Casino Basics: How to Win at Caribbean Stud

Beginner’s 2-tier strategy for Caribbean Stud Progressive Poker

Strategy for Caribbean Stud Progressive PokerAs far as house edges go, there are some good casino table games, and some bad ones. The good ones, when played with proper strategy, can produce an extremely small edge for the casino. The bad ones offer no way to get anywhere close to a player advantage. Unfortunately, Caribbean Stud Progressive Poker falls into that second column.

That doesn’t mean the game isn’t fun, or that it isn’t worth playing. There are some people who absolutely love this game. And the fact that it carries a valuable progressive jackpot doesn’t hurt either. If you want to win at Caribbean Stud, you’re going to need to apply at least a basic strategy.

I say basic, because the most advanced strategies won’t get you much further, and they’re highly involved. At best, you can play Caribbean Stud Poker with a 5.2% house edge. With the simple, two-tier strategy I’m about to describe, you can get pretty close to that at 5.5%.

Beginners 2-Tier Strategy for Caribbean Stud Progressive Poker

Like most stud games, the object of Caribbean Stud is to beat the dealer’s 5-card hand with your own 5-card hand. Sounds pretty simple, right? There’s a few catches though. For one, the dealer must ‘qualify’ with a hand of Ace/King or better.

The good news is that the player always wins (even money on Ante, push on Bet) if the dealer doesn’t qualify. The bad news is that the player must have a good enough hand to place the Bet before knowing if the dealer qualifies. Fold the hand, and you lose automatically.

With this in mind, and several other factors I won’t get into right now (I’m going to assume you know the rules of the game if you’re looking for strategies), there are two simple rules to follow in this beginners strategy.

#1 Bet on Any Pair or Better

The first rule is to bet on any hand you may hold, so long as it contains a pair or better. It doesn’t matter how low that pair may be. If you have at least 2+2, do not fold. Regardless of the dealer’s up card, make the bet.

#2 Bet or Fold without Pair or Better

If you have any hand that the dealer wouldn’t qualify with, fold it. That means you’ll fold anything less than Ace/King high. If you do have an Ace/King high, your decision will be based on the dealer’s face-up card. If you have better than Ace/King high, refer to Rule #1.

If the dealer is showing anything below a King, and it matches one of your other cards, make the bet. If the dealer is showing a Jack or below, and you have a Queen in your hand (along with the Ace/King), make the bet. Otherwise fold; forfeit the Ante and wait for a better deal.

When to Learn Advanced Strategies

If you make it through the basic strategy for Caribbean Stud Progressive Poker, and you really enjoy the game, you may want to consider learning optimal strategy. It will only shrink the house edge by another 0.3%, but every little bit counts. Just be warned, it’s one of the most involved casino card game strategies, and will take many hours of your time to effectively master.

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