Let It Ride is a simple casino game based on poker but played against the house rather than against other players. The object of the game is to get the best possible 5 card poker hand and win a payout. If your final hand consists of a pair of 10s or better, you win a payout. You do not have to beat the dealer or any other players; simply achieve a paying hand and you win.
Whether you’re a seasoned veteran looking for a new Let It Ride casino site or are a complete newbie looking for guidance, you’ve come to the right place. My purpose here is to recommend a few of the best places to play Let It Ride online and explain the nuts and bolts of this popular game. By the time you finish this page, you’ll have everything you need to get started.
I consider these the best Let It Ride casinos because each of these is well-known in the industry as a safe place to play. If you’re lucky enough to win a bunch of cash, there’s no question you’ll be paid. Many people before you have already visited these sites and had no problem getting their winnings when they were done.
The true quality of any Let It Ride site is shown after you’re done playing. Any halfway decent operator will treat you like royalty while you’re active at the tables, but its true colors show when you indicate you’re done and ready to make a withdrawal. Sites that truly care about their players make every effort to provide fast and hassle-free payouts.
When it comes to Let It Ride in particular, I always make it a point to check the payouts for winning hands. The house advantage is derived from the payout odds, so there’s an incentive for operators to be stingy with how much wining hands are paid. The higher the payouts, the lower the house advantage.
It is especially important to note the payouts for smaller but more frequent winning hands. Anyone can promise bigger payouts for hands that are extremely rare, but it is the common, everyday hands that have the greatest impact on the house advantage. At a minimum, I like to see the following payouts for each hand:
- Pair of 10s or Better: 1 to 1
- Two Pairs: 2 to 1
- Three of a Kind: 3 to 1
- Straight: 5 to 1
- Flush: 8 to 1
- Full House: 11 to 1
- Four of a Kind: 50 to 1
- Straight Flush: 200 to 1
- Royal Flush: 1,000 to 1
This pay table combined with smart play results in a house edge of a respectable 3.5%. This means that over the long term, you can expect to lose about $3.50 for every $100 wagered at the table. When casinos deviate from the above payouts, the house advantage can increase dramatically. Stick with the best Let It Ride websites to ensure your money lasts longer and you maximize the odds of walking away a winner.
Let It Ride Bonuses
One of the many advantages of playing Let It Ride online is that you can get deposit bonuses just for signing up and playing the game. Gambling sites are always giving out cash in an effort to lure new customers in away from the competition. The general agreement is that if you make a deposit, the casino site you choose will give you extra money to play the games.
A part of this agreement is that every bonus must be “cleared” by playing in real money games. In return for giving you free cash, casino sites ask that you place a certain dollar amount worth of wagers before you may withdraw the bonus or any winnings derived from placing bets with the bonus money.
A typical wagering requirement for bonuses is something in the neighborhood of 20 times the bonus + deposit amount. For example, let’s say you claim a 100% deposit bonus by depositing $50 and getting $50 in bonus cash. If the rollover was set at 20x, you would need to place a total sum of wagers equal to $2,000 ($50 + $50 times 20).
One thing you need to be on the lookout for with Let It Ride bonuses is eligibility of the game in meeting the clearing requirements. Casino bonuses are generally geared towards slots, keno and scratch card players due to those games having a higher house advantage. Let It Ride doesn’t make as much money for casinos, so not all bonuses can be cleared by playing Let It Ride.
In my experience, about half of all bonuses are compatible with Let It Ride. Sometimes it works; sometimes it doesn’t. You should keep this in mind and always check the terms and conditions before you claim any bonus. Make sure Let It Ride works with any bonus you’re considering getting. If not, it may be best to either pass on the bonus or choose a different casino site.
How to Play Let It Ride Online
Let It Ride is very accessible to newbies. No prior experience with poker or any other game is necessary. As long as you understand the hand rankings, you have everything you need to give this game an honest shot.
Each hand of Let It Ride begins with you placing three bets of equal size on the table in front of you. If you’re playing at a $1 table, you’ll start each hand with a total of $3 worth of wagers. You will later have opportunities to take back two of these wagers.
After the wagers have been placed, the dealer passes three cards to you (these are your “hole cards”) and deals two cards face-down in the middle of the table. These face-down cards are called “community cards” because they are shared by all players at the table. Eventually, these two community cards will be used in conjunction with your three hole cards to form a five card poker hand.
