Three card poker is one of the faster-paced versions of the traditional poker game that’s played against the dealer and can be played both in physical casinos and in online settings. The goal, when learning how to play three card poker, is to create the best possible poker hand using just three cards, similar to other poker-based games such as Texas Hold’em and Caribbean Stud Poker. Unlike in those games, players take turns playing against the dealer rather than other players.
Because of the simplicity of the game’s rules, the fairness of the house edge, and the size of the payouts, three card poker is one of the most popular table games among casino patrons and is one that every player should try at least once.
How to Play Three Card Poker: Learn the Basic Rules First
When learning how to play casino games, it is really important that you learn the game’s rules before playing. Luckily, when learning how to play three card poker, you’ll discover that the rules are not complicated. Nevertheless, let’s delve into the rules of the game to get a better insight.
Placing the Bet: Before any cards are dealt, each player must first place a bet. There are two possible bets a player may select from when playing three-card poker:
- Ante: The player’s wager before the card distribution is known.
- Pair Plus: The objective of a pair plus bet is to create a pair or better in a hand.
Depending on the casino, some would demand you place an ante bet along with a pair plus bet before receiving your cards, while others would let you select between an ante bet or a pair plus bet.
Dealing cards: Each player receives three cards. Keep in mind that you are always playing against the dealer.
Play or Fold: Following your observation of the cards, you must choose whether to play (raise) or fold your ante bet. If you choose to play, you must make a wager equivalent to your initial ante wager. If you chose to fold, you would forfeit your ante bet to the dealer and that wager as well. Keep in mind that if you placed a Pair Plus bet and chose to fold, some casinos would force you to forfeit your wager.
Hands reveal: If players place ante bets and choose to play or fold, their hand combinations will be made known. The winning hand is determined by comparing the three cards held by each participant after the hands have been disclosed. For the dealer to be eligible to play, they must have a queen-high or greater.
Payouts: the following rules apply to players who wagered their ante bet and have a chance to win a payout:
- The player’s ante is paid, the play bet is returned to each player, and the dealer is eliminated if the dealer’s hand does not qualify to play.
- If the dealer’s hand qualifies, but the player has a better hand, both ante and play bet pay even money.
- The player’s ante bet and play bet are returned, if the dealer’s hand qualifies and the player’s hand is equal to the dealer’s hand.
- If the dealer’s hand ranks queen high or better and defeats the player’s hand, both the ante and plays bets are lost.
- The player will be rewarded with an ante bonus if he has a straight or better after placing an ante bet. No matter how much the dealer’s hand was worth, the ante bonus would be given. Several online casinos offer ante bonuses to players.