The World Series of Poker is back. Series officials released the official schedule on Tuesday and the festival becomes the biggest in the event’s history.
Players looking to make the trip to Las Vegas will find 88 gold bracelet events running Sept. 30 to Nov. 23 at the Rio. Organizers announced earlier this year that the series would move to the fall this year after running mostly online in 2020.
For international players, the WSOP also announced GGPoker as the exclusive partner offering online satellites outside the US. With just a bit over three months until action gets underway, many rounders will be ready to get back to the tables.
“We could not be more excited to welcome everyone back to Las Vegas and the Rio,” WSOP Vice President and tournament director Jack Effel said in a news release. “The entire WSOP team is hard at work to ensure players have the absolute best experience possible.”
What can players expect at this year’s WSOP?
The WSOP returns after live poker was basically non-existent for much of 2020. With vaccinations curtailing COVID-19 cases across the US, many major tournaments have returned.
That now includes the biggest spectacle in poker after a 26-month absence. A full slate of tournaments is on tap this fall.
“Make no mistake, the 2021 WSOP will be the real deal and we’re preparing for a full house,” WSOP’s executive director Ty Stewart said.
“Throughout the storied history of the WSOP, this year will be particularly memorable and we’re preparing for a poker reunion all players can celebrate. We’re beyond thrilled to offer a complete schedule of can’t-miss events including all our flagships and the variety players deserve.”
Favorite events back at the Rio
Those looking to get in the action will find plenty of old favorites. That includes several of the series’ signature events attracting huge fields and major prize pools.
Events like the Millionaire Maker, Monster Stack, Double Stack, Colossus, and The Closer will run Oct. 8 to Nov. 19. Those events will usher in the weekends throughout the series.
One of these tournaments will kick off each Friday and Saturday. Other popular events on the schedule include:
- $25,000 Heads Up Championship (Oct. 5) – The buy-in is now $25,000 and capped at 64 players. Big names should be out in force for this one.
- $1,000 Seniors Championship (Oct. 27 – 28) – This has become a highly anticipated event and is now a two-day event beginning this year. Players get one optional re-entry per flight.
- Freezeouts (Oct. 6, 13, 18, 21, and 24) – Those who don’t like unlimited re-entries, or re-entries at all, are in luck. Players will find plenty of freezeout action starting on Oct. 6. That includes popular buy-in levels ranging from $500 to $5,000.
- 2-7 No Limit Single Draw – Lowball fans will once again find this game in the mix. This format has been added to the Poker Players’ Championship (PPC), now featuring nine games. A $2,500 version of the PPC also runs Oct. 28 with some 2-7 Single Draw action.
Organizers add some new events events
WSOP organizers freshen up the schedule every year with some new events and that includes 2021. With players getting back to the action, the WSOP launches “The Reunion” on Oct. 1. The $500 tournament features a $5 million guarantee.
Players can choose from three starting flights on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Some other new events include:
- $1,979 Poker Hall of Fame Bounty (Nov. 17) – This event honors members of the Poker Hall of Fame, which was founded in 1979. Members earn a free buy-in and have a bounty on their heads corresponding to the year they were inducted.
- $1,000 Flip and Go presented by GGPoker (Oct. 10) – Everyone’s all in on the first hand in this popular online format. Players receive three cards and choose two. One player wins the table, automatically moving into the money. The tournament then reverts to a traditional structure.
- $50,000 Pot Limit Omaha (Nov. 19) – This is now the highest PLO buy-in ever at the WSOP. The tournament highlights a high roller series scheduled after the Main Event. Players will find major stakes including $50,000, $100,000 and $250,000 No Limit Hold’em events.
Non-bracelet Daily Deepstacks back at the Rio
Beyond the traditional bracelet events, the WSOP also runs daily events at bargain prices. Daily Deepstacks tournaments feature big fields and nice payouts for winners.
Tournaments run in the Pavilion and kick off on Sept. 30. Here’s a look at what to expect:
- 1 pm – $250 NLHE
- 4 pm – $200 NLHE
- 7 pm – $400 NLHE Turbo
- 10 pm – $150 NLHE
- Mondays, 5 pm – $250 HORSE (starting Oct. 4)
- Wednesdays, 9 am – $250 NLHE Seniors (starting Oct. 6)
Players heading to Las Vegas can also play legal online poker at WSOP.com. That includes satellites for bracelet events.
