Beginner Tips for Winning at Pai Gow Poker 2012-09-12T12:57:36+00:00 2018-09-07T18:18:48+00:00 Carolyn J Dawson

How to Win While Playing Pai Gow Poker

Posted on  Sep 12, 2012 | Updated on  Sep 7, 2018 by Carolyn J Dawson

Pai Gow Poker is not your typical game of poker as it combines both poker and Chinese dominoes in the way that it is structured. In order to win at this poker variant, a poker player will have to lower the house edge. Many in the poker community believe that it is essential that the player have some mathematical skills and be able to calculate the house edge and win at Pai Gow Poker.

Here are some tips to win at Pai Gow Poker.

Understand The Rules And Betting Patterns –This is a standard tip for any poker game, and even more so with Pai Gow Poker. Players must known how the game works and have knowledge of the basics so that they do not struggle during game play.

Play Bank Whenever You Can – Position is an important factor in a game of Pai Gow Poker, and players must try and use the position of the Bank whenever possible, but need to be very careful at the same time. This is because the Banker is required to cover the best of all the other players at the table; however, the odds for the Banker to win are more favourable than for any other player. Remember that you will have to have a good bankroll to keep this position. You can also try and find a table that lets two players share the banker position to help you with this.

Watch the Ratio Between Banker to Player Bets – When playing as the Banker, a player should try and bet big if he feels he has a good chance of winning with his hand. When the player is not in the Banker position he should avoid placing large bets as he does not hold the advantage. When the ratio between the Banker bets and Player is great, then the odds are better for the Banker.

Be Careful How You Split Your Two Pairs – If you have a 2 pair hand, you will need to break it into two very well thought out hands as this will cut down the house edge in your favour. There are different ways of doing this and players should try out a few strategies in free play to see what suits their style of gaming before venturing on to one that they can use for real money play.

Here is a great video tutorial on how to play Pai Gow Poker

This video has been provided by

Focus on 5 Card Hand and 2 Card Hand –Players will need to create a 5 card hand and a 2 card hand to win this game. Most players concentrate on the 5 card hand and forget the 2 card hand or vice versa. A good player will try to balance both hands and keep this strategy in mind while betting. It is advisable to learn all the possible hand rankings before sitting down to a game of Pai Gow Poker.

Do Not Play a Full House As the Upper Hand – Unlike other poker games, Pai Gow Poker is one type of poker variant that does not favour a full house. Players who draw a full house or see the possibility of acquiring such a hand with the cards they have been dealt, should ideally avoid this hand. This is because although it will secure you a good 5 card hand, it will not leave you much room for creating a forward hand.

Use The House Way If You Need Guidance – Pai Gow Poker is not a simple game of poker and requires mathematical planning when you arrange your cards. For those players who suddenly get confused and do not know how to make the best out of their hand when they are confronted by a difficult arrangement, they can opt for the House Way. This is a method of automatically arranging your hand based on a fixed system of how the dealer arranges his own hand. Since this system varies from casino to casino, players should look it up and find out how it works before playing Pai Gow Poker at that particular online poker room or brick and mortar casino.

Play the Top Hand in A Three Pair – If you are lucky enough to secure a hand with a three pair, use the largest pair of that hand in front. This is a standard strategy and all good Pai Gow Poker players use it. However, if a player has three pair hand and nothing else, then he should play it at the back and put high cards in the front.

About the Author

Carolyn J Dawson is a professional freelance poker writer. She specialises writing content about poker/ bingo / blackjack/ etc. as well as breaking poker news. Carolyn has been freelancing for us over a number of years and writes high quality articles. Visit her google + page here