Caribbean Stud Poker
Caribbean stud became popular on cruise ships and in Caribbean resorts years before it came to the United States. One of the reasons for it's popularity is that players do not have to have a great hand to win. Players can win with marginal hands if they do not fold and the dealer does not qualify. Although the game can seem intricate and somewhat intimidating, it is actually quite simple.
There are only a few decisions that the player needs to make: how much to bet, whether or not to fold and whether to go for the progressive jackpot or wisely skip that bet. The main difference between traditional poker and Caribbean stud poker is players only oppose the dealer not the other players. The goal is to be dealt a stronger five card hand than the dealer.
Caribbean stud poker is played at a standard blackjack-sized card table with a 52 card regulation deck. There are three betting areas on the table:
Progressive Bet: This bet is made prior to the dealing of the hand and indicates that the player wishes to participate in the progressive jackpot bet. The bet is $1 and is placed above the ante bet wager spot
Ante Bet: This is where the mandatory initial bet is placed prior to the dealing of the hand
Raise Bet: This area is located directly behind the ante bet wager spot and is made after the cards have been dealt. This bet means the player does not wish to fold and must wager double the amount of the ante bet
Play begins with each player placing a wager in the ante bet spot. This wager is mandatory and must be at least equal to the table minimum. Players may also optionally place a progressive jackpot bet in the appropriate betting slot. Each player is then dealt five cards face down and the dealer turns over one of their five cards face up. Players then look at their cards without revealing any of them to the other players at the table.
Each player must then decide whether or not to fold and lose their ante bet or raise by placing a bet that is double the amount of their ante bet in the raise bet spot. If a player folds, they must relinquish their cards to the dealer who will collect their ante bet. After each player has either folded or raised, the dealer exposes their remaining cards.
If the dealer does not qualify, have at least an Ace-King hand, then all remaining ante bets are paid even money and all raise bets are pushed. If the dealer does qualify, they will turn over each player's hand one at a time and compare them to their own hand. Winning hands are determined by standard poker hand rankings.
Player's hands that beat the dealer's hands are paid even money for their ante bet and a gradual amount according to that casino's raise bet payout schedule. Player's hands that do not beat the dealer's hands lose both their ante bet and raise bet. If the player participated in the progressive jackpot and drew a hand that qualifies, they will be paid according to that casino's jackpot payout table.