What is a ‘Seating List’?
In poker and occasionally in other casino games, there might be a waiting list at the tables on busy nights or during big games. This list is known as the ‘seating list’, because it is filled with the players waiting for seats. Players on the seating list are called to the game as players already seated are eliminated or choose to cash out.
‘Seating List’ Explained
A ‘seating list’ is not a list of positions as the name implies, but a waiting list of players who wish to join the game. However, the player often takes the seat of the departing player, so in this sense it does determine seating positions. Where the player does not get the leaving player’s seat, they are often brought in as the first blind and given the starting position – the least advantageous. Other players move round one seat to accommodate this.
Seating lists are most associated with poker, where there are often several smaller games surrounding one main game – or several different types of poker, with the largest table taken up by the most popular game or the one with the highest stakes. Players who wish to join a full game will often be required to add their name to the seating list, which is managed by the casino. The player is then in a queue for the table.
In some cases, the player will simply wait their turn in the gallery or at the bar, although many casinos allow the player to join a smaller ‘ring game’ while they wait. In the event that a seat comes up and the player whose name is next on the list is busy at a table, they might be replaced with an available player from the list. More often, the player is invited to leave the game and join the main one, so that seats are always filled without gaps in play.