What Different Types Of Poker Tournaments Can I Play Online?

If you want to get into playing online poker tournaments, but don’t know where to start, here we will answer your questions.

How do Poker Tournaments work?

When you play in an online poker tournaments, you buy a stack of chips for an agreed price. It usually ranges from 1,500 to 3,000 chips. You play until you either have no chips left. Also if anyone eliminates you, or you are the last man standing with all the chips.

Check our articles 7 Tips for winning in small stakes online poker tournaments and How does online Poker work?

How is it different from a cash game?

The chips in a cash game have an actual dollar value. Within agreed limits, you can purchase more chips whenever you like. You can also leave the game whenever you like.

When you play in tournaments, you need to be prepared to be in it for the long haul. Better levels increase as games progress which helps limit the length of the play by obliging players to play hands while they have bankroll remaining.

Where can you find tournaments online?

If you are a newcomer, you’ll find such sites as 888 Poker, PokerStars, Paddy Power, Sky Poker and Ladbrokes a good place to start. They are all trustworthy and reputable and offer great sign-up bonuses and an extensive choice of tournaments.

What types of online tournament are there?

There is huge variety out there on the online poker tournaments scene. Here is a basic breakdown of the types of tournaments on offer to help you find what you are looking for.

Freezeout tournaments

It is another name for a standard poker tournaments. You get your stack in return for the buy-in fee, and you play until you have not more chips. The winner is the one left with all the chips. The top 10% to 15% of players entered into the tournament will take home some cash.

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Rebuy tournaments

As the name suggests, and unlike the standard ‘Freezeout’ tournaments, in a ‘Rebuy’ event you are given an opportunity to buy more chips. It can make the game a bit more exciting as players may feel more inclined to take early risks.

Typically the ‘Rebuy’ offer might be during the first hour of play. Within this time you may be able to rebuy a fixed or unlimited number of times depending on the particular tournament.

Usually, you can click on the ‘Add More Chips’ button when your stack is the same or less than when you started. The ‘Rebuy’ amount tends to be of the same value as the original buy-in.

You may also have the option to ‘add-on’ during the break at the end of the ‘Rebuy’ period, although this won’t automatically be on offer to you.

They will announce the Prize Pool only after the ‘Rebuy’ period is over.

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Sit & Go tournaments.

Also known as S&Gs or SNGs, these Poker tournaments do not have a scheduled start. Instead, they begin when the seats are full. Look for the ‘Sit & Go’ tab in the main lobby of the online casino. Tournaments vary in size between 1 and 20 tables. The number of players could range from two in a heads-up match to hundreds. Beginners might be better off starting in smaller tournaments.

Sit & Go tournaments are popular due to the variety of formats they have on offer.

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Satellite tournaments

These are tournaments that have as their prize entry into another tournament either online or big live events. For instance the World Series of Poker, European Poker Tour, Aussie Millions and the Irish Open.

Under this category, you’ll also find Steps tournaments. These are made up of a series of single table Satellite events which can take place over a period of weeks. There are typically five steps. The prizes in the early rounds will be an entry into the next step, and the end prize will be a significant cash award. It is possible to buy-in at any level. However, the buy-in will increase at every step and the prize in the final step.

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Knock-out bounty tournaments

In these types of tournaments, a percentage of your buy-in (generally between 20% and 50%) is set aside as a bounty which goes to whoever knocks you out. Bounties are awarded throughout the tournament at the point when players get taken out. On some sites, they will place bounties on certain ‘marked’ players, who may be pros or celebrities. Rather than every player in the tournament so you can identify them in the tournament lobby. In 100% bounty tournaments, where everyone has a price on their head, the prize pool may be entirely replaced by the bounty payouts.

The advantage of playing in bounty tournaments is that you can win cash throughout even if you don’t make it to the end.

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Turbo/Speed tournaments

As the name suggests turbo tournaments move at high speed, this is because the blind levels go up faster than in standard games. These fast increasing betting levels and quick rounds make for an exciting experience.

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Private tournaments

A number online casinos allow registered players who have attained a certain number of loyalty points to take part in private real-money single table tournaments online. It makes it possible for friends, family, colleagues and old poker rivals to play against each other exclusively on the site.

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Guaranteed tournaments

These are poker events where there is a guarantee on the size of the prize pool. The size of the prizes varies from site to site. You can identify the guaranteed events in the site’s tournament lobby. What this means is that the sites are ensuring that the prize money will be at least a certain amount even if there are not enough buy-ins to reach that figure. It could be greater if the number of participants is more than expected.

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Freeroll tournaments

Freeroll tournaments require no entry fee. It is an attractive place to start for beginners looking to build a bankroll from nothing. Prizes come in the form of cash, points, merchandise, and entry into other tournaments.

Be sure to check any entry restrictions when you sign-up as some may require a deposit of funds to open an account to play.