Poker Etiquette at Home

Part of the Poker For Dummies Cheat Sheet

When you're playing poker in your home or someone else's, the rules of etiquette are mostly commonsense conventions and normal poker protocols. Following are a list of things to do and things to avoid doing during a friendly game at home:

Do . . .

  • Be honest: Don't try to short-change the pot or otherwise cheat.

  • Play quickly: No one likes a slow player.

  • Be courteous and friendly: No one likes a whiner or a gloater.

  • Be a good winner: Gloating and making fun of other players is a definite no-no.

  • Be a good loser: We all lose. It happens. But show some class and don't show your temper, swear, or throw cards. Definitely don't insult the other players.

  • Let the other players know if you plan to leave early: It's courteous to let the other players know in advance if you plan to quit early.

  • Bet in sequence: Bet, call, or fold when it's your turn. Acting out of turn can adversely affect another player's hand.

Don't . . .

  • Give a player advice in the middle of a hand even if asked: This is a no-win proposition. Either the player who asked will be upset at you if the advice is wrong or the person who loses against the player will be mad at you.

  • Look at another player's hand, unless you have permission: Some players strongly object to your looking at their hand.

  • Play poker with a guy named "Doyle," "Amarillo Slim," or "Harpo": These guys are too good for your normal home game.

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