Qualifiers are already underway on WSOP.com for players in Nevada and New Jersey. These run throughout the series and WSOP.com awarded over 1,000 seats in 2019.
International players can also qualify for WSOP events via GGPoker.
More bracelets also up for grabs this summer
The WSOP may be in the fall, but rounders can also score a bracelet this summer. The WSOP Online runs July 1 to Aug. 1 with 33 bracelets on the line at WSOP.com.
The bracelet action then shifts to GGPoker for international players. Another 33 bracelet events are planned for players outside the US from Aug. 1 to Sept. 12. An official schedule hasn’t been released yet however.
What to know before heading to the 2021 WSOP
Along with a complete schedule, WSOP organizers have detailed things to remember before heading to Las Vegas. Here are some key reminders when booking that trip to Sin City.
All international players are required to bring an additional form of identification. The ID must show a residential address, such as a signed lease agreement, utility bill, or a mobile phone bill.
Players from outside the US must also have a valid passport. Foreign players from non-tax treaty countries are also subject to up to 30 percent tax withholding.
To avoid lines and congestion, players are asked to utilize the online or mobile registration to pay and sign up for events. WSOP uses the Bravo Poker Live app for this process.
Players who register online will need to visit the Belize Ballroom and have their identification validated. Once verified, players can simply pick events online via the app or use the self-service kiosks located throughout the Convention Center. Registration opens in August.
The main registration area remains in the Tropical Ballroom, near the back end of the Rio Convention Center. More stations have been added to the main registration cage and the VIP cage.
The registration area opens Sept. 30 and remains open 24 hours a day through Nov. 23. Guests are required to present valid photo identification along with their Caesars Rewards card and payment to enter events.
This area remains in the Rio Rotunda as a central location for players to obtain loyalty cards. Caesars Rewards kiosks will also be available for players to reprint their card without having to visit a representative.
Methods of payment
To buy into an event, players can use cash, credit/debit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express), wire transfers, cashier’s checks, Rio gaming chips, Rio or tournament buy-in chips or credits.
Also, players can use ACH transfers this year. Additional fees will be incurred on all ACH, credit, or debit card transactions.
WSOP tournament account
Players can wire in funds for WSOP events or place money on account when they arrive. After setting up an account at the WSOP Main Cage, players can register online or via mobile device.
A seat card can then be printed at a kiosk – avoiding the need to use the registration line.
Payouts now available in Palma Ballroom
For efficiency and reduced wait times, players can begin the payout process in Palma before collecting winnings in the Tropical Ballroom.
Players can request one of the following methods of payment:
- wire transfer
- casino chips
- tournament account deposit
Players are reminded to bring a valid government-issued picture identification with current residential address. A secondary form of ID, such as a bill or statement confirming address, is also requested.
Winners will be required to provide a valid picture ID. Tax forms will be completed for those with winnings in excess of $5,000 net of the buy-in.
The Rio and all Caesars Entertainment resorts in Las Vegas will offer reduced hotel room rates for WSOP players. Players will need to use the special advanced booking code “WSOPM” when reserving rooms.
The Rio offers players rates on select dates as low as $47. Caesars Palace, Planet Hollywood, Paris, Flamingo, Harrah’s, Bally’s, and The Linq also have discounted WSOP player rates.
