How to Play 3 Card Poker to Boost Your Winning Chance 80%

Like the other types of poker, you should know how to play 3 card poker before deciding to go to a casino or play it at an online gambling website. It is fast, interesting, and easy-to-learn, making it more popular among players. 

Found in 1994, 3 card poker provides the perfect blend of strategy, skill, and chance with big payouts that have captured the imagination for decades. Today, this poker variation is available at many of the best live casino Malaysia. In this article, you will find a comprehensive guide to everything you need to know about 3 card poker. 

How to Play 3 Card Poker: A Comprehensive Guide

At its core, 3 card poker is a game that requires the player to make the best possible poker hand from three cards to beat the dealer. This game is similar to other poker games like Ultimate Texas Holdem, where you will not compete against other players. 

As the name suggests, 3 card poker is unique and can be played only using a few cards. This also makes the game simple and keeps the action ticking along at a good speed. In addition, this game has a range of interesting betting options and the potential for big payouts. Here are some tips on how to play 3 card poker that you should know. 

1. Place Your Bets

The first thing you need to do on how to play 3 card poker, you must place an ante bet with a further chance to place an optional pair plus bets. A pair plus bets is a bet that you will be dealt for at least a pair or better, with a predetermined payout. Moreover, an ante bet is what you bet against the dealer’s hand. 

2. The Cards are Dealt

The next important thing on how to play 3 card poker, the dealer will deal 3 cards face down to every player at the table and their own hand. You don’t need to pay attention to other players at the table, as they will not affect the result in any way. 

3. Choosing to Play

Furthermore, you will look at your hand and decide whether you want to fold or you want to take on the dealer’s card. If you choose to play, then you will need to place an extra play bet, that must be equal to your first ante bet. This is where the poker strategy will start to come into things!

4. The Cards are Revealed

If you decide to fold, the hand is over and the dealer will collect your ante bet and a pair plus bet (if you placed one). However, if you choose to play, now is the time to flip your cards and see if you are against the dealer’s hand. 

5. Determining the Winning Hand

On how to play 3 card poker, when the dealer has J-high or worse, your play bet will be automatically returned to you. With Q-high or better, the bet runs and you will directly against the dealer. This following table will show the result of your bet based on the hand result:

Hand ResultBet Result
Dealer has Q-high or lessAnte bet paid at odds of 1/1, player can bet returned in full
Dealer and player have equal handsBoth ante bet and play bet will return in full
Player hand againsts dealerBoth ante bet and play bet both paid at odds of 1/1
Dealer hand againsts playerIf dealer wins, ante and play bets will lose

3 Card Poker Payouts and Odds

Even though how to play 3 card poker is very simple, however, the payouts can be slightly more complicated purely as there is both Pair Plus Payout and Ante Bonus Payout to choose from. Here are a few things you also need to know. 

Pair Plus Payouts

As we have mentioned, a Pair Plus Bet is placed prior to the beginning of the hand and is paid out solely on the basis of the 3 cards you are dealt. These are the payouts from hitting a winning hand: 

HandWinning Hand (Example)Payout Odds
Straight Flush9♦️, 10♦️, J♦️ 40/1
Three of a KindQ♣️, Q♠️, Q♥️30/1
Straight3♣️, 4♥️, 5♥️6/1
Flush2♠️, 9♠️, A♠️3/1
Pair6♥️, 6♠️, Q♣️1/1

Ante Bonus Payouts

The ante bet is paid out at the culmination on how to play 3 card poker, with payouts at the following hands:

HandWinning Hand (Example)Payout Odds
Straight Flush9♦️, 10♦️, J♦️ 5/1
Three of a KindQ♣️, Q♠️, Q♥️4/1
Straight3♣️, 4♥️, 5♥️1/1

Best Basic 3 Card Poker Strategy for Beginner

The best players will always tell you the important strategy when learning how to play 3 card poker. Fortunately, a basic strategy is very easy to keep in mind and can at least save your money in the long term and hopefully make some money too. These are the following cases in which you should make a play bet after seeing your own cards:

  • Any time you have a minimum of Q, 6, and 4
  • Any time you have a minimum of Q, 7, and the irrespective of the value of the 3rd card
  • Whenever you have an A or a K, regardless of the other two cards
  • Whenever you  hit a winning hand from the off -a pair or better 6, 6, 10

The basic strategy becomes the following fold should be created: 

  • When your higher card is a J or lower (and you have not hit another winning combination), fold. 

There it is! It was good and simple!

House Edge in 3 Card Poker

Certainly, on how to play 3 card poker has a house edge like any other casino game. However, the house has less of an advantage than in many best JILI slot game. Here are the following house edge statistics at different stages of three card poker hand:

  • Ante bet: 3.37%
  • Play bet: 2.01% (assuming maximum strategy)
  • Pair plus bet: 2.32%

Final Words

Practicing how to play 3 card poker at best online casino Malaysia is a great way to get to grips with the game. You can test the effective ways to increase the winning, practicing the bankroll management, and get the entertainment non stop! This is your time to become a poker master!


Garuda Casino is the Malaysian independent online gaming authority, providing trusted online casino news, guides, reviews and information.

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