Video Poker is one of the most popular games at the casino thanks to its fun nature, strategy and big winning potential. The game is a kind of a cross between video slots and Poker, you’ll receive random cards, and you’ll choose which ones to keep and which ones to discard. All versions of Video Poker are based on the game of Five Card Draw Poker, but there are lots of variations of Video Poker available at most online casinos. is one of the best places to find Video Poker online, especially for Canadian players.

Rules: How to Play Video Poker?

Video Poker is based on the rule set of Five Card Draw Poker. While Video Poker is often compared to video slots, there are some key differences between them. For starters, Video Poker usually has a lower house edge. On top of that, you’ll be able to actively affect the result of the game by using strategy and choosing different options.

There are lots of different variations of Video Poker out there. However, they all follow the same basic rules. These are as follows:

  • You’re dealt five starting cards.
  • You can choose to either hold or discard any of the cards in your hand.
  • Any cards you discard will be replaced by a new, random card.
  • You can only draw new cards once.
  • The standard ranking of table Poker hands is used (more on that later).
  • If your hand matches any of the hands in the paytable, you’ll win the stated prize.

If you’re unsure about the rules of the game before you start, you can use the in-game help menu. This tells you all you need to know about how to play and the different payouts for each hand. Later on, in the guide, you’ll also be able to see the ranking of Poker hands. In most games of Video Poker, the highest-ranking hand is the Royal Flush, with the high card being the lowest.

One of the most common variations of Video Poker is known as Jacks or Better. In this game type, you have the same objective as normal, building a hand out of five cards. However, the game only pays out hands that are a pair of Jacks or higher. If you have a pair worth less than Jacks or a high card, you won’t win. Because there are no payouts for low ranking hands, this game tends to feature bigger payouts than other versions of Video Poker, making it highly popular with players.

Odds and Payouts

The exact payouts for Video Poker will depend on the game type you’re playing and the casino you’re playing at. It’s always a good idea to check the help section of the game and read through the game info and paytable before you get started.

As an example, here are some typical payouts for the Video Poker game Jacks or Better.:

  • Royal Flush: 250x
  • Straight Flush: 50x
  • Four of a Kind: 25x
  • Full House: 6x to 9x
  • Flush: 5x to 6x
  • Straight: 4x
  • Three of a Kind: 3x
  • Two Pair: 2x
  • Pair of Jacks or Better: 1x

All payouts are shown as a multiplier of your stake. So, as an example, if you bet $10 and landed a Royal Flush, you’d win $2500. In Video Poker, you only get the payout for the highest-ranking hand. So even if you have a hand with a Full House, Three of a Kind and Pair, you’d still just win the payout of the Full House.

Basic Strategies and Tips

Video Poker’s key difference over video slots is that you can choose to discard or hold cards. This adds an element of strategy and means that with effective gameplay, you can come out on top. The initial cards that are dealt along with the draw are completely random. However, you choose which cards you change, giving you control over the outcome.

Here is some basic strategy for playing Jacks or Better Video Poker:

  • If you have four cards towards a Straight or a Flush, hold them and draw for the fifth card.
  • If you have three cards towards a Royal Flush, hold them and draw for the fourth and fifth cards.
  • If you have any type of Pair, hold it and draw the other three cards.
  • Hold any three cards you have towards a straight flush and draw the other cards.
  • If you have none of these, hold any cards you have that are Jacks or higher and draw the rest.
  • If you have none of these, draw five new cards.

Your strategy may change slightly for other variations of Video Poker, but in general, these rules will help you make the most out of your time playing and increase your chances of winning.

Hand TypeDescription
Royal FlushThe five cards from A-10, all in the same suit. For example, A, K, Q, J, 10 all hearts.
Straight FlushFive cards all in the same suit, in sequential order. For example, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 all spades.
Four of a KindFour of the same cards. For example, four Ks
Full HouseA three of a kind and a pair. For example, three 8s and two Js.
FlushAny five cards of the same suit. For example, a 2, 5, 8, J, A all diamonds.
StraightAny five cards that are in sequential order. For example, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 of any suit.
Three of a KindThree of the same cards. For example, three 3s.
Two PairTwo different pairs. For example, two 4s and two 9s.
PairTwo of the same cards. For example, two 10s.
High CardThe highest card in your hand if no other hand can be made.

Video Poker Bonuses and Promotions

Before you play, make sure to grab a casino bonus or welcome offer to boost your bankroll. You can claim big bonuses at simply for signing up and making a deposit. Make sure you put that bonus to good use playing your favorite Video Poker.


Here are some of the commonly used terms and phrases used in Video Poker.

