When To Fold in Poker

Two cards face down on a poker table with some chips.

Some of the world’s most experienced poker players will probably tell you that part of a winning poker tournament strategy is knowing when to fold. While novice players might argue that knowing when to fold in poker is something that not everybody can discern, that is not entirely true. As with most things in life, some things become easier with time and practice. 

Irrespective of whether you are playing online poker or in person, it requires a certain level of tact and strategic decision-making. Simply put, if you feel that calling or raising will probably be unfavorable in the long run, that may just be the most opportune time to fold. The key here is being able to read the room and carefully decide whether or not the odds are in your favor. 

With poker being a game of skill and strategy, coupled with luck to an extent, there is no universal answer to when to fold. However, there are certain indicators to look out for when you are playing real poker online to improve your chances of emerging triumphant. Let’s explore these a bit further below. 

Common scenarios to look out for to know when to fold

Being observant and understanding your cards may put you in good standing when looking for indicators of when to fold. Generally speaking, though, it can be difficult to truly know when to fold, but there are a few scenarios that you should keep an eye out for. 

If the odds are against you

You don’t necessarily have to be a math or statistics guru – although it would come in handy – but you should be able to read the room and decide if the odds are against you. Based on the cards you’ve been dealt and your opponents, chances are you’ll be able to draw a conclusion on whether or not to fold. Probability is a very important aspect in deciding when to fold. 

If your opponent’s strategy suggests so

A man sitting at a poker table looking at two aces in his hand.

Taking the time to analyze your opponents and their actions will prove to be worthwhile, as they can be indicative of their own chances of winning. However, being able to call a bluff or maintain a poker face in a live game is of utmost importance here. For example, you can assume that an opponent has really great cards if they are super tight and barely play any hands. Additionally, if they suddenly make a huge raise, then your chances of winning over them may be pretty slim if your own cards are not too promising. 

If you are priced out of your draw

In some cases, you may find yourself being overly optimistic about the implied odds. This could lead to you possibly dealing cards that may actually give your opponent a better hand. Your position can also reduce your odds. 

If your opponent has tells

Of course, this may be an unreliable way of playing, but your opponents’ tells can be indicative of when to fold. Believe it or not, this is also applicable to online poker tournaments too, not just live poker. This is also true in the case of video poker online, which is only slightly different from the traditional poker game. Their actions can give you a good idea of your opponent’s standing, and if they indicate strength, you should probably fold. 

Live poker tells that suggest you should consider folding, include things such as your opponent trying extremely hard to act weak or indecisive. Additionally, if your opponent is intentionally trying to act relaxed, they are probably in a pretty good position. 

How to fold

A player looks at a 4 of hearts and 2 of clubs in his hand with poker chips in the background

If you’re a relatively new player who’s still learning how to play poker, knowing when and how to fold are great starting points. The truth is, only you know the cards you’ve been dealt, and you need to weigh up your options between folding, calling or raising. Now, it’s important to note that even if you feel that you immediately want to fold, that is considered bad poker etiquette. 

If you are playing poker the traditional way, it is recommended that you wait until it is your turn to play to do so. If you are playing poker online, though, it’s a different story. At live poker tournaments or games, the right way to fold is to place your cards face down and slide them forward to the dealer’s reach. You must also state your intentions. 

Experience online poker at Borgata Online

It’s quite clear that poker is an all-time favorite casino game that has truly stood the test of time. Nowadays, it is not uncommon for players to explore the best of both worlds and enjoy live and online poker. If you’re ready to try out some of these tips, you can immerse yourself in the thrill of an online casino when you sign up at Borgata Online.