Caribbean Stud Poker: 101 Guide

Caribbean Stud Poker is an engaging and lucrative poker variation that enjoys a huge popularity among casino enthusiasts and card game fans. This game is fun and easy to master. It has an effective winning strategy that can guide you towards a win. Plus, you can play Caribbean Stud Poker with live dealers. Read this guide to learn how to play Caribbean Stud Poker online and increase your winning chances.

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About Caribbean Stud Poker

In Caribbean Stud Poker, you’re playing against the house represented by the dealer. This game is known for its player-friendly betting limits. In the regular online version of the game, Ante bet starts from as low as 2.5 dollars. It’s a really great offer that allows you to stretch your bankroll and play longer - on the condition that you’re disciplined enough to stick with the minimum wager! The casino advantage stands at 5% but you can easily reduce it by using a smart strategy.

Don’t let the complicated name of this game confuse you. This game doesn’t require any particular effort. Caribbean Stud Poker is a fun and easy to play game. In fact, it’s not that different from the all-familiar 5-Card Stud Poker that many people play during friendly get-togethers! If you know how to play 5-Card Stud Poker, you’ll be able to master Caribbean Stud Poker in a matter of minutes. Still skeptical? Check out for yourself because we’re going to break down the Caribbean Stud Poker rules for you below!

Caribbean Stud Poker rules

Let’s see how to play Caribbean Stud Poker online step by step.

caribbean stud poker

  • The player places the initial bet. In poker terms, this bet is called “ante”.
  • The dealer deals 5 cards face down to the player. Then the dealer deals 5 cards to themselves. This time, however, the dealer opens up one card (usually it’s the last one).
  • The player sees the dealer’s face-up card and then evaluates their own hand. Then the player must decide if they’re willing to fold or raise, i.e. make the extra (additional) bet. The extra bet is the double of your ante bet. If the player folds, they give up their ante wager. The ante bet goes to the casino and the player is only allowed to rejoin the game after the next hand has been dealt.
  • After the player has made their choice, the dealer evaluates their full hand. To open up their hand, the dealer must have at least an Ace and a King.
  • If the dealer doesn't qualify for opening their hand and you have placed the extra bet earlier, you get paid 1 to 1 on your ante bet. As for the additional bet, you simply get your money back.
  • Now what if the dealer qualifies for opening their hand and the player has made the extra bet? If your hand beats the dealer’s hand, you get paid 1 to 1 on your ante bet and your extra bet is paid based on the paytable (see the Payouts section below). If the dealer’s hand beats your hand, you lose both your bets and end the round empty-handed. If the player’s and the dealer’s hand totals are identical, all bets are returned to the payer. In poker terms, this situation is called “push”.

Payouts in Caribbean Stud Poker

Keep in mind that payouts for your additional bet may vary slightly depending on the online casino you’re playing at. Before playing Caribbean Stud Poker online or joining a live table, be sure to look at the paytable to see how the extra bet pays. This will save you disappointment in the future.

  • Royal Flush pays 100 to 1.
  • Straight Flush pays 50 to 1.
  • Four of a Kind pays 20 to 1.
  • Full House pays 7 to 1.
  • Flush pays 5 to 1.
  • Straight pays 4 to 1.
  • Three of a Kind pays 3 to 1.
  • 2 Pair pays 2 to 1.
  • Pair (or lower hand) pays 1 to 1.

Live Caribbean Stud Poker

Nowadays, online casinos offer a variety of live poker variations. Poker fans can choose from a bunch of Caribbean Stud Poker tables to enjoy their favorite casino game in live mode. Playing Caribbean Stud Poker live is way more exciting than playing the online regular version, especially if you find yourself in a good company. When playing live poker, you can communicate with the dealer and other players via live chat or microphone. The game is streamed in crispy HD quality. You’ll be able to watch the dealer from different angles and hear everything that is happening in the studio.

If you're on a tight-string budget, be sure to find a casino Stud Poker poker table with low betting limits. Most of the time, ante bets start from 5 dollars. However, if you look harder you have a chance to find a table with a lower limit.

Progressive jackpot

Jackpots hunters, rejoice! Some online Caribbean Stud Poker games feature a progressive jackpot. To become eligible for the jackpot, you need to place a supplemental (progressive) bet at the beginning of the game. The supplemental bet usually stands at 1 dollar. The good news is that the supplemental bet is independent from the outcome of the main game. Even if your hand loses to the dealer's hand, you can still grab a jackpot prize.

To win a jackpot, you need to have a Royal Flush, Straight Flush, 4 of a Kind, Full House or Flush. The higher your hand, the more money you’ll get. If you have the highest combination (Royal Flush), you’ll be rewarded with 100% of the jackpot. The payout percentage diminishes as you go from Royal Flush to Flush.

The progressive jackpot prize varies from game to game. Anyway, software manufacturers indicate the current jackpot pool for players to see. The same is true for live tables.

Caribbean Stud Poker strategy

Luckily for hardcore poker fans, Caribbean Stud Poker has a great winning strategy that really works. If you follow the strategy to the letter, you have all chances to bring down the house edge to 1% or even lower. That’s a great result!

Let’s take a look at some basic tips that will help you enhance your gambling performance at Caribbean Stud Poker.

  • To fold or not to fold? That is the question. It’s a crucial decision that you need to make early in the game, and you want to make it right. If you have at least an Ace and a King, be sure to continue playing. Only fold if your hand is lower than the Ace and King combo.
  • If you’re dealt a pair (and by “pair” we mean absolutely any pair, even 3+3), you need to place the extra bet without a second thought.
  • If the dealer’s open card is a Queen or less, and you have a card of the same rank, you should raise. If the dealer’s face-up card is an Ace or a King, you should only raise if you have a Queen or a Jack.
  • Avoid placing the progressive bet. While the idea of winning a jackpot can be very enticing and attractive, you should resist the urge to take this risk. Why? Because your chances of hitting a Royal Flush (or the remaining 4 hands that qualify for a jackpot) are extremely low. Did you know that the house edge on the supplemental bet exceeds 25%? If you’re counting every dollar, you should find the strength to avoid this temptation and give up on the idea of hunting down the jackpot prize.

Final word

If you’ve been wanting to try your hand at Caribbean Stud Poker, there is no better time than now to do that! Caribean Stud Poker is a fascinating game that requires skills and wits. At the same time, this doesn’t mean that it’s tricky. Not at all! Read this guide (and other tutorials if you need to), gain practice by playing poker in free demo mode, and once you feel confident, start playing Caribbean Stud Poker for real money. This thrilling game is your chance to train your brain and make some cash along the way!