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Satelite Tournaments


The entry fee for a major tournament can be rather costly, like the World Series of Poker’s $10,000 registration fee (buy-in and entry fee). You can enter that tournament by paying the $10,000 yourself or by winning the money through a satellite tournament. For example, if the registration fee to enter a tournament is $10,000, a satellite tournament would get ten players together and have them pay a $1,000 buy-in each. This adds up to $10,000 for prize money the same price as the bigger tournament’s registration fee and the winner gets all of that money so they can pay for the tournament. Nothing is given to the second or third place players.

If you don’t have $1,000 to spend on the buy-in for the satellite, you can play in a super satellite which has a much smaller buy-in and the prize is the money for the registration fee of the satellite. Here’s an example to explain how this works:

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The big tournament that you want to enter has a $10,000 registration fee, which isn’t in your poker budget. There’s a satellite tournament whose prize is $10,000 to pay for that registration fee. The registration fee for the satellite tournament is $1,100 ($1,000 is the buy-in that goes to the pot for the winner and $100 is the entry fee that goes to the casino). But even $1,100 is too expensive for your budget. So you enter a super satellite with an $11 registration fee ($10 is the buy-in and $1 is the entry fee) with a top prize of $1,100 so you can pay for the satellite tournament.

The winners of the 2003 and 2004 World Series of Poker both won their $10,000 registration fee through online satellites. Chris Moneymaker, the winner in 2003, spent $39 for his online satellite’s registration fee and won $2,500,000!

Some online poker sites have special satellite tournaments whose top prize includes the registration fee for a major tournament plus travel and hotel expenses and additional spending money! Poker Stars has many qualifying satellite tournaments for the WSOP offering all of the above. One of their satellite tournament’s top prize has accommodations for sixty nights! It’s one of the most generous online poker prizes you can find.

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