Fun Facts & Tricks About Caribbean Stud Poker

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  • Written by Evi
  • Posted May 17, 2022
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Today it is table games like Let It Ride, Mississippi Stud and Three Card Poker that are extremely popular in the United States online casino† But for a long time, Caribbean Stud Poker was the game that dominated the casinos. The game was particularly popular in the eighties and nineties.

Caribbean Stud Poker combines essential elements of traditional Five-Card Stud Poker with those of casino games. Instead of playing against other players, it is played against the casino.

When playing you can choose to continue playing or to fold (fold) after the bet and seeing the first cards. Whoever continues to play must make sure to have a higher hand than the dealer. If one has a higher hand than the dealer, one wins the game round. Payment is then made via a paytable similar to that used in poker.

Caribbean Stud Poker is a game you can learn in minutes. The simplicity of the game has probably made the game less popular. In this article you can read some funny facts and tidbits about Caribbean Stud Poker.

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Funny facts and tidbits

Before poker professionals like Dan Harrington and Barry Greenstein wrote strategy books, David Sklansky was the most prolific author in his industry. Between 1982 and 1983, Sklansky took home three awards at the annual World Series of Poker (WSOP). A year later he wrote “Hold'em Poker” (1984). Fifteen years later, he presented his book “The Theory of Poker” (1999).

In it he wrote about a completely new way of gambling on table games which he called 'Casino Poker'. In Sklansky's game, the players placed an initial bet (the Ante) before taking five cards at random. The dealer also took five cards, one of which was dealt face up. The player can then choose to continue or fold. The dealer must qualify to play with at least an Ace and a King or higher. Only then is it paid out according to the lucrative payout table.

Sklansky says his Casino Poker was the forerunner of Caribbean Stud Poker as you know it today. In 2007 Sklansky wrote the article “I Invented Caribbean Stud”. In it, Sklansky explained how his casino poker turned into Caribbean Stud Poker thanks to a series of unfortunate events:

    "In 1982 I invented the game that became Caribbean Stud. I called it Casino Poker. Except for the fact that I exposed one card instead of two, the rules were the same.

    I was told I couldn't get a patent on the game. This, despite the fact that I have registered the name as a patent. I didn't do anything about it because my girlfriend was seriously ill at the time.

    A few years later, a poker player asked me about the game because he knew a casino owner in Aruba. He changed the rules. They added the progressive card and exposed only one card. This game was patented. There is an ongoing controversy about that patent and I was asked to make a statement about it a few years ago. †

The veracity of this story cannot really be verified. His name does not appear on the 1988 patent. Nevertheless, there is not much reason to doubt his story. Poker players are known for engaging in all kinds of entrepreneurial interests. By the way, usually with disastrous results. This, due to their lack of business experience and willingness to trust other gamblers. Whether Sklansky really invented Caribbean Stud Poker remains an open debate. In any case, poker players and gamblers owe the man a debt of gratitude in more ways than one.

As Sklansky mentions in his post, Caribbean Stud Poker offers some sort of “bonus” payouts. But only if your hand beats the dealer's qualifying hand (AK high or better).

These payouts are linked to the “blind” , also known as the “raise”. This is because you have to double the ante bet in order to continue playing. Below is an overview of the payouts at Caribbean Stud Poker.

Royal Flush 100 times your stake
Straight flush 50 times your stake
Four of a kind 20 times your stake
Full House 7 times your stake
Flush 5 times your stake
Straight 3 times your stake
Three of a kind 2 times your stake
two pair 1 times your stake
one pair 1 times your stake
high card 1 times your stake

This table only applies if the dealer has a qualifying hand of AK high or better.

Many players do not play Caribbean Stud-based games because they resemble traditional poker too much. Traditional poker requires complicated strategies to win. This is not the case at Caribbean Stud Poker. Anyone can learn to play perfectly in minutes.

The basic strategy of Caribbean Stud Poker is very simple and has only two rules:

    1. With one pair or better, ALWAYS raise;
    2. With less than AK high (AQ high, K-high, etc.) ALWAYS fold

There are plenty of strategies out there that make everything even more complicated. Such strategies sometimes require you to memorize dozens of combinations. That goes a long way, of course. And that's why even professional players use these two basic rules when playing Caribbean Stud Poker.

Those looking for poker variants will probably come across the game “Caribbean Draw Poker”. This variant can easily be confused with Caribbean Stud. Caribbean Draw Poker is another variant of Caribbean Stud Poker.

At Caribbean Draw Poker, players are allowed to choose two cards to replace with new cards. This variant has been developed to give the Caribbean Stud some more variety. So the games are very similar. However, due to the minor adjustment, Caribbean Draw Poker requires a completely different strategy.

You may not want to hear it, but you should simply NEVER play side bets. They have a sky-high house edge and detract from any basic strategy.

They are, of course, very attractive bets, at least if you win them. However, the chances of this happening are very, very slim.

Playing a side bet at Caribbean Stud Poker is one of the least profitable side bets in the casino. The side bet has a house edge of 26,46%. A huge advantage for the casino, which you should stay far away from.


Caribbean Stud Poker is not that popular anymore. However, this game will not disappear from the casinos anytime soon. Caribbean Stud Poker has certainly played an important role in the history of gambling. Game inventors who saw how popular Caribbean Stud Poker became in the XNUMXs. They used the structure of the game as inspiration for other games, such as Mississippi Stud and Let It Ride. The five facts you've read clearly demonstrate the game's glittering career.