Being the Banker

You won’t have the opportunity to be the bank in Pai Gow Poker when you play pai gow at online casinos. The casino software is designed so that the house also functions as the banker. The advantage is that there’s less to think about and you’ll have less of your bankroll at risk (we’ll explain why in a moment). The drawback is that you’ll lose out on the chance to slice the house edge.

On this page, we’ll explain what it means to be the bank in Pai Gow Poker. A lot of live casinos allow players to bank, so we’ll make sure you’re prepared to take advantage of the opportunity.

Why You Should Be The Bank In Pai Gow

Normally, you’re playing against the house rather than against the other players at your table. When you’re the banker in Pai Gow Poker, the other players become your opponents. You’ll pay their winnings from your bankroll, which means you’ll have more of your money at risk during each hand. But, because you’ll be collecting their losses, it also means you can scale your winnings.

The reason experts recommend that you be the bank in Pai Gow Poker is because the rules shift slightly in your favor. For example, as a player, you lose ties. As the banker, you win ties. Also, you normally pay a 5% commission whenever you win both hands. When you bank, you’ll still pay the 5% commission to the house, but it’s based on your net winnings from the hand. Those advantages seem small, but they shave the normal 2.66% edge to 1.46%.

As a side note, you can request the house to co-bank with you. They’ll pay 50% of the other players’ winnings, but they’ll take 50% of their losses (i.e. your winnings). They’ll also force you to split your cards the “house way” which you can learn the strategy for splitting two pair that they house uses when playing pai gow.

Where To Enjoy Playing Pai Gow Poker Online

Very few, if any, online casinos let you be the bank in Pai Gow Poker. The software is designed to only accommodate one player: you. Because you’re the only player, there’s nobody to bank against. That said, we have found Bodog Casino to offer one of the most engaging playing experiences online. Their Flash gaming environment allows you to play Pai Gow Poker through your browser without logging in (unless you’d like to make real money bets).

Visit Bodog Casino and spend a few minutes playing Pai Gow Poker in your browser. You’ll understand why thousands of online gamblers prefer Bodog to other casino sites.