Pai Gow Poker is a popular variation of Chinese poker, played at a wide range of casinos around the world. In order to win, players must organize a seven-card hand into one five-card and one seven-card poker hand. The strength of each hand is measured against the dealer, and whoever has the highest hands wins.
The key to being profitable at Pai Gow Poker is to adopt the House Way strategy. The House Way is the set of rules by which the dealer must operate. It dictates how the dealer should split up his or her hand when playing Pai Gow Poker. Because these rules have been devised by the casino, they provide the dealer with an apparent house edge, so it is beneficial to the player to adopt the same strategy.
If you are dealt two pairs, the decision of whether or not to split them up can be quite difficult. There are several ways to split up your pairs, depending on which cards you have. If you have AA and another pair, use the other pair for your low hand. If you have two pairs higher than ten, split them up. If there is an Ace in addition to your two pairs, place the Ace and your second-highest single card in the low hand.
Players are not advised to split up straights and flushes unless they have particular pairs in their hands. For example, if they have a pair of aces and another pair, the aces should be placed in the low hand. If they have two pairs over 10 then they should also be split up.
Four-of-a-kind hands are only kept together if they are low. If they are medium to high, then they should be split up. With high card hands, take the second- and third-highest cards to make the low hand. With a one-pair hand, you should take the two highest single cards and place them in your low hand. If you have three-of-a-kind, only break it up if you have three Aces. Royal flushes and Straight flushes should be played as-is while Full Houses should be split up, placing the pair in the low hand.