Online 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo Poker

In most poker games, the best hand wins. But 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo Poker is a bit different. In this variant, the pot is split between the highest and lowest hand. It’s not quite as straightforward as that, of course. But it’s certainly an interesting style of poker for players who want to try something new.

Online 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo is an interesting poker variant based on Omaha Hi/Lo. Five hole cards are dealt face-down to each player at the table. Another five community cards are dealt face-up. These community cards can be used by all players at the table. However, players must use precisely two of their five hole cards and three of the community cards to make the best possible five-card poker hand. For example, if a player receives four aces within their five hole cards, they may only use two of these for a pair—not all of them for four-of-a-kind.

The pot is split between the highest-ranking hand and the lowest ranking hand. You must stick to the rule of using two of your hole cards and three from the board, but you can use different combinations to form high and low hands. To find out more about 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo hand rankings, take a look at the poker hands page.

5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo is played with an 8 or better qualifier. To win the low pot, a low hand must be comprised of five cards all ranked eight or less. Low hands work precisely the same way as they do in Omaha Hi/Lo. If no players have a qualifying low hand, the whole pot will go to the high hand.

Low hands are ranked using the ‘ace to five’ or ‘California’ system. This means that straights and flushes don’t count against a hand. And that aces are always low in the low hand. Because of this, the best hand is a wheel: 5, 4, 3, 2, A. To understand how low hand rankings work, take a look at the list below. It ranks ten hands from the least powerful (#1, which will rarely win) to the most powerful (#10, which is the nuts). Note that this is not an exhaustive list.

  1. 8, 7, 6, 5, 4

  2. 8, 7, 6, 5, 3

  3. 8, 6, 4, 2, A

  4. 8, 4, 3, 2, A

  5. 7, 6, 5, 4, 2

  6. 7, 6, 5, 2, A

  7. 7, 5, 4, 3, 2

  8. 6, 5, 4, 3, 2

  9. 6, 4, 3, 2, A

  10. 5, 4, 3, 2, A

Low hands are ranked from the highest card downwards. Using the examples above, hand #8 is known as six-low. This is because the highest card in the hand is a six. Hand #5 is seven-low, and hand #2 is eight-low. Because some players will have the same highest card, sometimes the hand is identified by the next highest card too. For instance, hand #9 could be called a six-four low, beating hand #8 which is a six-five low.

Remember, straights and flushes don’t count against low hands. So, if you make a low hand which is also a flush or a straight, this could prove to be a powerful hand. This is because it could win both the high and low halves of the pot. This is known as a ‘scoop’.

Types of 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo Games

There are three different formats offered for 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo:

  • Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo - Specific betting limits are applied in each game. And on each round of betting.
  • Pot Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo - The maximum bet is capped at the total amount in the pot.
  • No Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo - A player can bet as many chips as they have available.

Rules for Playing 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo

During the game, the nominal dealer is indicated by the dealer button. The player seated immediately clockwise to the button posts the small blind. This is a forced bet before any cards are dealt. Similarly, the player immediately clockwise from the small blind posts the big blind. This is typically double the size of the small blind. But in some instances, the blinds may vary.

The big blind is the same as the small bet in Fixed Limit games. Usually, the small blind is half the size of the big blind. However, this is not always the case. For instance, in a $2/$4 Fixed Limit game, the big blind is $2 and the small blind is $1. But in a $15/$30 Fixed Limit game, the big blind is $15 and the small blind is $10.

If you’re playing Pot Limit or No Limit games, things are easier to remember. The games are referred to based on the size of the blinds. For instance, a $1/$2 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo game has a big blind of $2 and a small blind of $1.

Once each player has been dealt five hold cards, the betting action begins. It starts with the player immediately clockwise from the big blind. This position is also known as under the gun.

Pre-flop

Once players have checked their hole cards, they have the chance to call or raise the big blind. Action begins under the gun, which is considered a live bet on this round. The player must decide whether to fold, call or raise. For instance, if the big blind was $2, the cost to call would also be $2. A raise would have to be $4 or more in total, or if the player wanted to exit the hand they could simply fold. Action moves clockwise around the table.

