Three card poker is quickly gaining in popularity, as it offers a huge potential payout with a relatively small initial bet. Our general rules and strategies below is a good start for those looking to learn how to play three card poker. It isn’t an overly difficult game, and can be a lot of fun when you learn how to play correctly. The long and short of it is that you want to have a hand that is higher than the dealer’s hand.
When you look at the layout of the three card poker table, there are actually 3 places where you can place bets. To get started you place your initial bet in the space that is titled “ante”. You can also make the additional pair plus bet at this time, but we will cover the pair plus bet later. It’s actually two games in one, so it’s easier for us to explain how to play each part separately.
So you place your bet in the ante spot and then you will receive three cards from the dealer. The dealer will also deal himself three cards as well. His cards will be face down, so you will not be able to see them. You will look at your three cards and then decide on whether or not you want to continue with the hand. If you choose to fold now, you will lose your initial ante bet. If you choose to continue with the hand you must match your bet by placing an additional bet in the portion that says “play”.
If you choose to “play” then the dealer will turn over his cards and a winner will be determined. You will win your ante bet if your hand is better than the dealer’s hand, or if the dealer does not qualify. The dealer qualifies with queen high or better, so you should only every play queen high or better as well. If the dealer qualifies and you still beat the dealer, then you will also win your “play” bet at a 1-1 payoff. If the dealer doesn’t qualify you are simply returned this “play” bet. In summary if the dealer qualifies and you win, you will win even money on your ante bet, and even money on your play bet. If the dealer doesn’t qualify you win even money on your ante bet and are returned your play bet.
If you want to learn how to play three card poker properly, then you need to learn about how a pair plus bet works as well. It’s very easy actually, as you simply place the bet and are paid off according to the ratios below. If you don’t have a pair or better, you don’t win anything. It doesn’t matter if the dealer qualifies or not.
Three of a kind 30-1
Straight Flush 40-1