Ace high – This is any hand with no pair or any other combination, only an Ace as the highest-ranking card.

Action – Action is used to refer to the use of a particular machine. You can also use it to describe the amount you bet on the machine during a single session.

Credit – Credit is the number of coins you have to play with. Once you add money into your account, you’ll have credit to play Video Poker for real money. Win credits to cash out real cash.

Discard – To discard is to throw away or get rid of. In Video Poker, you can discard cards that you’re not using in your hand.

Draw – The draw is where you exchange cards in your hand. Select the cards you wish to discard and then hit draw to receive new cards. You can only do this once, so use it wisely.

Hold – When you’re dealt your initial cards, you’ll have the option between discarding them or holding them. Holding them means you’ll keep them instead of exchanging them for new ones. You’ll use this to build the best possible hand.

Face card – A face card is any of the royal cards. These are the Jacks, Queens and Kings.  

House edge – The house edge is the advantage that the casino has over the player. All casino games have a house edge, although some are larger than others. It’s always a good idea to check out the house edge of a game before you play. That will give you some indication of how likely it is that you’ll win.

Max bet – The max bet is the maximum amount you can bet on a single hand. This will vary depending on the game and the casino you play at. Some games offer much larger maximum bets than others. You can usually press the max bet button to instantly change your bet to the maximum.

Multi-hand – A lot of Video Poker games will have multi-hand options. These allow you to play multiple hands at once, as the name suggests. You’ll receive five cards for each hand and will place a bet on each. This can increase your chances of winning but also increases the risk.

Pat hand – A pat hand is any five-card hand that can’t be improved by drawing new cards. A hand that’s a flush, straight, flush straight, or royal flush is all examples of a pat hand. Some games may also consider a four of a kind a pat hand.

Payback – The payback or payout percentage is the amount the game will payout over time. This is effectively the inverse of the house edge, and will always be slightly lower than 100%. The best games have a good payback percentage, and it’s worth checking the details of the payback before you play.

Paytable – The paytable is the information that tells you the payouts for each hand in the game. It’s always important to check this before you play, so you know what kind of wins you can expect.

Mobile Experience

The games work perfectly on mobile and are optimized for touchscreens. You can hold your phone in any orientation, and there are no issues when playing any of the Video Poker options at


Video Poker is great fun to play, but if you ever get stuck and aren’t sure what to do, there are options available for you. First, check the in-game help menu to read the rules and payouts. You can also speak to the friendly customer support team to ask any questions 24/7 on live chat, phone or email.


Is online Video Poker legal?

Yes, provided you’re playing at a legal online casino, Video Poker and other casino games are perfectly legal to play in Canada. Make sure that the site you’re playing at is licensed by a relevant gaming authority such as the UK Gambling Commission or the Malta Gaming Authority.

Can I use welcome bonuses to play Video Poker?

In most cases, yes. Most online casinos will let you use your welcome bonus however you want. There are terms, of course, but you’ll generally be able to use your matched deposit bonus to play Video Poker if that’s what you want.

How do you beat Video Poker machines?

Winning at Video Poker is mostly dependent on luck. That said, there are still strategies to come out on top. Make sure you know the rules before you play, choose a game with a good payout percentage and keep a close eye on your bankroll. The ideal Video Poker games have a high RTP, low variance and are fun to play.

Can I play for free?

Yes, all good online casinos will let you try out a game before you play it for real money. If you’re a beginner and need to get some practice in, this is the best place for it. Choose to play in demo mode, and you can play for as long as you like to get a feel for the game. Once you’re ready, you can play the real thing for real cash and hopefully win big.

Do I need special software to play?

No, modern online casinos are easy to use, and all you need to do is sign up to play. Whether you’re playing on a desktop or a mobile device, simply load up your online casino in your browser, and you can instantly start playing your favorite games.

Is Video Poker better than slots?

That depends on who you ask. Some people prefer the simplicity of Video Poker, while others prefer the variety and bonuses of slots. Why not try out both and see which you like best?

Are video poker machines rigged?

No, all Video Poker games use a random number generator (RNG) to determine the outcome. This means that the result isn’t preprogrammed by the computer and can’t be affected by any other factor. All games at licensed online casinos are audited and tested for fairness. This means that provided the site you play at has a license from a reputable gambling authority, it will be fair to play.

Play Video Poker for Real Money

Video Poker is an excellent alternative to video slots as it gives the player more control over the outcome of the game. With low house edge and great payouts, it’s little wonder why so many Canadian players are choosing to play. Sign up to today for the best place to play Video Poker online.