Complete 2021 WSOP schedule
Date Event Buyin Number of days
Sept. 30 Event #1: Casino Employees No Limit Hold'em $500 2
Sept. 30 Event #2: H.O.R.S.E. $25,000 3
Sept. 30 Event #3: Covid-19 Relief No Limit Hold'em Charity Event $1,000 2
Oct. 1 Event #4A: The Reunion No-Limit Holdem
$5,000,000 Guaranteed Prize Pool
Oct. 1 Event #5: Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better $1,500 3
Oct. 2 Event #6: High Roller No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed $25,000 3
Oct. 3 Event #7: Dealers Choice 6-Handed $1,500 3
Oct. 4 Event #8: No-Limit Hold’em Deepstack $600 2
Oct. 4 Event #9: Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship $10,000 4
Oct. 5 Event #10: Super Turbo Bounty No Limit Hold'em (freezeout) $1,000 1
Oct. 5 Event #11: Heads Up No Limit Hold'em Championship $25,000 3
Oct. 5 Event #12: Limit Hold’em $1,500 3
Oct. 6 Event #13: Freezeout No Limit Hold'em $3,000 3
Oct. 6 Event #14: Seven Card Stud $1,500 3
Oct. 7 Event #15: 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em $1,500 3
Oct. 7 Event #16: Limit Hold'em Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 8 Event #17A: MILLIONAIRE MAKER No-Limit Hold’em $1,500 5
Oct. 8 Event #18: Mixed Triple Draw Lowball (Limit) $2,500 3
Oct. 9 Event #17B: MILLIONAIRE MAKER No Limit Hold'em $1,500 1
Oct. 9 Event #19: Seven Card Stud Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 10 Event #20A: Flip & Go No Limit Hold'em Presented by GGPoker $1,000 2
Oct. 10 Event #21: Mixed: Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better; Omaha Hi Lo 8 or Better; Big O $1,500 3
Oct. 10 Event #20B: Flip & Go No Limit Hold'em Presented by GGPoker $1,000 1
Oct. 11 Event #22: LADIES No-Limit Hold’em Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 11 Event #23: Eight Game Mix 6-Handed $1,500 3
Oct. 12 Event #24: Pot-Limit Omaha Deepstack (8-Handed) $600 2
Oct. 12 Event #25: 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em $5,000 3
Oct. 13 Event #26: Freezeout No-Limit Holdem $1,000 2
Oct. 13 Event #27: H.O.R.S.E. $1,500 3
Oct. 14 Event #28: Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed $1,000 3
Oct. 14 Event #29: Short Deck No Limit Hold'em $10,000 3
Oct. 15 Event #30A: MONSTER STACK No Limit Hold'em (freezeout) $1,500 5
Oct. 15 Event #31: No-Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw $1,500 3
Oct. 16 Event #30B: MONSTER STACK No Limit Hold'em $1,500 1
Oct. 16 Event #32: H.O.R.S.E. $3,000 3
Oct. 17 Event #33: 8-Handed No-Limit Hold’em Deepstack $800 2
Oct. 17 Event #34: Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw $1,500 3
Oct. 18 Event #35: Freezeout No-Limit Holdem $500 2
Oct. 18 Event #36: Dealers Choice 6-Handed Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 19 Event #37: Super Turbo Bounty No Limit Hold'em (freezeout) $1,500 1
Oct. 19 Event #38: High Roller No Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $50,000 3
Oct. 20 Event #39: Pot-Limit Omaha (8-Handed) $1,500 3
Oct. 20 Event #40: H.O.R.S.E. Championship $10,000 4
Oct. 21 Event #41: Freezeout No Limit Hold'em $2,500 3
Oct. 21 Event #42: Razz $1,500 3
Oct. 22 Event #43A: DOUBLE STACK No Limit Hold'em $1,000 5
Oct. 23 Event #45: Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed Championship $10,000 4
Oct. 24 Event #46: No-Limit Hold’em Deepstack $800 2
Oct. 24 Event #47: Freezeout No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed $5,000 3
Oct. 25 Event #48: SHOOTOUT No Limit Hold'em $1,500 3
Oct. 25 Event #48: SHOOTOUT No Limit Hold'em $1,500 3
