Playing Caribbean Stud Poker Online

The Complete Guide to Real Money Caribbean Stud Poker Online

Caribbean Stud poker is casino table game with rules very similar to five card stud poker, the key difference being the fact that you’ll be playing against the house, as opposed to other players. In this article I start by looking at the rules, starting with the two bets you’ll be able to place before each hand, then detailing how the raise bet works. I then move onto explain how you’ll win when playing and what the term ‘dealer qualified’ means. I finish by looking at some strategy you could employ when playing Caribbean Stud poker, before looking at the progressive jackpots you might find online.

How Caribbean Stud Poker Works

In every version of online Caribbean Stud poker you’ll find two betting options, in the ‘ante’ and the ‘raise’. These options might also be joined by a progressive jackpot side bet option at some games. Before a hand is dealt you’ll place a single ante bet (I’ll explain the separate progressive jackpot side bet at the end of the article). You’ll now be dealt 5 cards and all of these will be face up. The dealer will now be dealt five cards, but only one of their cards will be face up. You’ll now have a decision to make – do you fold or raise? If you fold, the house will take your ante bet and the hand is now over. However, if you raise, you’ll need to place a raise bet which is double the size of the ante.

Your hand will now be compared to the dealer’s hand. If the dealer’s hand is better than yours, you will lose both the ante and the raise. If your hand is better than the dealer’s, then the ante bet wins automatically, but the raise bet will only win if the dealer’s hand ‘qualifies’. A dealer’s hand is deemed to have qualified if the hand has an Ace and a King in it, or is a pair or higher. If your hand beats the dealer’s but it hasn’t qualified, then the raise bet will be a push.

That however is not the end of the story, as the higher ranked your hand, the higher the payout odds of the raise bet. Here is a table showing the payout odds for the raise bet:

Play real money Caribbean Stud Poker OnlineRoyal Flush 200 to 1

Straight Flush 50 to 1

4 of a kind 20 to 1

Full House 7 to 1

Flush 5 to 1

Straight 4 to 1

3 of a kind 3 to 1

Two Pairs 2 to 1

One pair/high card 1 to 1

So for example, you might have bet $5 as the original ante. You now see that you have been dealt a flush, so you would (I hope!) raise at this point, for another $10. You’ll now see the dealer’s cards. If you win the hand and the dealer has qualified you’ll win $5 from the ante bet and $50 from the raise bet. If you win the hand and the dealer hasn’t qualified, you’ll win $5 from the ante bet and the raise bet will be a push.

Caribbean Stud Poker Strategy

Playing Caribbean Stud poker optimally is a little tricky and requires some serious math to work out the best play in some situations. However, there are a couple of generalizations that you can use which will cover the vast majority of hands.

Firstly, if your hand has a pair or better, you should raise.

Secondly, if your hand has no pair or better and you don’t have an Ace and a King, you should fold.

Only the scenario where you have exactly an Ace and a King with no pair or better is tricky and this is where you can take into account the one card of the dealer that you can see.

Caribbean Stud Poker Jackpot Side Bet

An optional bet at many online versions of the game is the Jackpot side bet. This is completely independent of the main game and the hand of the dealer will have no effect on the outcome of this bet. Usually, if you land a royal flush, you’ll win the progressive jackpot! Lower hands might pay out a percentage of the jackpot fund (a straight flush may pay out 10% of the jackpot pool) or a direct cash prize. At the majority of jackpot games you’ll need at least a flush to win a payout on the side bet, although the odds will be vastly higher than you’ll receive on the raise chart.

Best Caribbean Stud Poker Game Online

This will depend on where you are located - as the very best game is not available to US players (see below if you are from the US). 

My easy top rec is the Caribbean Stud game at the Unibet Casino. This has very smooth game-play and comes with 2 graphics variations. There is a very smart electric neon blue version ( worth seeing) and a traditional felt version too. You can bet from just $1 ante, and there is an optional progressive jackpot side bet (which I have seen close to $200,000 for the royal flush). This game stands out from the crowd for me and combined with the generous player promotions makes this a must-see. Check out the 888 Casino now at!

For US based players the best table game software should need little in the way of introduction. This comes from RealTime Gaming. They have a very solid Caribbean Stud game, and a game which you will not find anywhere else in the form of Caribbean Holdem too. For RealTime Gaming + BetSoft + Rival Gaming Titles all in one (US-Friendly) casino, check out the awesome now!

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