Poker is an incredibly fun game to play whether you’re playing online with crypto, in person in a casino, or just organizing a casual match with a bunch of friends or neighbors. Either way, it’s online bitcoin poker is a very enjoyable experience, but the games can last quite a while sometimes so it leads you to think just how long professional poker matches last if amateur ones aren’t that short either. Today we’ll be answering that question as frankly, we wondered about it too. The answers may surprise you and we hope that you’ll find this read interesting.

Casual vs. competitive poker

Before we get into the specifics of how long pro poker games last, let's take a look at the key differences between the two so that we can perhaps better understand why exactly the difference is there in the first place. Of course, the biggest difference between the two is the skill level of the players, but it’s a bit more nuanced than that as that skill difference brings with it many more things.

Since the skill level is so high players can sometimes take a while to make their decision based on many factors. Given that there is no time limit this can stack up and is certainly part of the reason for the time difference. Another thing is that, unlike cash games which many play in casinos they actually have an end. If you’re used to playing cash games then the concept of a poker game ending may be foreign to you due to being able to enter and leave whenever in those.

So how long do they take?

Different tournaments have different rules but tournaments that last a single day usually take anywhere between 5 and 10 hours to complete. Of course, turbo rulesets exist and those are usually less than 6 hours, or if the tournament perhaps has some longer structure or ruleset then you can expect it to last a bit longer. The numbers vary so much as each game can end quite quickly or drag on for a while so there is a lot of variance in the total tournament time at the end of the day.

Of course, that’s for one-day tournaments but bigger competitions last longer. The World Series of Poker can last up to a whopping five days, of course, the exact length is generally announced well ahead of time so that players can prepare and plan their schedules around it. It would be very sad to need to leave a tournament due to personal obligations as it lasted longer than expected.

Not only do these tournaments sometimes take the entire workweek to complete, but that isn’t even the longest poker event that exists if you can believe it. If you want that then look no further than the main event of the aforementioned World Series of Poker as that takes an insane nine days. The rewards are of course very good, but it is definitely an endurance run at that point. It takes a decent bit of fortitude to be able to go through all of it and get that elusive first-place finish.

Variance and how it is dealt with

You may have thought while reading this “well how do organizers deal with the fact that games can be either very fast or very slow?” and we thought the same. Thankfully the people organizing these events are very smart and have come up with systems that make sure that while there is no time limit, games are still somewhat certain to end before a certain point. It’s a very well-thought-out system and other games may be able to take inspiration from it.

Of course, they can gauge the length somewhat from the number of players that are participating. After that, they can affect it by choosing the size of the starting deck. Then they manipulate the starting blind sizes and how much they increase over time. This makes it so that the starting blinds will eventually be so large that the players won’t have enough chips for many of them, making the game eventually reach a conclusion before the heat death of the universe.