Poker Etiquette in Home Games

Basic etiquette plays a vital role in society, and it even applies to Poker. Players who are rude and inconsiderate may soon find themselves excluded from games or the object of silent derision. We’re not saying you need to stick a doily under your beer or soda bottle, but keep the following do’s and don’ts in mind.

Do …

When playing at home, make sure you do the following:

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.

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 …

When playing Poker at home, make sure you avoid these goofs:

Give a player advice in the middle of a hand even if he asks for it:

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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