How to Play Texas Hold’em | Texas Hold’em Rules

Posted by James Guill . Last updated:

Learning how to play Texas Hold’em poker online? Texas Hold’em rules make it easily the most popular poker variation on the internet. Typically, poker players will gain most of their experience, and the education and bumps in the road that entails, through playing Hold’em poker.

Texas Hold’em rules are straightforward but not necessarily easy to grasp if you have never played poker or a community cards game before. Once you’ve grasped the rules, you’ll be ready to go find the best online poker sites and try your hand at fast-paced Texas Hold’em action online!

Best Sites for Online Texas Hold'em Poker

Once you’ve got the rules for online Texas Hold’em poker down, try your hand at one of the best online poker rooms!

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How to Play Texas Hold'em Poker

Want to learn about the gameplay and Texas Hold’em rules? This section will be a brief introduction to how the game advances. Every hand will be different but the same steps will occur each time!

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Posting Blinds

At every Texas Hold’em table, the dealer rotates clockwise from hand to hand. For any given hand, the two players directly to the left of the dealer are forced to make a minimal bet, known as blinds (because you are betting without seeing your cards).

The player to the dealer’s immediate left is the small blind, which is an amount that is half of the big blind, posted by the person sitting to the small blind’s left. Who posts the blind rotates each hand, but when you are the small or big blind, the hand’s strategy changes.

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Pre-Flop

Once the blinds are posted, the dealer will give every player two cards, face down. These are known as your “hole” cards and will be the only ones that differentiate your hand from any other opponents.

After hole cards are dealt, the first round of betting commences. To stay in the hand, a player must at least match the amount of the big blind already on the table. They can also choose to raise the starting amount, requiring any challenger at least match the amount of the raise.

Non-blinds can fold at this stage without committing any bets to the pot.

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The Flop

Once the first round of betting is complete, the dealer with place three cards in the middle of the table, face up. These three cards are called “the flop” and are community cards. Therefore, these any of these three cards can be combined with one or both of a players hole cards to make the best poker hand possible.

After the flop, there is another round of betting. Each player can fold without risking any more chips, can check the current pot and stay in the hand so long as no other player bets, or can raise the pot. Once someone has bet, to see another card, each player must at least match that amount of chips.

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The Turn

After the flop and subsequent betting round, if more than one player is still in the hand, the dealer will show another card, face-up, in the center of the table. This card is known as “The Turn” or “Fourth Street.” It is also a community card that can help any remaining players hand.

Another round of betting begins, where players can fold, check, or bet, based on table position and the action before them.

three playing cards, one face up and two face down

The River

Finally, the dealer will place a fifth community card in the middle, face up. This is “The River.” Each remaining player at the table now compiles the best five-card poker hand they can from their two hole card and the five community cards.

After the river card, there is a final round of betting. If more than one player calls the last bet, those players will reveal their cards and determine who has the strongest hand and therefore wins all the chips in the pot.

Hand Rankings in Texas Hold'em Poker

Texas Hold’em poker rules uses the same hand ranking as standard poker, with no wild cards. However, aces can be high or low, and start a straight running A-2-3-4-5. The following chart indicates the ranking of five-card poker hands, starting with the strongest:

Texas Hold’em Online Hand Name Cards Example Hand
Royal Flush A, K, Q, J, 10 – same suit royal flush
Straight Flush Five sequential cards – same suit straight flush
Four of a Kind Four cards of the same value, one of each suit – fifth card doesn’t matter four of a kind
Full House Three cards of the same value, and a pair of an additional value full house
Flush Five cards of the same suit – any order flush
Straight Five sequential cards – any suit straight
Three of a Kind Three cards of the same value – other two cards don’t matter cards-three-of-kind
Two Pair Two cards of the same value and two cards of a different value – fifth card doesn’t matter cards-two-pair
One Pair Two cards of the same value – other three cards don’t matter cards-one-pair
No Pair All five cards of different values and not all the same suit

Online Texas Hold'em Poker Games

Texas Hold’em poker is the most popular type of poker game available on the internet. But there are various ways the best online card rooms set up their Texas Hold’em games, each with slightly different gameplay and strategy.

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