Coral Poker tournaments
Dec 2019

How To Host A Brilliant Poker Game In 5 Easy Steps

by Christine in Features, Gambling Tips category

We know a lot of you have unshakeable traditions and rituals every Christmas and New Year’s. And we also know you’re big fans of gambling. That’s why you’re here, right? Sometimes those traditions and hobbies collide. Lots of you hold annual poker games at your house on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day. But maybe you need a hand to up your game this year? That’s where the poker host guide comes in.

We’ve gathered all the best tips and tricks for having the ideal poker bash at your house. So all you need to do is follow the step-by-step poker host guide and enjoy the ride.

Step 1: The invites

Sometimes this is predetermined. The same people always play every single year. But if you’re trying to start a new tradition, you could be starting from scratch on the invite list.

Have a think about your friends. Maybe your bestie isn’t crazy about poker. Maybe you’ve a friend of a friend who loves to play? Think about the type of game you want to play in your home. Are you into a casual or serious vibe? Then invite friends based on their love of the game. We promise if your best friend hates the game, she’s going to be happy to be left off the list! She can call over after for drinks with the winner, after all.

The next thing you need to do is figure out how many people to invite. For an intimate game, four is a solid number. Then you can add on that, but we wouldn’t go to more than 10. Over 10 and you’re looking at a two-table set up (or just a very long winded game). Hover between 4 and 10 and you’ll have a manageable group.

Step 2: Practice

While you’re waiting for your friends to confirm their attendance, why not get in the mood yourself and play a few hands online. Not only is that fun, but it’ll also help sharpen your game in front of your friends. Because there’s one thing making an arse out of yourself online anonymously, but it’s another thing entirely having it brought up by friends irl for years after.

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Step 3: Equipment

Stock up on all the essentials as soon as you can. There’s nothing worse than scrambling for something 30 minutes before the first guest is due to arrive.

  • Table that fits your party
  • Chair for each person
  • Poker chips (including dealer, big blind and little blind buttons)
  • Two decks of cards
  • Timer

Don’t have all the stuff to hand? Our top poker host guide is to borrow from pals. Chances are if you have poker loving friends coming, they’ll have a spare deck of cards or two hanging around. And that’s much easier than heading to the shops during the sales!

Step 4: Rules

This sounds boring, but we swear it’s important. You are the host, so it’s up to you to set out the rules of your game. Do it well before your guests arrive and be reasonably firm about it. You should have a think about the following things:

  • Format
  • Re-buys
  • Tournament or cash game
  • Blind levels
  • Blind times

If you’re new to hosting, consult a friend to find out what might be right for your group. But if you don’t have anyone to ask, our advice is to keep it simple. A Texas Hold’em No Limits Freezeout with 15-minute blinds should satisfy most of your guests.

Step 5: Have fun!

For some people, this is easier said than done. But this is what it’s really all about, isn’t it? So when your friends come, relax, kick back, chat, laugh and play a great game of poker.

Don’t get snippy at a bad beat or if someone spills wine on the sofa. Enjoy the moment and have lots of festive cheer. And if you beat them and end up coming up on top, be gracious and buy everyone a round of drinks the next time you’re at the boozer!

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