What is ‘Short Buying’?
‘Short buying’ is a common casino phrase which refers to buying in for more chips after the game has begun. Short buying usually involves a smaller amount than the initial buy-in, and is a top up for the player. Short buying is not often permitted in contests and tournaments but it is used to boost playing balances in standard ring games or cash games.
‘Short Buying’ Explained
If a poker player wishes to take part in a game at a public casino or card room, they usually need to purchase chips which they can play the games with. There is often a set buy-in rate for poker games, which is a minimum amount required to buy chips. Sometimes there will be a maximum buy-in rate as well – the highest amount a player can spend on chips. The buy-in rate is usually based on the value of the maximum and minimum bet amounts, or on the price of the blinds.
If a player refers to ‘short buying’, they mean that they purchased chips after the initial buy-in, in order to increase their available playing funds. The chips might have been purchased at the table, or via one of the casino’s floor runners or chip runners. Short buying is common in casinos and card rooms during a typical non-professional game, but it is not usually permitted in limit games and in contests or tournaments.
Players might choose to make the ‘short buy-in’ – an additional buy-in at a lower rate – because their stack is running short, or because they have a great hand and wish to make a very high bet on it. The term also applies when a player moves up to a table with higher minimums after waiting for seats, and therefore needs to buy more chips but is not liable for the full buy-in rate.