Caribbean Holdem strategy is not as simple as the strategy for most other casino games.
Computers can be used to make the optimal decision every time but nobody has yet found a simple set of rules that can be memorized. There are, however, a few general rules that you can use to help maximize your chances of winning.
According to most sources, the optimal strategy for Caribbean Holdem is to raise about 82% of the time. This is a surprisingly high number compared to other games in which you should fold the majority of the time. Raising in Caribbean Holdem isn’t always a winning play, but it loses less than folding.
Basic Caribbean Holdem Strategy
The following Caribbean Holdem strategy tips will at least get you off to a good start. This strategy is not perfectly optimal, but it comes close and its easy to remember:
Always raise with a pair or better
Raise if your hole cards outrank at least two cards on the flop
Raise with all flush draws (four to a flush)
Raise with all open-ended straight draws (ex – you have TJ and the board is showing 289)
Fold when you have two low cards in the hole and no straight or flush draws
Remember; you should only fold the bottom 18% of your hands.
If you follow these basic rules, you’ll do OK with Caribbean Holdem. This strategy is not exactly perfect but it’s the closest you will come in a real life casino setting. If you play according to this strategy, the house advantage will be reduced to about 2%-3%.
Caribbean Holdem Bankroll Management
Bankroll management is important in all casino games. Make sure that you keep your bets small in comparison to the size of your gambling bankroll. The house advantage in Caribbean Holdem is fairly low so if you practice bankroll management, you should be able to stay in the game for a long time.
The size of bets you make in Caribbean Holdem should be based upon how much risk you can handle. If you just have a few bucks to blow and don’t care if you lose it or not, it doesn’t matter how much you bet on each hand. If you want to stay in the game for a long time, however, you will want to make your bets much smaller. A good guide is to keep your bets equal to about 1-5% the size of your bankroll.
Optional Jackpot Wager
Caribbean Holdem has an optional bet you can place for $1.00. This bet offers additional payouts for achieving stronger-than-usual hands. The house advantage on the jackpot wager is quite high at most casinos but this bet only costs $1.00 so most casino players make this bet.
If you want to reduce the house advantage to the absolute minimum, this wager should be avoided. Personally, I place this bet randomly because Caribbean Holdem is a gambling game, not a strategy game. If I’m going to be doing a little gambling, I’ll place the extra $1.00 bet for a small chance to win big money.
But keep in mind that this little $1.00 bet can add up quickly if you place it every hand. Assuming an average of 35 hands per hour, you will be risking an additional $35 an hour on a high house advantage bet.