and Payout 

Caribbean stud poker

Caribbean stud poker rules include the same combinations as in classic poker. However, only one combination has been added, considered the worst:

  • Ace + king. The minimum set of cards is required for the player’s hand to be worth anything. The payout is only 1:1. Consequently, the bet is returned.
  • Pair. Two cards with the same nominal value. The payout is also 1:1.
  • Two pairs. The payout is 2:1.
  • Set. Three cards with the same nominal value. The payout is 3:1.
  • Straight. Five cards in sequential order. The payout is 4:1.
  • Flush. Five of the same suit, any denomination. The payout is 5:1.
  • Full house. Two pairs plus a set. The payout is 7:1.
  • Four of a kind. Four cards with the same nominal value. The payout is 20:1.
  • Straight flush. Five cards of the same suit in nominal order. The payout is 50:1.
  • Royal Flush. Five cards from 10 to Ace of the same suit. The payout is 100:1.

Caribbean stud poker strategy

The following provisions are some mathematically proven strategies that allow you to maximize your chances:

1. Keep playing if you’ve got any pair or higher ranks;

2. Fold in case of cards lower than ace/king;

3. If you’ve got an ace or king, then keep playing in the condition that:

    3.1. The dealer’s card is from 2 to a queen, and you’ve got the same

    3.2. The dealer’s card is ace or a king, and you’ve got a jack or a queen,

    3.3. You have no dealer’s card but a queen, and your fourth card is higher than the dealer’s one.

If you’re lucky, then you’ll get the best combination to hit the jackpot.

While being an uncomplicated and light version of poker with the chance to play online against the dealer, Caribbean stud poker became very popular within the U.S and its casinos.