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Blinds and Antes: What Are They?

There are a lot of terms that you really have to remember when you're going to play online poker, and two of these are blinds and antes. Every time you're going to play the game you will be asked for them. Understanding what they mean and how they work will help you become a better online poker player.

What are blinds?

When you're going to play an online poker, there should be a starting bet to be made. This is just to start the entire game and get everyone into their online poker mode. There are actually two kinds of blinds. We have the small blind and the big blind. The online poker player who is seated at the left of the dealer will make the small blind, while the one that is seated next to him will give out the big blind. This will then be twice the amount of the small blind and equal to the minimum bet limit of the online poker. The person who made the big blind will be the first one to make an action during the betting round. Both blinds will form part of the total pot during the first betting round.

On the other hand, even if the big blind is equal to the minimum bet, it may eventually change depending on the kind of limit the online poker game has. For example, if it's going to be a no-limit game, and the minimum bet is $5 and the highest is $10, the small and big blind will be $5 and $10 respectively.

What are antes?

Ante refers to the fixed amount that every player should place into the pot before the cards will be played. These are primarily used in home games, as well as in online poker games such as draw or five-card stud.

What are the differences between blinds and antes?

There are a couple of differences between the two. For example, blinds are usually used in Texas Holdem and Omaha online poker games, while antes are more found in home games. They also vary on how the bet is being determined. As mentioned, small and big blinds will be dependent on the online poker limit. Antes are more fixed. Moreover, blinds will count as part of the total money at stake, while antes don't.

Nevertheless, both can be used in online poker tournaments. Most of the online poker tournaments combine blinds and antes, and they can go up, or they can remain the same for a period of time. This scenario is often termed as escalation and level. If there are antes, the blinds will not double as the player will go into another level. However, if there isn't, the blinds, both big and small, will increase to twofold. Simply put, if there is a blind, the amount will increase; if there is ante introduced, there will be no increase to the blinds. Since the increase of blinds and the introduction of ante are based on a particular period of time, it is always important that players can keep track of when they are going to happen.