After the cards have been dealt, you may now look at your three hole cards. Now, it’s time to make your first decision. If you don’t feel confident with what you see, you may take back one of your wagers. If you do like what you see, you may “let it ride” and leave your wager on the table.
Next, one of the community cards is revealed. Now you are given the option to take back one more of your wagers. If you like the way your hand is shaping up, you may “let it ride” to leave your wager on the table.
Next, the second community card is revealed. The two community cards plus your three hole cards are used to form your five card poker hand. If your hand consists of a pair of 10s or better, you receive a payout as indicated by the pay table. Most casino sites use the same pay table as shown above.
The defining feature of this game is the ability to take back up to two of your wagers. There are few casino games in which you get the option to take back parts of your original wagers. In Let It Ride, you may take back one, two or none of your three original bets.
Optional Progressive Jackpot Side Bet
Online Let It Ride sites offer an optional side bet that qualifies you for a progressive jackpot. If you want to participate, you can pay $1.00 by clicking on the progressive jackpot button on the table. This jackpot grows over time as every dollar paid goes directly to the current jackpot.
Paying to participate in the progressive jackpot qualifies you to additional payouts if you achieve a stronger-than-usual hand. These payouts are paid in addition to the normal payouts for winning hands. Most sites use the following pay table for the progressive jackpot:
- Flush: $75 payout
- Full House: $100 payout
- 4 of a Kind: $500 payout
- Straight Flush: Payout equal to 10% of the current jackpot
- Royal Flush: Payout equal to 100% of the current jackpot
Your final hand in Let It Ride is ranked according to traditional poker hand rankings. The following list ranks hands beginning with the lowest at the top and then working down to the highest ranked hand.
- Pair of 10s or Better: Two cards of the same rank, 10 or higher. Example: 2-3-5-Jack-Jack
- Two Pairs: Two different pairs in the same hand. Example: 2-2-7-Ace-Ace
- Three of a Kind: Three cards of the same rank. Example: 8-9-9-9-Queen
- Straight: Five cards in sequential order. Example: 5-6-7-8-9
- Flush: Five cards of the same suit. Example: 2-3-6-7-9 all of hearts
- Full House: Two cards of one rank and three cards of another rank. Example: 2-2-9-9-9
- Four of a Kind: Four cards of the same rank. Example: 4-Jack-Jack-Jack-Jack
- Straight Flush: Five sequential cards of the same suit. Example: 2-3-4-5-6 all of spades
- Royal Flush: The cards ten through ace all of the same suit. Example: 10-Jack-Queen-King-Ace all of diamonds
Let It Ride vs. Let Them Ride
I’d like to take a minute to explain the difference between “Let It Ride and “Let Them Ride.” Most online casinos call it by the latter name due to the former being a registered trademark of Shuffle Master (a manufacturer of casino products that originally devised Let it Ride). The only other difference between the two games is the order in which bets are placed.
In the online variant, you place only one bet at the beginning of each hand. After your look at your hole cards, you are given the option to stay or to place a second bet of equal value. After the first community card is revealed, you are once again given an option to stay or place another bet.
This difference is purely cosmetic. In the end, you still decide whether you have 1, 2 or 3 active bets at the end of each hand. This changes nothing in the strategy or house advantage of Let It Ride.
The decisions you make in Let It Ride have an impact on how much money you win or lose over the long term. Make good decisions and you’ll keep the house advantage limited to around 3.5%. Make poor decisions and the advantage quickly moves further in the casino’s favor.
This strategy works for both the traditional version (Let It Ride) and the online version (Let Them Ride). I’m going to word it as though you’re playing online, since that’s the assumption. If you play this game in a brick-and-mortar casino, the same concepts apply.
Since there is no bluffing or competition against a dealer or other players, the entirety of Let It Ride strategy revolves around choosing when to place additional wagers.
First Decision: When to Add the Second Bet
Remember; the first bet is compulsory in Let Them Ride. The first time you have the option to add a bet is after you have seen your three hole cards. If you should add a second bet if you have any of the following 3-card hands:
- A pair of 10s or higher
- Three cards of the same rank
- Three cards to a royal flush
- Three sequential cards of the same suit ranked 3-4-5 or higher
Second Decision: When to Add the Third Bet
After you make the first decision, one of the community cards is revealed. Now, you have a total of four cards in your hand. You should add the third bet if you have any of the following 4-card poker hands:
- Pair of 10s or higher
- Three or four cards of the same rank
- Four cards of the same suit
- Four cards in sequential order ranked 3-4-5-6 or higher
- Four cards all ranked 10 or higher