When playing Pai Gow poker, the most important
thing to remember is that you have to be able
to win both hands. If you have a full house, that
would make a great 5-card hand, but what do you
have for the other two cards? Unless you have
an additional pair, you are likely to lose the
second hand. You will usually be better off to
split the full house into two hands, a three-of-a-kind
and a pair. Your pair has a good chance of winning
the two card hand, and a three-of-a-kind is not
bad for a 5-card hand.
If you have a choice between a really strong
hand and a really weak hand or two average hands,
it is usually better to go for the strong hand.
This way if the second hand loses, it’s
still a push. With two average hands, you risk
losing on both and losing your bet.
Sometimes Pai Gow is played with a rotating
bank. If you are playing at a full table with
six players plus the dealer, you will have the
option of playing as the bank every seventh
hand. Playing as the banker is a good way to
really make some money at this game. However,
it also puts you in the position of having a
lot to lose. The person who is playing the bank
must be able to cover the bets of ever other
player on the table.
When you are playing as the bank, you take
the place of the casino. Everyone else is playing
against you, even the dealer. You will have
to pay any losses if you lose, but you will
get the whole pot if you win. If you win, keep
in mind that you will still have to pay the
casino a 5% commission on the winnings.