|Tip #1 : Basic Strategy
Simply put, the basic strategy in Caribbean Poker is to Raise on A-K-J-8-3 or better and Fold otherwise. That is called the "beacon hand" and it's the lowest break-even hand in the game. While this won't make you a long-term winner, it will help slow your losses. It's the paying hands, a pair or better, that will net you the good wins. Trouble is that the dealer must qualify (A-K) in order for you to get the real payoffs and those opportunities are annoyingly infrequent in Caribbean Poker. More on this later.
If you've spent any time looking around, you'll know that there are many varieties and variations of this strategy. Using them will help you shave the house edge by teeny amounts, but they're hardly worth the effort. Even if you played the mathematically optimal strategy you'd only improve over the basic strategy by a few tenths of a point. Is it worth it? On paper maybe, but the bottom line is that you're playing a losing game so getting deep into it in order to shave a couple tenths is an effort of dubious worth.
|Tip #2 : Playing Strategy
1. Fold if you have less than Ace-King.
2. Make a call bet if:
* You have at least any pair or higher.
* You have at least an Ace-King and one of your other cards is the same as the dealer's face card.
The casino's edge is about 5.2% based on the player's ante wager (or 2.6% based on the ante and call bet).
If you want to play Caribbean Stud Poker, remember to play it smartly by following the basic playing strategy, avoid bluffing on weak hands & folding on low pairs, and do not make the progressive jackpot bet unless the amount of the jackpot justifies it.
|Tip #3 : Playing Options
Players are also given the option of playing for the progressive jackpot. To be considered for the progressive, players must make an additional side bet of one dollar at the onset of the game. The player is wagering that they will receive a hand of cards that equates to a flush or better. Regardless of the outcome of the regular table game, if the player has a hand that qualifies for the progressive jackpot, that player will win the amount designated in the payout table. Players are usually rewarded with 100% of the pot for a royal flush, 10% of the pot for a straight flush, and a set monetary amount for a four of a kind, full house, or a flush. These amounts will vary from casino to casino.
|Tip #4 : Mistakes Players Make
Two of the most common playing mistakes made by players is to fold when they have a small pair or to bluff the dealer by making a call bet when they have a weak hand.
First, never fold your small pairs. You will be dealt a pair about 42% of the times and you'll win more (or lose less) in the long run by making the call bet rather than to fold (the casino has about a 7% edge against players who fold on small pairs). Also, never try to bluff the dealer! Some player's mistakenly believe they can win more hands by making the call bet when they have a weak hand. They figure that the dealer who doesn't qualify pays off the ante wager for player's who stay in (i.e. make the call bet) regardless if the player has a strong or weak hand. The problem with this strategy is that when the dealer does qualify (and he will about 56% of the time), the player loses not only the ante bet but also the call bet (which is twice the ante bet). Mathematically a player who bluffs with a weak hand will lose 25% more of his ante over the long run than if he folded. Bottom-line - don't bluff!
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