One of the most flexible forms of poker tournaments available is sit and gos (SNGs). These tournaments allow users to get tournament action at any time of the day with no need for a scheduled start time. As soon as the required number of players are present, the cards are in the air. Additionally, SNGs present a unique environment for a different poker skillset to thrive.
Stay tuned if you’re ready to learn everything you need to know about SNGs, including where the best action is, what the top SNG poker sites for US players are, all your available options, and how you can get into the real money action right now.
Best Sites for Real Money Sit and Go Poker
|100% up to $1,000|
|100% up to $500|
|100% up to $1,000|
|100% up to $1,000|
Reasons Why These Are the Best SNG Online Poker Sites
- The poker sites offer extensive SNG action at varying stakes.
- Bonuses, FPP, or VIP rewards are available for SNG players.
- Each site has been fully checked for security, safety, and reliability.
- Winnings payouts are fast and reliable.
What Is a Sit and Go (SNG)?
A sit and go is an online poker tournament that has no scheduled start time. As the name suggests, when you want to play, you grab a seat. Once the required number of players for that particular SNG has registered, the tournament starts.
There’s a common misconception that a SNG online poker is a one-table tournament and a multi-table tournament (MTT) is anything larger than that. While the latter’s name would suggest otherwise, this is incorrect. The only difference between the two types of tournaments is whether it has a scheduled start time or starts when the required number of players register.
You can have one-table MTTs, and you can have multi-table SNGs.
How Sit and Go Online Poker Tournaments Pay Out
Generally, SNGs pay out similar to MTTs by paying a percentage of the field. If the SNG is one table, the industry standard is to pay first, second, and third place. As SNGs get larger in field size, the payout spots extend to around 15% to 30% of the field. The exact number will depend on the online poker site running the tournament and what it decides.
For a $100 + $10 SNG for 10 players. The +$10 is the rake for the house and does not go to the prize pool. The total prize pool is $100 x 10 = $1,000.
- 1st Place – $500 (5x the buy-in)
- 2nd Place – $300 (3x the buy-in)
- 3rd Place – $200 (2x the buy-in)
Types of Sit and Go Poker Games Online
Real money sit and go poker tournaments online come in all shapes and sizes at the top SNG poker sites for US players. Below, we’ve broken down all the different variations of play you may be able to get action on. In some cases, SNG tournaments might hold multiple of these descriptors.
For example, you may find a single-table freeroll or a heads-up satellite SNG tournament. It all depends on the options the online poker site chooses to offer.
A single-table SNG is a tournament that is played at one table. The maximum number of players you will see is 10. The minimum is two as a heads-up SNG is technically a single-table event. However, when poker players or anyone in the industry refers to a single-table SNG, they are not referring to heads-up events.
The pros of these events are they generally start around the clock, only require a few players to get running, and only take a few minutes to a few hours at most to complete. Compared to MTTs and multi-table sit and gos, the potential return on investment (ROI) will be lower, but the variance will be lower as well.
A multi-table SNG is a tournament that is played at more than one table. These SNGs are similar to MTTs when it comes to strategy and set up, with the only major differences being the lack of a scheduled start time and the fixed number of entrants.
Multi-table SNGs can run with any number of players, but the most common you will see are 18, 36, and 81. As you might have suspected, the fixed number of entrants on these events are typically in multiples of nine to accommodate a balance of players at the beginning.
A satellite SNG is a tournament where the winner gets an entry into a larger tournament, either online or in person. The player’s buy-ins are pooled, and however many complete seats into the larger event can be accommodated are awarded. Any remaining cash is paid out to the next place position(s).
Shootout tournaments are SNGs where multiple single-table SNGs play down to independent winners. The winners of those tables join other winners to play the next round. For example, an 81-person SNG shootout would start with nine tables of nine players. Each table would play down to a single winner. Once all tables are complete, the nine winners would join together for the final table (another single-table SNG).
A step SNG is a unique ladder system of multiple SNGs allowing players to work towards winning a large prize. Each step of the system is effectively a satellite where you can win entry into the next higher step. Unlike a traditional satellite, though, additional spots are paid out that grant you a reentry into the same level of SNG or the next level down. Many single-table step SNGs will pay out something to at least four or five slots in every event.
