best real money poker tournaments online

Bovada's Poker Tournaments

There’s a reason tournaments are the most popular way to play at Bovada Poker. This guide will show you how to lock your seat at the table.

Bovada’s Poker Tournaments

The World Series of Poker really hit it out of the park when they introduced the tournament format in 1971. The year prior, at the inaugural event in Las Vegas, it was just seven players (including “Amarillo Slim” Preston and Doyle Brunson) playing a cash game session. Switching to tournaments was a masterstroke. With big prizes available to the winners, the WSOP now draws thousands of players from around the world, all hoping to take home one of those shiny gold bracelets along with some serious cash.

Online poker has also been transformed by the tournament scene. This is the most popular way to play the game, and the driving force behind the “Moneymaker Era” boom of the mid-2000s. Online poker tournaments are running around the clock right here at Bovada Poker – you might even be playing in one right now. If not, here’s how to get a piece of the action.

How Bovada Online Poker Works

The great game of poker has been around for centuries. Online poker is a bit younger, dating back to the early days of the internet in the mid-1990s. The game is the same, though, using the same deck of 52 playing cards, dealt at random. People log in to their Bovada Poker accounts and take their seats at the virtual felt, trying to do the best with the cards they’re given; each player has a stack of virtual chips to bet with, and they take turns, going clockwise around the table.

There are many different variants of poker you can play, but the most popular at the moment is a game called No-Limit Texas Hold’em. This is the game they play at the WSOP Main Event – and in the 2006 James Bond movie Casino Royale, replacing baccarat in the original Ian Fleming novel. Before each hand, two designated players at the table put in small mandatory bets known as the “blinds.” Then each player gets dealt two “hole” cards, face down, and a round of betting begins.

The first player in the hand has three options: Raise, Call, or Fold. Then the next player clockwise gets their turn, and so on around the table. If everyone folds to the last player, then that player gets to take the blinds and the next hand is dealt. Otherwise, the hand proceeds to the next betting round, known as the “flop.” This is where the Dealer puts out three community cards, face-up in the middle of the table, that everyone gets to use to make their 5-card hand.

After the flop is dealt, betting resumes as before. If a winner isn’t declared at the end of this round, another community card (the “turn”) is dealt, and the betting starts again. Finally, if needed, the “river” card is dealt, and the final betting round begins. If at least two people remain in the pot at the end of this round, they turn their hole cards over, and whoever has the best hand wins – or they share the pot equally if it’s a tie.

This “showdown” scenario can also happen earlier in the hand if a player goes all-in, meaning they put all their remaining chips in the pot. When that bet gets called, and there aren’t any other players still battling it out, then the hole cards are flipped over and the remaining community cards are dealt to see who wins. To find out more about No-Limit Hold’em, as well as the Omaha and Omaha Hi/Lo variants, make sure to visit our archive of helpful articles here at Bovada Poker.

How to Join Bovada Poker Tournaments

  1. If you haven’t already, sign up for your free Bovada Poker account (players must be at least 18 years of age, and located within our jurisdiction), then download our industry-leading poker client onto your desktop – or simply log in to our homepage using your mobile device. Either way, you’ll see our Bovada Poker lobby, which includes a schedule for all the upcoming poker tournaments. This schedule can be “filtered” so you only see tournaments for a certain game, like Hold’em, or tournaments at a certain stake level.Speaking of stakes, every tournament you enter at Bovada Poker (except for freerolls) includes a specific buy-in and entry fee that you pay before taking your seat. The buy-ins are put together in the prize pool for everyone to battle over. Freerolls are exactly that: free to play. Try some freerolls and/or Play Money games when you first sign up, so you can get used to the lobby layout and the software before you play online poker tournaments for Real Money.

Online Poker Tournaments Available 24/7

Bovada is pleased to bring you some of the best poker tournaments online, and unlike the bricks-and-mortar casinos, there’s always a tournament waiting for you to play. This makes it a lot easier for you to fit poker into your schedule. Depending on what kind of game you play (which we’ll get into shortly), and how well you do, it could take minutes or even several hours before you reach the finish line. Choose the right games to fit your needs, and if you accidentally sign up for something you didn’t mean to, you can unregister without penalty anytime before the tournament begins.

Types of Online Poker Tournaments

With hundreds of tournaments happening every day, there’s something for everyone at Bovada Poker. Texas Hold’em, Omaha and Omaha Hi/Lo are all on the menu; the vast majority of tournaments are Hold’em, but fans of the other two variants won’t be disappointed. You can also choose which betting limit (No-Limit, Pot-Limit or Fixed-Limit) you prefer – with No-Limit being the most popular way to play Hold’em tournaments.

The standard “freeze-out” format is used for most tournaments at Bovada. This means that you enter once, and play poker until you either run out of chips or win the whole thing. The prize pool is split among the top survivors, with the biggest prize going to first place. Other tournaments allow you to re-enter when you’re eliminated, or re-buy if you’re running low on chips. There are also satellite tournaments where you can qualify for a seat at an event with a higher buy-in. This gives you the opportunity to play in a big tournament – say, the Main Event at the annual Golden Spade Poker Open – that might otherwise be beyond the budget.

Here’s a closer look at some of the other tournament types you’ll find at Bovada Poker:

Jackpot Sit & Go’s

A standard Sit & Go is a smaller tournament with a specific number of entries (as small as two players) that begins once enough players have signed up. The Jackpot Sit & Go, which is a three-player tournament, adds another layer of excitement by awarding a random cash prize to the winner. That prize will be determined before you begin – you could win up to $60,000 in a matter of minutes.

Turbo Tournaments

Every poker tournament runs at a certain speed, which is measured by how long it takes between blind levels; the more quickly the blinds increase, the sooner the tournament will end. If you’re looking for a shorter poker session, try one of the many Turbo events on the menu. Super Turbos are even faster, and Hyper Turbos (including the Jackpot Sit & Go’s) are the fastest of them all.

Weekly Guarantees

Some of the most popular online poker tournaments are played once every week, usually on Sundays when people have more free time on their hands. Bovada Poker is pleased to offer the $100K Guaranteed, the best of all the Sunday majors in the business; there’s a guaranteed prize pool of $100,000 up for grabs no matter how many players sign up. The $100K Guaranteed kicks off at 4 PM ET – followed by the $75K Guaranteed High Roller tourney at 6 PM.

Monthly Milly

As if those big weekly guarantees weren’t enough, Bovada Poker features the incredible Monthly Milly, with a guaranteed prize pool of $1 million on the line. The Monthly Milly also runs on select Sundays, and like the other tournaments we’ve mentioned here, No-Limit Hold’em is the name of the game. The buy-ins get larger for these prestigious events, up to $535 for the Monthly Milly, but again, you can satellite your way into this tournament for as little as $1.10.

In addition to the tournaments on this list, Bovada offers special Knockout tourneys, where you earn a bounty prize for every player you eliminate – and those bounties get progressively bigger when you play a Super Knockout event. Also, don’t forget about our amazing annual poker festivals, including the aforementioned Golden Spade Poker Open (GSPO) and the Black Diamond Poker Open (BDPO). You can find out more by consulting our FAQ and Help guides; in the meantime, we look forward to seeing you on the felt right here at Bovada Poker.