Want to know the rules of Paigow Poker?


The game of Pai Gow poker is played with 53 cards - a standard deck plus a wild joker. Players are dealt 7 cards and must then make 2 hands out of these 7 cards as follows:

  • "the highest hand" consisting of  5 cards.  This must be the highest ranking ( in general poker terms) of the two hands.  If for example you have a pair in your 7 cards, it must go to the highest hand.  If you have 2 pair, one can go to the second highest hand, but it must be the low pair, and

  •  The  second  hand is referred to as "the second highest," consisting of the remaining 2 cards. 

The dealer also has a "highest hand" and "second highest hand".  In order to win the bet (for a 1 to 1 payoff), both your hands must beat both the dealer's hands.  Winning one and losing one is a push, and if you lose both the game is lost.

Some other important points to know...

  • The wild card can only be used as a single ace; or to complete a flush, straight, or a straight flush.

  • In Pai Gow poker, the highest-ranking hand is 5 aces (i.e. 4 aces plus the wild card). This poker hand beats a royal flush.

  • The 2-card hand of highest rank is a pair of aces. If the second highest hand is not composed of a pair, the value of the cards determines the hands rank.

  • When the player and the dealer compare hands that have the same rank, that hand is referred to as a "copy hand." Unlike in blackjack, where a copy hand results in a push; the dealer wins the copy hand in Pai Gow.

    Pai Gow Hand Ranking

    1:  5 Aces
    2:  Royal Flush
    3:  Straight Flush
    4:  4 of a kind
    5:  Full House
    6:  Flush
    7:  Straight
    8:  3 of a kind
    9:  2 pairs
    10:1 pair
    11: High card

  • Apart from the 5 Aces rule, the one difference between the system of ranking hands in Pai Gow poker and in other poker games is that A-K-Q-J-10 ranks as the highest straight, A-2-3-4-5 ranks as the second highest straight, followed by K-Q-J-10-9.

  • Players win even money ( i.e. 1 to 1) on their bets, but must pay a 5% commission on their winnings to the bank. Your actual winnings are thus 95% of your bet.

For a more comprehensive guide to Pai gow, check out Pai Gow Poker .net

Good luck!


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