There are many benefits of playing in an online poker tournament. Not only will you be able to play against thousands of other players, but you can also participate in a huge prize pool. Many online poker tournaments have massive guaranteed prize pools, and they can have hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash prizes. There are also many tournaments that are open to the public, such as the World Series of Poker.
An online poker tournament will generally have several tables where players play simultaneously. It usually begins at a set time, and players begin with the same number of chips. The players compete until one player is eliminated. The top finishers are then paid in descending order of their buy-in. Usually, the online poker tournaments have multi-day multi-million dollar series.
One disadvantage of playing online poker tournaments is that you can’t see the other players. You can only see how many chips you have in your hand and the screen name of the person you are playing against. In person, you can see their face and their movement and watch for tells. This forces you to pay close attention and learn their patterns.
Another advantage of playing in an online poker tournament is that you can play with your friends. Many sites host free tournaments. You can even join a league to compete against other players. This can be a great way to get bonus chips from the leaderboards. Aside from the free tournaments, these online poker tournaments are safe and legal in the US.
An international online poker tournament recently broke a record for entry and generated $18 million in prize money. PokerStars said the prize pool was the largest in the company’s history. The Sunday Million tournament, which featured a $215 buy-in, attracted almost 61,000 players, breaking the previous record of the same tournament in 2011.
Aside from the prize pool, the free online poker tournaments are a good way to build up your bankroll. These tournaments are free to enter, and the online poker site pays out the entire prize pool. They also have a small field size, which makes them a great way to start playing poker. You also have the opportunity to accumulate Sweeps Cash, which can be cashed out if you win.
You can also participate in satellite tournaments, which are tournaments where the prize is a buy-in to a larger tournament. For example, Chris Moneymaker won a $10,000 seat in the 2003 WSOP Main Event by winning a $40 satellite. Some satellites even offer an all-expenses-paid vacation.