Oct. 25 Event #49: No-Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 26 Event #50: Mixed No Limit Hold'em/Pot-Limit Omaha Deepstack 8-Handed $600 2
Oct. 26 Event #51: 6-Handed No-Limit Hold’em $3,000 2
Oct. 27 Event #52A: SENIORS No-Limit Hold’em Championship $1,000 1
Oct. 27 Event #53: High Roller Pot-Limit Omaha (8-Handed) $25,000 4
Oct. 28 Event #52B: SENIORS No-Limit Hold’em Championship $1,000 1
Oct. 28 Event #54: Nine Game Mix 6-Handed $2,500 1
Oct. 29 Event #55A: COLOSSUS No-Limit Hold’em $400 3
Oct. 29 Event #56: 6-Handed No Limit Hold'em Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 30 Event #55B: COLOSSUS No-Limit Hold’em $400 1
Oct. 30 Event #57: Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw Championship $10,000 3
Oct. 31 Event #58: SUPER SENIORS No-Limit Hold’em $1,000 3
Oct. 31 Event #59: TAG TEAM No Limit Hold'em $1,000 3
Oct. 31 Event #60: Poker Players Championship 6-Handed $50,000 5
Nov. 1 Event #61: Deepstack Championship No Limit Hold'em $600 3
Nov. 1 Event #62: Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better (8-Handed) $1,500 3
Nov. 2 Event #63: SALUTE to Warriors - No-Limit Hold’em $500 3
Nov. 2 Event #64: Mixed No Limit Hold'em; Pot-Limit Omaha (8-Handed) $5,000 2
Nov. 3 Event #65: MINI Main Event No-Limit Hold’em (freezeout) $1,000 2
Nov. 3 Event #66: Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship (8-Handed) $10,000 3
Nov. 4 Event #67A: MAIN EVENT No Limit Hold'em World Championship - Day 1A $10,000 1
Nov. 5 Event #67B: MAIN EVENT No Limit Hold'em World Championship - Day 1B $10,000 1
Nov. 6 Event #67C: MAIN EVENT No Limit Hold'em World Championship - Day 1C $10,000 1
Nov. 7 Event #67D: MAIN EVENT No Limit Hold'em World Championship - Day 1D $10,000 1
Nov. 8 Event #68A: LITTLE ONE FOR ONE DROP No-Limit Hold’em $1,111 5
Nov. 9 Event #68B: LITTLE ONE FOR ONE DROP No-Limit Hold’em $1,111 1
Nov. 10 Event #68C: LITTLE ONE FOR ONE DROP No-Limit Hold’em $1,111 1
Nov. 10 Event #69: Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better $1,500 3
Nov. 11 Event #70A: CRAZY EIGHTS No Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $888 6
Nov. 11 Event #71: BOUNTY Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed $1,500 1
Nov. 12 Event #70B: CRAZY EIGHTS No Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $888 1
Nov. 12 Event #72: Mixed No Limit Hold'em; Pot-Limit Omaha (8-Handed) $1,500 3
Nov. 13 Event #70C: CRAZY EIGHTS No Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $888 1
Nov. 13 Event #73: Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship $10,000 3
Nov. 14 Event #70D: CRAZY EIGHTS No Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $888 1
Nov. 14 Event #74: Mixed Big Bet Event $2,500 3
Nov. 15 Event #75: Freezeout No-Limit Holdem $1,500 3
Nov. 15 Event #76: Super Turbo Bounty No Limit Hold'em (freezeout) $10,000 2
Nov. 16 Event #77: FIFTY STACK No-Limit Hold’em $1,500 2
Nov. 16 Event #78: Razz Championship $10,000 3
Nov. 17 Event #79: Poker Hall of Fame Bounty No Limit Hold'em (freezeout) $1,979 2
Nov. 17 Event #80: 6-Handed Pot-Limit Omaha $3,000 4
Nov. 18 Event #81: No-Limit Hold’em Deepstack $800 2
Nov. 18 Event #82: Super High Roller No Limit Hold'em $250,000 3
Nov. 19 Event #83A: The Closer - No-Limit Hold’em $1,500 3
Nov. 19 Event #84: HIGH ROLLER Pot-Limit Omaha $50,000 2
Nov. 20 Event #83B: The Closer - No-Limit Hold’em $1,500 1
Nov. 20 Event #85: HIGH ROLLER No-Limit Hold’em $50,000 2
Nov. 21 Event #86: Super Turbo No Limit Hold'em $1,000 1
Nov. 21 Event #87: High Roller No-Limit Hold’em $100,000 3
Nov. 22 Event #88: 8-Handed No Limit Hold'em $5,000 2
* photos courtesy WSOP