So, you’ve come to the decision that poker is where it’s at and you want to grab yourself a big piece of poker pie, especially now that partypoker and DTD are massively shaking up the UK poker scene.
Well I can tell you, poker, like Guinness, is definitely an acquired taste. But who hasn’t acquired an insatiable taste for Guinness? And I can guarantee, if you give it time, you’ll also acquire that kind of unquenchable taste for poker that I have. I never thought I would love sushi; uncooked, slimy, dead fish with one unnerving eye unremittingly staring at me. But now you can’t keep me away from the slimy little critters.
Taking your seat at the felt for the first time can be extremely daunting, but it doesn’t need to be. Whether playing online or live, always remember that you’re paying good money to play and deserve to be there as much as the next person. You’ll make some mistakes to start with, play out of turn or inadvertently mention you’ve folded an ace while the hand is still in play. And make no mistake, people will moan.
But don’t worry about it as they would have made similar mistakes at some point, too. It’s a bit like table road rage. Most of us, at one time or another, have had a go at the rookie driver cutting us off at a roundabout. How easily we forget that once upon a time the shoe was on the other foot.
Here are a couple of poker tips to get you started, hopefully helping you feel less like a numpty on your maiden voyage to the casino.
#1 Familiarize yourself with the casino
Take a good look around when you arrive. Find out where poker is played, where you can change your money into chips, where the toilets are, where you can sign onto the waiting list and, most importantly, where the bar is.
#2 Find the Card Room
Don’t get confused with casino table variations of poker. The casino floor is littered with different types of games, including Three card and Four card poker, Caribbean Stud, Pai Gow, Black Jack, Baccarat, Roulette, Craps, Wheel of Fortune, slots and video poker. On these tables, you’ll be battling the house.
Find the card room, the epicentre of poker tournaments and cash games where you’ll pit yourselves against human adversaries.
#3 Take your time deciding what to play
If you can’t work out what is being played, ask a dealer or the floor manager as they’ll be more than happy to talk you through it.
Don’t be embarrassed if you can only afford a minimum buy-in. Remember, you are paying to play in a recreational activity for your own enjoyment. The establishment wants you to come back, so they should be very helpful and accommodating. If all of the games being played are too expensive, the floor manager can suggest more affordable games at alternate times.
#4 Find the Cage
This is where you’ll exchange your money for chips. You can give the dealer cash once sat at a table but exchanging it at the cage will save you time and energy.
#5 Get on the waiting list
You can’t sit down at any empty seat in a card room. You must put your name down on a waiting list. You’ll be shown straight to the table once seats become available. You will go on a waiting list if all seats are spoken for. Card rooms can get really busy so it’s a good idea to call ahead and put your name on the list. Sometimes casinos display the waiting list on a monitor or a whiteboard, or they may just call your initials when the time has come. Make sure you’re paying attention so you don’t miss your spot.
#6 Read the Casino rules
Every casino has different rules, so while waiting to be seated, find out where the casino rules are displayed and give them a good read.
I recommend you watch the action while you wait as it’s a perfect time to learn. Every hand is important so watch and learn, even during the hands that don’t involve you.
So, after reading this and visiting a casino, are you ready to play in the Grand Prix Million at DTD in May?
Join the UK partypoker facebook forum where you will find many like-minded individuals, many of whom are about to take their first trip to casino for a live poker experience. We exchange stories and you can ask all the questions your heart desires. You can also win seats into live games, participate in many freerolls. Membership is exclusive to those that live in the UK and have a partypoker account.
- You must Retweet the specified tweet , “RT for a chance to win a T-shirt…”, in order to be eligible
- You must Retweet the specified tweet , “RT for a chance to win a T-shirt…”, by 23:59 GMT on Monday, 6th April to be eligible
- A winner will be chosen at random and notified via Twitter on Tuesday, 7th April
- You must like and leave a comment on the specified FB post, from 1st April at 18:00, mentioning one of the six tips in this article by 23:59 GMT on Monday, 6th April to be eligible
- A winner will be chosen at random and notified via Facebook on Tuesday, 7th April