Caribbean Stud Progressive Betting
The big question people have in caribbean stud poker is whether it is worth it to play the $1 progressive all the time. If not, when is it appropriate and what are your chances of winning.
The action of actually betting the progressive is simple. Whether you are at a casino online or at a real casino, all you have to do is put a dollar coin in the progressive coin slot.
Should I bet on the progressive jackpot?
There are a couple schools of thought here. You could view the progressive as a waste of a dollar each hand. This is because on most caribbean stud tables you will only get paid on a progressive bet when you get a flush or higher.
If you've ever played 5 card draw, you know it's hard enough to get a flush, full house, four of a kind, or a straight or royal flush. If you don't have the opportunity to draw for your hand, your chances go down even further.
Progressive Jackpot Odds
I'm going to list out your odds of winning anything when you put a dollar into the progressive. These are broken up by what the minimum winning progressive hand is and how often you should expect the hand.
Take a look at my caribbean stud odds page to see what your chance is of receiving any one of these hands individually.
If you are betting on a progressive jackpot that pays on a flush or more, you have a 0.21% chance of winning anything on the progressive (1 in 480 hands).
If the progressive jackpot that you are playing pays on a straight or more, the percentage moves up to 0.43% (1 in 234 hands).
If it pays on a three of a kind or higher, you have a 1.6% chance of winning on a progressive bet (1 in 62 hands).
Why should I bet on a progressive jackpot then?
Here's a very simple answer for this. A royal flush is dealt approximately every million hands or so. As the progressive jackpot grows, more people start playing the progressive and it grows faster. Someone is always going to hit the jackpot eventually.
Let's say you bet $10 on a random hand and did not put a coin into the progressive and let's also say that the progressive jackpot is over $100,000. You receive this one in a million hand. If you would have bet the progressive, you would have won the jackpot.
Instead now, you naturally raise your hand and win. But win what? Best case scenarios is that the dealer qualifies and you win a 200 to 1 payout or $2,000. The worst case scenario is that the dealer doesn't qualify and you win $10 for your royal flush.
The jackpot isn't won and continues to grow now that a royal flush might not be back for a while.
The same can be said for a straight flush. Usually getting it is worth 10% of the progressive pot.
When should I not bet on the progressive jackpot?
Mainly, I would say that you bet the progressive when you can afford it, specifically when you are up in money overall or when the money you are playing with is not really of concern to you. If you are on a cold streak and down money, that's not a good time to be giving a dollar away per hand.
One of the things you should never do is try to play the progressive in hopes of getting a flush, full house or four of a kind. These should be like a bonus to you when you win them. Your real goal is to win the jackpot and not just try to get an extra $50 with a flush. Not to mention that you have to play about 500 hands before you get a flush or better.
However, betting the progressive is a good way to protect a high hand in the event that you get it. The dealer not qualifying is one of the greatest things to disappoint caribbean stud players because it always seems that the dealer doesn't qualify when you have a big hand. What happens? You win money on your ante, making that flush or higher worth the same as a 9 high.