How much do you tip the dealer? I know some players tip a percentage of the pot. On average pots, just tip around the small blind amount.

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Have you ever seen a dealer cheat so a big tipper would win?

  • 2
    Can you trim it to one of the two questions?
    – paparazzo
    Dec 20, 2016 at 16:58
  • 3
    You are asking two very different questions, with very little direct relevance to each other. Pick one and separate the other.
    – Nij
    Dec 21, 2016 at 7:12

3 Answers 3


As a former dealer, you can tip whatever you want to tip. Let me give you some guidelines for lower stakes games, that myself as a dealer would expect (i.e. $1-$2 up to $2-$5):

  • If the pot is won pre-flop without any major betting, tip $0.
  • If the pot is a small pot, i.e. $25-$50, tip $1.
  • If the pot is on the larger side, i.e. $50-$150, tip $1-$2.
  • If the pot is huge, like 2+ buy-ins, tip at least $2.
  • If it was a complicated pot, i.e. many side pots, tip something.
  • If the dealer is leaving and you like them, i.e. friendly, good dealer, etc, tip them $1.

Dealers aren't really expecting you to tip them big - even in high stakes games (dealers mostly get a $5 tip whatever the hand, even in high stakes games i.e. $500-$1000, $1k-$2k), but they are expecting to be tipped.

Another factor that might influence your decision is the region of the world you're playing in. Most of your dealer's hourly rate in America is taxed so tips can make-up the bulk of their earnings. Whereas in Europe (depending on the country), their hourly isn't destroyed by tax and so they don't necessarily need those tips to merely survive.

Really you need to ask yourself what the money means to you to know how much to tip. From my experience dealing everything from $1-$2 to $1k-$2k, $1-$2 players are the best tippers. This is because they're playing for fun, not a living. If you're playing for fun and want to splash some more tips to the dealer go for it, but if you're playing with $100, and that money means something to you, don't start throwing $5 tips around.

tl;dr version:

In short there is no 100% standard guideline, tip an amount you're comfortable tipping.

  • 1
    If the pot is won pre-flop due to an all-in open raise that folded everyone out, tip the big blind. HAHAHAHAHAHA j/k ;)
    – user1934
    Dec 20, 2016 at 17:41

I like @Grinch91's answer for its level of detail and rationale. The tip amounts also pretty much agree with what I've seen and with the amounts I tend to tip myself.

On the second half of your question; I've never seen nor heard of dealers fixing a hand so that a bigger tipper would win the pot. First of all, doing so would probably be more trouble than it was worth, given:

  1. the difficulty of rigging games in general
  2. the legal/professional risks of getting caught
  3. the typically small upside (in my experience, it's pretty rare for one player at a table to tip significantly more than all the other players)

Secondly, if a dealer really did have a reliable way of rigging a poker game to benefit a specific player at the table - and was willing to take the risk of doing so - I imagine it would be much more profitable to collude with that player ahead of time (e.g. "I'll deal you good hands if you pay me half your winnings afterwards") rather than rely on more generous tipping to earn some extra money.

  • @Paparazzi, can you elaborate on how I could have better advanced the site with my answer? I'm very new to StackExchange (just signed up today, in fact), so would appreciate any input on how to be a better contributor.
    – StevenL
    Dec 22, 2016 at 0:16
  • I think it is a great answer. +1
    – paparazzo
    Dec 24, 2016 at 17:34

The dealer is working for you, tip what you think that is worth. It is not charity, it is how they make a living and part of your overhead. If they are a bad dealer, don't tip them.

On your second question, have you ever seen a dealer cheat so a better tipper wins, the answer is maybe, but what they don't do because you are a stiff can cost you. If your a regular at a Denny's and never tip are you getting that refill on your coffee without asking? If your not tipping the dealer your not getting the best service, and that service is handling hundreds to thousands of your dollars and applying customer service to you and your competition. Lots of things may not go your way or as expected.

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