Note: Betting structures vary depending on whether you’re playing Fixed Limit, Pot Limit or No Limit. You can find out more about each of them below.

This betting pattern continues in each round until all players that haven’t folded have placed an equal amount into the pot.

The flop

Once the first round of betting is finished, the flop is dealt. This consists of three community cards dealt face-up which all active players can use. In this round, betting begins with the first active player clockwise from the button and moves clockwise. If you’re playing Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo, all bets and raises on the flop will be in increments of the small bet. For instance, in a $2/$4 game the amount will be $2.

The turn

After the round of betting on the flop is finished, the turn is dealt. This is one card dealt face-up, meaning there will now be four community cards in total. As with the flop, betting begins with the first active player clockwise from the button and moves clockwise. If you’re playing Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo, all bets and raises on the turn will be in increments of the big bet. For instance, in a $2/$4 game the amount will be $4.

The river

After the round of betting on the turn is finished, the river is dealt. This is the fifth and final community card. As with the flop and turn, betting begins with the first active player clockwise from the button and moves clockwise until complete.

The showdown

If more than one player remains when the final betting round has finished, the last player to bet or raise shows their hand first. If no betting took place on the river, the player immediately clockwise from the button reveals their hand first. The player with the best five-card hand for high wins half of the pot. The player with the best five-card hand for low wins the other half. Keep in mind that for each hand, players must use precisely two of their own hole cards and three community cards.

If players show identical hands, the high and low pots will be divided equally between the players holding the best hands. If nobody has an eight-low or better, there will be no low pot. In this instance, the entire pot goes to the highest-ranked hand.

Once the chips have been designated to the winning player or players, a new hand is ready to be played. The button moves clockwise to the next player, and play proceeds.

Fixed Limit, Pot Limit, and No Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo

The rules are generally the same for 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo whether you’re playing Fixed Limit, No Limit or Pot Limit. But there are some exceptions:

  • Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo

    If you’re playing Limit Omaha Hi/Lo, betting occurs in predetermined, structured amounts. For the pre-flop and flop betting rounds, all bets and raises are equal to the amount of the big blind. For the turn and river, this amount is doubled.

    Players are allowed up to four bets each per round. Using all four would comprise of a bet, a raise, a re-raise, and a final raise which is known as a cap.

  • Pot Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo

    The minimum bet in Pot Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo is equal to the size of the big blind. Players also have the option to bet up to the size of the pot.

    The minimum raise must be equal to or more than any previous bet or raise within the same round. For instance, if one player bets $5 and the next player wants to raise, they must increase it by at least $5 more (for a total of $10).

    The maximum raise that can be made at any time is the same as the pot size at that time. This consists of the active pot itself as well as all bets on the table, plus the amount the active player needs to call before raising.

    For instance, if the pot is $100 with no betting having taken place in that round, the maximum bet at that stage is $100. Once the first player bets $100, play moves to the next player, who can raise it to the pot size, which will now be $400. This would consist of a $100 call to match the bet, which would bring the pot total to $300. This means they can raise an additional $300 on top for a total bet of $400.

    In this variant of the game, there is no limit or cap on how many raises are permitted.

  • No Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo

    The minimum bet in No Limit 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo is equal to the size of the big blind. Players also have the option to bet as much as they like. This includes betting all of their chips in one go.

    The minimum raise must be equal to or more than any previous bet or raise within the same round. For instance, if one player bets $5 and the next player wants to raise, they must increase it by at least $5 more (for a total of $10).

    The maximum raise is only defined by the size of your stack. If a player wants to, they can bet all of their chips at once.

    In this variant of the game, there is no limit or cap on how many raises are permitted.

When playing with us, don’t worry about betting outside of the minimums and maximums allowed. Our software will only let players bet within the boundaries of what’s permitted.

Learn How to Play 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo for Free

If you’re not used to Online 5 Card Omaha Hi/Lo, it might be a good idea to try it for free first. To do this, you can play at our free poker tables. This will let you get to grips with the format before making the jump to real money poker.

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