Guide to 3 Card Poker

10 months ago
Guide to 3 Card Poker
16:00
25 Jan

Although poker purists claim that it’s not poker at all, the 3 card game has a rapidly growing number of players across the world, thanks to the speed of play, many different opportunities to win money in each round and a surprisingly high level of strategy involved.

It may not have the complexity of 5 Card Stud or the opportunities for bluffing that Texas Hold’em includes but once you start playing live 3 card poker, you’ll soon start to see the appeal.

First, a quick description for those new to the game of how to play.



It’s a game played against the dealer using a standard set of 52 cards and the game begins with all players making an Ante bet of at least the house minimum as well as optional Pair Plus and 6 card bonus bets. Then everyone, including the dealer, receives three cards, dealt face down. At this point players can choose to fold or play. The dealer reveals their hand, which must have a minimum of a Queen high for the round to proceed. If they don’t then the hand is stopped, players receive evens money on their Ante bets and any other best are returned.

Assuming the dealer does have a Queen or higher the round proceeds with hands ranked in the following order: Straight Flush, Three of a Kind, Straight, Flush, Pair, High Card. Players beating the dealer’s hand are paid an evens win as well as an Ante bonuses for certain hands like a Royal Flush Three of a Kind and even a Straight. These may differ from online casino to casino so it’s worth checking before you play

Players who have also made a Pair Plus or a 6 card bonus bet also have a chance to win additional money. With a Pair Plus there are bonuses for hands like a Mini Royal Flush, a Flush and, naturally, a Pair

In the 6 card bonus the player’s hand is combined with the dealer’s cards and pays out a bonus for a Royal Flush, Straight Flush, Four of a Kind, Full House, Flush, Straight and Three of a Kind .

So, for such a seemingly simple game there is a surprising level of complexity and that means knowing a winning strategy is key.



At the most basic level this involves knowing when you’re best to play and best to fold. Common wisdom says that if you have an Ace or King high, any pair or three of a kind, Queen high with a 7 or higher or Queen high with a 6 and a 4 or higher, statistically speaking it’s a good move to play.

To take the longer view, you should concentrate on the Ante bet because, although the paybacks are lower than on successful Pair Plus and 6 card bonus bets, the odds of you winning are far more in your favour.

So if you fancy a change from the usual games of poker you play then why not give the 3 card version a try? It might not be the huge money maker that its 5 and 7 card versions are but it’s fast, fun and you can still come out well ahead if luck’s on your side.


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Stewart resides in Edinburgh Scotland, and is a key member of the 180Vita team. An early member of the company, Stewart has worked on all of the companies major brands and projects, and is specifically involved in the core operations of PokerTube - Our flagship poker media website.Read more

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