Is that you can buy into any level of the ladder that you want. If you’re willing to pay a larger buy-in, you can skip steps of the ladder. If you’re a lower-level player looking to win big, you can start at the bottom and work your way up.
Once you get to the final level (which you can also buy into), you will play for whatever the main prize is. This can be a buy-in to a larger event, a trip to a live event, or a big stack of cash. It just depends on what the step tournament is designed for at real money sit and go poker sites.
A freeroll is a poker tournament where there’s no required buy-in, but the prize pool is real. In other words, you get to play for free, but you can actually win real money or prizes. Some freerolls are open to the public, while others require an invite. Typically, MTT freerolls are more likely to be open to the public, while SNG freerolls are reserved for invite-only events.
- What can you win in an SNG freeroll? The prizes awarded in a freeroll SNG are dependent on the online poker site running the tournament. Generally, we’ve seen prizes that include cash, tournament tickets, frequent player point bonuses, live event trips, and site swag.
- How can you earn an invite to an SNG freeroll? Getting invited to an SNG freeroll can happen in many ways. You might win a special drawing, earn a certain ranking on a leaderboard, or even win the entry through a satellite tournament. The options for earning entries are fully dependent on the creativity of the marketing and retention departments at the top US online poker sites.
A bounty sit and go gives an extra cash prize for knocking out a specific player. It doesn’t matter how you finish in the rest of the tournament. As long as you are the player who eliminates the bounty, you get to keep the extra cash.
Real Money 6-Max SNGs
A 6-max sit and go poker tournament online is where there is a maximum of six players at the table. This could be a single-table SNG or a multi-table SNG. Multi-table 6-max SNGs are run in multiples of six instead of nine. For example, you might have a tournament with 12, 18, 24, 30 etc. entrants. You may have fewer players at your table at several points during the tournament as players are eliminated. All tables will start with six, though.
A heads-up SNG is a tournament between only two people. Because online poker sites don’t have to pay dealers or have physical tables to hold games, heads-up SNGs become much more feasible. Technically, a heads-up tournament is a single-table tournament, but you won’t hear people refer to it that way.
Poker Game Variations
SNG online poker sites are not just for Texas Hold’em. US online poker sites will offer tournaments with many different game variations. Will you be able to find action with these other games? Maybe. You should be able to find PLO SNG action, but the other games may take a while to fill up.
Online Poker Sit and Gos vs. Multi-Table Tournaments
MTT and SNGs are both tournaments that often closely resemble one another. The final table of an MTT is basically a single-table sit and go, and multi-table SNGs are basically MTTs without a start time.
That being said, there are some marked differences between the two. The two biggest differences are MTTs have a start time and the prize pool in an MTT will change based on the number of entrants or the attached guarantee. SNGs can start whenever and the prize pool is fixed no matter what.
|Has no scheduled start time||Has a scheduled start time|
|Only starts when correct number of players registered||Starts as long as the minimum number of players is met|
|Can be one or more tables||Can be one or more tables|
|Prize pool is always known prior||Prize pool dependent on guarantee and entrants|
Online Poker Sit and Gos vs. Cash Games
Real money cash games and tournaments (MTTs and SNGs) are wildly different. Yes, you’re still playing the same game with the same ruleset. Beyond that, though, the strategy, logistics, blind structure, and overall experience are quite different.
|Has no scheduled start time||Has no scheduled start time|
|Only starts when correct number of players registered||Can start with any number of players|
|Can be one or more tables||Only one table|
|Prize pool is always known prior||Stakes are posted|
|Must play until tournament is finished||Can leave the game at any point in time|
|Blind levels increase||Blinds never change|
|Game ends with a winner||Game can theoretically run forever|
Online Poker Sit and Gos vs. Live Sit and Gos
Getting SNG action is much easier online thanks to the logistics and access to a larger player pool. But that’s not the only difference between playing sit and go poker games online and playing in-person. Online SNGs are available for a much wider array of stakes, have a streamlined registration process, and allow you to multi table (if you want to).
|Online SNGs||Live SNGs|
|Automated registration process||Must register with the poker desk|
|Available for stakes as low as $0.01||Minimum stakes are much higher|
|Extensive game-type options available||Options limited to what the room is offering|
|Can earn rewards and VIP status||Can earn rewards and VIP status|