3 Card Poker Strategy

Three card poker is one of the most popular casino games of all time.  It is a fantastic little twist on the popular if sometimes complicated game.

However, many people have tried and failed to get a handle on this table version of the classic.

In this guide, we will take you through some tips on how to work the game to your advantage.

1. Make Sure You Know What You’re Doing

Ok, so this is a simple tip to begin with – do you know the rules of the game?

It’s a little different from your full game of poker, which means your strategy is probably going to be quite a bit different.

Learn how to bet, what to look for, and when to call it a day.  Watch videos online and try playing a few games with friends.

2. Go Online Before You Play at a Casino

One of the easiest ways to get really good at three card poker is to practice through an online casino.

Luckily, we have plenty of those to show you!

Check out our lists of best casinos and sites offering three card poker and other games to players from all over the world.

3. Learn Which Bets Do What

It’s good to refresh on which bets are worth playing, and when.  For example, the ante bet is your basic, initial wager, while your play wager gets added on if you choose to keep drawing cards.

Another popular type of bet is the Pair Plus, which allows you to wager that you’ll draw a pair or a better hand on your draw.

4. Keep Your Cashpot Full

When playing online or for real, you never know when you’re going to play on an ante bet.

For that reason, do always make sure that you have enough cash to back up your ante hands.  Otherwise, you could end up crashing out sooner than you think.

Alternatively, be smart about ante bets, and don’t go too high early on, even if you’re confident.

5. Consider Safe Bets

If you are new to the game, then it makes sense to stick to ante bets.

Ante bets, as mentioned, are the basic wagers you’ll make and match if you decide to keep playing.

If you’re really not sure about your chances, or if you’re just getting started, betting ante consistently is a good idea.

This method may also maximise your chances of winning, on the whole.

6. Be Careful Raising Your Ante

The phrase ‘upping the ante’ never applied quite so well as it does in three card poker.

Of course, you can increase your ante if you’re feeling lucky, but make sure only to do so when you get great cards in a hand.

Up your ante with high valued hands, specifically those higher than a set of a 4, a 6 and a Queen.

7. Consider Comps

At many online casinos, you’ll be able to play for comps as well as real money.  This means you can claim back points to cash in on extra chips if you perform well during a game.

It’s never worth discounting comp points as they can be very useful, especially when you have run out of gaming cash.

8. Be Careful with Bonuses

Naturally, there are going to be some online casinos which offer you free cash to try out their poker lounges.

Always make sure to read the terms and conditions before you claim any freebies.  Beyond this, do ensure to use your bonus credit on ante bets, as these carry the lowest risk.

This is especially worth bearing in mind if you need to fulfil wagering requirements.

9. Use Tournament Credit Wisely

Entering a three card poker tournament?  Then you will need to make your money travel as far as possible.

That’s because tournaments are time-based, which means it pays to focus on making hands quickly, and getting a return off them at the same time.

Make sure to stick to ante bets and don’t play around with extra features or bets, no matter how alluring they may be.  They will only slow you down!

10. Look for Ties

Tied situations can really work to your advantage.  However, it is worth knowing that not all casinos, online and offline, will follow the tied rules.

These come into play when you and the dealer draw the same combinations.  It’s a rare occurrence, but some casinos may assume this to be a push scenario.

Go for the casinos with tied rules, as they could generate more cash for you in the long run.

11. Play the Game Your Way

A good game of three card poker revolves around whether or not you have fun!

You don’t have to punt large stakes forward unless you really want to, and certainly only if you can afford it.

With this in mind, make sure to check that you aren’t betting at the right level, and that you don’t accidentally throw your whole pot onto the table.

Carefully customise your game your way.

12. Pairs Plus Will Vary

Last of all, do bear in mind that while the Pairs Plus bet will often give you more chances at winning big cash, the odds you receive are always going to vary.

Some software providers and casinos online, for example, give different odds on different hands.

Make sure you do your homework and look for the sites and software developers offering the best possible odds on the hands you want.

James has almost a decade of experience in the Online Casino Industry. Winning several awards including "UK Casino Affiliate of the Year" he uses his experience to research the UK market to source the best bingo welcome bonuses, highest casino slots real money payouts and free spins sign up offers.