Improve Your Video Poker Game with These Top Tips

In this guide you will learn everything you need to boost your video poker skills. We cover everything from winning strategies, to managing your bankroll and using resources to your advantage. Whether you are a seasoned player or a complete newbie, there’s always something new to learn.

Beat the Machine

One way to beat the video poker machine is by raising your odds of winning; however, this does not guarantee a win. The next four tips are crucial if you want to beat the machine.


Study the Paytable

Video poker machines differ in terms of how much they pay out for winning hands. So, put some time aside to have a look at the paytable before playing.

Look at the Pay Table

Secure the Bonus

Join as many VIP programs and clubs and bag as many bonuses as possible. With a solid bankroll your odds of winning increase even more.

Look at the Pay Table

Practice, Practice, and More Practice

Use video poker trainers, cheat sheets, and guides (like this one) to your advantage. Knowing all the ins and outs increases your odds considerably.

Look at the Pay Table

Use Winning Strategies

It is important to not only know which move to make, but also when to make it. So, if you want to come out on top, learn more about poker strategy.

Look at the Pay Table

Win Using Strategy

There are many different poker variants, which means that one strategy cannot apply to all.Which cards to keep and which to drop varies depending on what the wild card is, and the minimum hand needed to win.

The following strategy applies to Jacks or Better video poker.

With this poker variant, any hand consisting of a pair of Jack or better wins. Note that you have the option to drop whatever cards you want. However, it is not always clear which cards to keep and which to drop.

Although, there’s a few guaranteed winners that you always want to keep. These include a straight flush, royal flush, four of a kind, full house, two pair, or three of a kind. If you think you can make a royal flush, go for it, and drop a card.

Jacks or Better Video Poker

Using Strategy Charts

There is a range of video poker strategy charts available that teach you what move to make if you find yourself in any given situation. Using them couldn’t be easier. Simply find your hand in the left column and look at the cells to the right to see how many cards you should drop and keep. For example, if you hit a royal flush, you would keep all 5 cards and discard none.

However, land-based casinos tend to not take kindly to the use of cheat sheets, so make sure to memorize it before heading to the casino. But if you prefer to play online there’s no problem with keeping it close by.

Your hand Keep Drop
Straight Flush50
Royal Flush50
Full House50
Four of a kind50
Four to a Royal Flush41
Three to a Straight Flush32
Four to a Straight41
Two Pair21
High Pair23
Four to a Flush41
Three to a Royal Flush32
Low Pair23
Four to a Flush41
Four to a Straight41
Three to a Straight Flush32
Two High Cards23
Two to a Royal Flush23
One High Card14
Two High Cards23

Using Hand Calculators

Hand calculators have been proven to give players the advantage when playing video poker. This removes any guesswork from your strategy. It is as simple as entering your hand, and it tells you exactly which cards to keep and which to drop. There’s nothing simpler.

Using Cheat Sheets

Cheat sheets are like strategy charts in that they tell you what to do in a specific situation. It will tell you your next move based on your hand. All you need to do is find your hand on the chart and it will tell you how to play your cards. This might be frowned upon in land-based casinos, but online no one can see you so you’re free to use it.

How To Place Your Bet

Understanding how to bet will ensure that you enjoy the game more and also get more out of your money. You can beat the machine by knowing how and when to bet. Below are a few tips on placing smart bets.


Bet Wisely

The single most important piece of advice you can get about betting is this. Only bet with money that you can afford to lose. If you are unsure how much you can afford to lose, determine an amount you would be comfortable losing before you start playing and stick to it. Also refrain from trying to win money that has already been lost.


Bet At the Right Time

If you want to bag a progressive jackpot, you must know when it is the best time to bet. Progressive jackpots increase until a winner takes it all. So, if you win shortly after someone hit a big jackpot, you likely won’t get a very big payout. In this case it might be best to wait until the jackpot has grown large enough before you place your bet.


Bet Max

When playing video poker, it’s always beneficial to use the maximum bet option. This ensures a much bigger payout compared to if you don’t use a maximum bet. If you cannot afford the max bet at your current machine, consider playing on a machine where you can comfortably bet the maximum.


Stretch Your Bankroll

Video poker is very fun to play. To enjoy it for hours on end, play lower denomination games. This way your money will last longer, and you won’t have to step because you overspent.

Know the House Edge

While the house edge for video poker machines usually varies depending on the casino, it is relatively low overall. Nonetheless, it’s important to know what the house edge of your chosen game is. If you are playing online, you will find this information on the website.

There is no standard house edge for all video poker games. But you will notice that different games have different payout percentages. To increase your odds of winning, choose games with the highest payout percentages.

Make Video Poker Strategy Work for You

To use the video poker strategy you selected properly, you need to spend time studying it; you should know it like the palm of your hand. Follow the tips below to use your strategy to its best ability.


Free Play

Free games are perfect if you need to improve your skills or practice a strategy. Most online casinos offer free versions of their video poker games so you can practice as often as you want.


Find A Strategy That Works for You

There’s no standard video poker strategy. What works for someone else might not work for you. Try out a variety of strategies and select one that suits you best. However, be flexible because even if you have a preference, you might need to switch strategies mid game.


Watch The Experts

The internet is filled with resources about video poker strategy. Videos can be especially helpful in beating the video poker machine. So, watch some videos and note how you can best increase your odds of winning when playing for real money.


Try Video Poker Trainers

Online video poker trainers teach you how to play video poker. You have two options: to download an app or use it via your web browser. To prepare you, the trainer will show you which moves to make and when to make them.

Best Software Providers

There are some first-class software providers that create the best online video poker games. CasinoTop always recommends players use trustworthy software providers for the best gameplay experience.

Evolution Gaming
Merkur Gaming
Play ‘n Go
Realtime Gaming

Playing games from the best software providers means exceptional graphics quality and smooth glitch-free gameplay.

Playing Video Poker at Brick-and-Mortar Casinos

At brick-and-mortar casinos you will find a wide variety of video poker machines with different denominations. Whether you are on a budget or a high roller, you can find a machine to suit your pocket. Below are a few things you need to know before playing at a land-based casino.


Slot Player Clubs

When joining land-based casinos, you often have the option of joining a slot player club. This is like a loyalty program that rewards loyal players with special promotions and deals.

If it is an option, definitely join to get more for the buck you spend on video poker. Club members will get a physical card that tracks your spending when inserted in a machine. This reports how much you bet per hour. This does not affect your odds of winning at all.


Know Your Machine

Video poker machines in land-based casinos are played the same as online video poker. To get started, insert your coins. Next, set your bet. If possible, place the maximum bet by hitting the max bet. Then simply hit ‘deal’ and you’ll get your cards.

After looking at your cards, choose which ones you would like to keep and which you want to drop. Under each card will be a hold button. Click on that for all the cards you want to keep. Then click on draw to drop all the cards you don’t want and receive replacements. You will receive a payout based on your hand and machine’s paytable. Different machines will have different payouts.


Stick To What You Know

It’s best to stick to the familiar when playing for real money at a casino. Don’t feel pressured to try out a new game, always go with the one you know like the palm of your hand.


Returns Are Important

Before playing any game, it’s important to have a look at the paytable. All video poker games have different payouts for different hands, so it is worth it to get to know it if you’re after the highest payout.

Put Theory to Practice

Now it’s time to put all this expert advice into practice, literally. This shouldn’t be too difficult with all your new video poker strategies. Finally, you’re ready to put this knowledge to the test. Go ahead and try our top poker video recommendations.