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Omaha Hi Lo Starting Hands

Best Starting Hands in Omaha Hi Lo

Omaha and Omaha Hi Lo is a much more complicated game then Hold’em simply because you have a wider range of starting hands seen by players due to the additional cards and combinations players can make. If you’ve never played Omaha and not quite sure what we’re referring to you can read our “How to Play Omaha Guide” which will help you with the basics of the game including format.

Since Omaha and Omaha Hi Lo use four hole cards, it’s absolutely critical that you understand the starting hand requirements in both versions. Making poor decisions on which hands to play and which hands to fold will ultimately cost you your bankroll. Although you'll find plenty of beginners do end up falling for some of the more common omaha myths when choosing their starting hands.

Below you will find general outline to the starting hand requirements in Omaha Hi Lo. Omaha Hi Lo allows you to play for both the hi and low pot and because of this the starting hand requirements in Omaha 8 vary significantly from Omaha Hi since the goal is to be able to play for and win both pots.  The starting hands below are dependent on situation, although you may not be able to bluff your way through this game, you can pick up a few additional big blinds through position and restricting your starting hands. Remember two things – the game is made up by strong hands and you need to play for both pots if you plan on coming out ahead.

Premium Starting Hands in Omaha High-Lo

The best starting hands in Omaha Hi Lo include:

1. A-A-2-x
2. A-A-3-x
3. A-2-3-x
4. A-2-4-x
5. A-2-x-x
6. A-3-4-x
7. A-A-x-x

While the chart above gives you a general outline of the best starting hands in Omaha Hi Lo, you do need to realize that it is still quite broad as the ‘x’ represents nearly any other card. A suited hand is significantly stronger than a non-suited hand even if they both fall in the same category. Suppose you have the option to play A-A-Q-K rainbow or A-A-2-K suited. The obvious choice of hand would be the later since your able to play for high and low, while giving you a chance at a flush, full house, or straight for hi hands. A tip to keep in mind when determining your hand strength in Omaha Hi Lo using the chart above is that the majority of cards 5 – 9 are essentially worthless. They can be used to pick up a few blinds when in position or playing against  a loose table.

Ten of the Best Starting Hands in Omaha High-Low

These hands are considered the top hands in Omaha Hi Lo:

1. A-A-2-3 Double-suited
2. A-A-2-4 Double-suited
3. A-A-2-3 Suited
4. A-A-2-5 Double-suited
5. A-A-2-4 Suited
6. A-A-3-4 Double-suited
7. A-A-2-3 Non-suited
8. A-A-2-2 Double-suited
9. A-A-3-5 Double-suited
10. A-A-2-6 Double-suited

Playable Starting Hands in Omaha High-Low

Below is a summary of hands that are playable starting hands in Omaha Hi Lo

A-A-2-x
A-A-3-x
A-A-4-5
A-2-3-x
A-2-K-K
A-2-Q-Q
A-2-J-J
A-3-4-5
A-A-x-x
A-2-K-Q
A-2-K-J
A-2-x-x (suited Ace)
A-3-K-K
A-3-4-x
2-3-4-5 (This hand is dependent on the Ace hitting the flop. If the flop doesn’t show an Ace you should fold)
J-Q-K-A
T-J-Q-K
K-K-Q-J
Q-J-T-9
2-3-4-x (Another hand that depends on the Ace. If no Ace hits the flop, fold the hand on first bet).