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How to Host a Poker Night

If you've never hosted your own home game or poker party, you might have taken some of the responsibilities involved for granted. Fortunately, getting started isn't too difficult.

Some of the necessities are obvious: a home poker table, poker chips, playing cards, and seating for everyone. If you want to establish a loyal group of regulars in your game, you'll need to make sure they stay entertained and don't go hungry.


Above all else, you'll need some quality poker chips, a sturdy poker table, and some brand of plastic playing cards. It's also important to make sure you have enough chips for the number of people you're expecting.

You should also account for any realistic amount of re-buys they could make, whether it's a cash game or a home poker tournament.

how to host a poker night

Poker tables vary widely in quality and price – you can spend anywhere from under $100 to several thousand dollars.

Consider the stakes of the game you're hosting before you go out and purchase a new table. If possible, try to get one with drink holders to avoid spills.

Playing cards are pretty self-explanatory. There's plenty of reputable brands like Kem, Copag, etc. Just make sure they're plastic so they'll be more resistant to wear and tear.

Food and Drink

Having a variety of poker snacks on hand is a great way to keep your guests happy and coming back for more. Bad beats don't sting quite as much when they come with fresh sliders and an ice cold beer.

There are an enormous variety of options to choose from when it comes to poker night appetizers.

Poker night food

There's old standbys like pretzels, peanuts, or chips and salsa - all worthy options. But if you want to impress people, you can kick it up a notch by preparing legitimate, restaurant-quality food.

Not sure where to start with game night food? Check out our 5 Essential Poker Snacks and take a look at some of our suggestions.

Other Entertainment

People have short attention spans, and poker nights can sometimes be very long. No matter how clever your table banter is, you need something to take the edge off. Something to break up the monotony of chip-clanging and drink-guzzling.

Thankfully, this is why we have television. Yes, poker at home should be a social game. But occasionally, it's nice to just tune out of the conversation and check out what's on TV.

poker night equipment

It's also worth noting that – in a room of gamblers – there's a decent chance someone has a bet riding on a game somewhere. You can do you part to enable your friends' degenerate habits by fitting a nice big flats creen someplace in the poker room. The sports bettors will thank you.

If you have a pool table, a dartboard, or a pinball machine, they all make for great side entertainment as well. It's also a good idea to have a designated smoking area somewhere outside.

Make that area known to your guests, and you can avoid having your place smell like an ashtray.

Play poker at home legally in the US at Americas Cardroom.