This is the definition of action only from Pokernews.com:

In many card rooms, with respect to an all-in bet, only a full bet is considered a legitimate wager, in terms of whether this constitutes a raise that can be re-raised. Anything less than a full bet is considered to be action only, that is, other players can call such a bet but not raise it. For example, Chloe bets $10. Henry calls. John goes all in for $14. When the bet gets back to Chloe, she is permitted only to call the extra $4; the same goes for John.

What I'm confused about is why it's called action only? Because according to the glossaries I've looked up, action means the betting within a poker hand and if I'm correct, this consists of a bet, a call, and a raise; but if I'm incorrect and that action is only limited to a bet, this still does not make sense to me considering the example given indicates that one is only permitted to call, so why call action only, why not call only? Am I missing something?

1 Answer 1


The best explanation I found was:

Action Only - An all-in wager which is not large enough to re-open the betting for someone who has already acted is referred to as action only (as opposed to a bet, which could be raised by someone who has already acted).

It's a little confusing. "Your Action" clearly states it's your turn to do something (bet, fold, raise, etc.). In this situation, your actions have been locked by the all-in. The All-in wasn't a raise, as the amount wasn't a legal raise, so instead we say it's "action only" and your choice is limited.

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