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A Simple Guide to Caribbean Stud

Caribbean stud is one of the most played variants of poker. The game can be found in land-based and online casinos in Kenya. It is easy to play and provides endless hours of fun. Basically, it requires the player to beat the dealer with the best possible hand. 

In this post, we will be discussing everything you need to know about the Caribbean Stud, from the history of the game and its glossary to gameplay rules, tips, progressive jackpots, and popular winning strategies.

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What is a Caribbean stud?

As previously mentioned, Caribbean stud is a variant of poker. It is based on a regular Poker game, where players are required to beat the house by making a better hand. The origin of a Caribbean stud is not yet clear, but there are a few theories. Most theories trace the game back to the 1500s cruise ship or the 1980s. 

The former theory states it evolved from the Spanish card game Primera and was invented in ships sailing the Caribbean in the 16th century. Some believe the game was invented on a cruise ship en route to Aruba, which has made many people travel to the Island to play the game at its source of origin.

It is also claimed that the game was invented by David Sklansky when he created poker in 1982. Some trace it back to Dane Jones, Danny, and Michael Titus, who apparently learned the game from an unknown gambler in Las Vegas in the 1980s.

Caribbean Stud

Caribbean Stud Glossary 

Here are some of the most commonly used terms in Caribbean stud:

  • Ace-King – The lowest hand that wins the game. The dealer must have this hand for the game to proceed.
  • Ante – wager placed before hands are dealt. 
  • Dealer – The person who deals cards at the table and manages the gameplay.
  • Fold – This refers to when you give up your hand. Once you fold, a new hand begins.
  • House – Refers to the casino or the dealer you’ll be playing against. 
  • Payout Table – What you win for having a better hand.
  • Progressive jackpot – This is a prize pool that grows as more people play the game. 
  • Straight – A hand with five cards on a sequential rank 
  • Straight flush – A hand containing a combination of a flush and a straight.
  • Royal flush – This refers to the best hand in Caribbean Stud. It’s the highest straight flush.
  • Three of a Kind – This is a hand rank where you’re dealt three matching cards.

How to Play Caribbean Stud 

Caribbean Stud is a straightforward variant of poker. Unlike other types of poker, players play against the house. 

The game starts with the dealer dealing five cards, face down, to each player that has placed the ante (initial bet). The dealer also deals themselves five cards with one face up. The players will then look at their cards and decide to play or fold. 

If they choose to play, they will be required to make another bet, also known as the raise. If they fold, they lose their initial bet. 

After all the players have either raised or folded, the dealer will reveal their hand. The dealer’s hand can only qualify if it has at least an Ace-King high. If they don’t have a qualifying hand, all players still in hand win their wagers. 

On the other hand, if the dealer has an Ace-King, it’s compared to the hands of the players to determine the winner. Players that win are paid one-to-one on the initial (ante) bet. 

Caribbean Stud Tips and Strategies to Keep in Mind

Here are a few tips and strategies to consider:

  • Learn the basics – The first thing to do is to learn the game before you play. This will give you a basic understanding of how the game operates. Do not play instantly on real money, try a demo version of a game.
  • Don’t let emotions control you – You will definitely hit losing and winning streaks. Don’t let the losing streak affect your decision-making.
  • Choose a good casino – Casino operators offer different payout odds and welcome bonuses when depositing money to play Caribbean Stud. Select a casino that has the best offers.
  • Double-check your cards – Be sure to check and counter-check your cards so that you don’t make any mistakes. 
  • Raise to win – If you are dealt a pair of cards or a higher hand, definitely raise, because your chances of winning are high at such times.
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Progressive Jackpot on the Caribbean Stud

The integration of the progressive jackpot proved to be a major attraction to many players worldwide as it adds to the potential winnings on a simple side bet. In addition, the side bet pays out even if a player folds or the dealer has a higher hand. 

The jackpot continues increasing until it’s won by a Royal Flush. Another thing about the progressive jackpot on the Caribbean stud is that if you win the progressive jackpot, you also win your regular bets as long as you beat the dealer’s hand. That means you win twice. 

Winning Strategies for Caribbean Stud

Here are a few strategies you can try to increase your winning chances:

Don’t bluff – The dealer will never fold. Bluffing is an expensive mistake in Caribbean stud.

Fold if you don’t have a qualifying hand – Well, you don’t need to have a qualifying hand – the dealer has to have one. If the dealer doesn’t meet this requirement, they will have to pay all the payers a payout equal to the ante. If you receive a hand that is less than the dealer’s, it’s recommended to fold. Your chance of winning is when the dealer’s hand does not qualify.

Check your hand before you fold or call – Always check your hand carefully before you fold or call. Some players get excited and confuse the five cards, thinking they have a flush. 

Ace isn’t as high as you think – While an Ace is the highest hand, don’t be fixated on it. Many players get excited when they see an ace in their hand without thinking twice. This could be a costly mistake. 


Caribbean Stud is one of the most popular casino games because it is quite easy to learn and gamble. It is also characterized by a high tempo of the game which especially attracts casino players. The game is played against the dealer, not other players. The winner is the one who has a better hand. By understanding the basics and keeping in mind the tips mentioned in this post, you can boost your winning chances.


Caribbean stud is played with the regular 52-card deck.

Absolutely! It might have a high house edge, but you stand a chance to win by learning the basics and mastering a few strategies.

Well, the minimum bet depends on where you’re playing. You can find a table with as low as Ksh100.

A dealer must have at least an Ace-King high to qualify the round.

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