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Qualifying for the World Poker Tour

Overview and History

Founded in 2002, the World Poker Tour is a series of live Texas Hold’em poker tournaments and features many of the world’s top professional players. Tournaments are held internationally, although most are held in the U.S. The WPT is currently in its 9th season, which consists of 18 events held around the world. The season finale is the WPT World Championship, which will be held at the Bellagio Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada starting May 20, 2011. For a huge percentage of the participant, qualifying online for the World Poker Tour was a cheaper way to play at this event.
The WPT revolutionized the game of poker, bringing it to millions of people’s living rooms with televised events. The first televised show of its kind, it created enormous worldwide interest in the game of Texas Hold’em. Innovations included the “hole cam” – a camera showing players hole cards – which included viewers in on the suspense and action of the game, and allowed some insight into how professional poker players strategized and played their games. Analysis by commentators also gave viewers the opportunity to learn more about poker besides the basic rules of how to play, including different terms and strategies.

PartyPoker and the World Poker Tour WPT

In 2009, the WPT was acquired by PartyGaming, the parent company of Party Poker. Party Poker offers more World Poker Tour qualifying tournaments than any other site and is the best source of qualifying tournaments for the WPT. Party Poker was founded in 2001 and is one of the largest online poker rooms with traffic averaging around 10,000 real-money players at peak gaming hours. Party Poker’s numbers dipped after the site decided to exclude U.S. players, but promotional efforts have lead to a rebound in player traffic. The site is unique among online poker rooms, with advertising efforts promoting a more laid-back, festive, party atmosphere as opposed to a hard-core, cutthroat competitive setting. PartyPoker is also well known to players for having fairly soft competition, another reason for the site’s popularity.

Getting Started qualifying for the World Poker Tour

If you’re feeling inspired and would like to try your hand at qualifying for the WPT, there are basically two ways to do it: winning qualifying tournaments at online poker rooms or casinos, or if you have the cash, by direct buy-in (which could cost anywhere between $2,500 and $25,000 depending on the event). However, remember that the majority of players in the WPT qualified by playing (and winning) in one of many satellite tournaments. If you’re trying to decide which poker room to choose, Party Poker would be the logical choice.
Party Poker makes it easy to get started. First, go to their website to download and install their software via this link. In order to take advantage of their bonus of $500 (100% match bonus on your first deposit), enter Party Poker Bonus Code COACH500. If you don’t want to download and install software and don’t mind some limited features, you can even take advantage of their “Instant Play” feature and play from your internet browser. Whichever option you choose, you’ll create your account, then check out the tournament schedule. Register for any tournament that says “WPT Sub Qualifier" and you’ll be on your way to the WPT.