A poker dealer or croupier is an individual who deals cards to players and assists in the conduct of the poker game. It’s quite important for casinos to make use of croupiers in a poker game.

Poker croupiers’ features

  • Dealers must be very efficient in shuffling the cards in the deck. The shuffling of cards is always in a pattern laid down by the casino. Some casinos do employ the use of automatic shufflers, so the dealer does not have to shuffle cards.
  • A swift croupier in dealing cards usually earns a substantial income via tips. Since croupiers receive minimum wage, tips form a significant part of their income. Hence, efficient croupiers gain more if they handle the cards swiftly.
  • A dealer is also tasked with handling the pot. They take note of amount of bet and any raises made. They read players’ hands at the end of the round to indicate the winner of the game. Whilst doing this, the dealer keeps track of the amount on the pot and removes the entitled amount to the casino.
  • A croupier controls the action during a hand. This might include nudging players to act, correcting players who act out of turn and announcing of actions of players to other players.
  • When dealing cards, the dealer burns or discards the top card. This is because the top card is most likely visible to players and could cause cheating. The burn cards are kept at table level and must not be mistakenly flashed to the players.

Calls made by a dealer

There are times when a dealer would have to make contact with other casino staff.

  • A decision call is sent to notify the floor manager’s presence to attend to a dispute.
  • A player in call is used to signify an empty seat being occupied.
  • A seat open call signifies that a player left the game and a seat is now vacant.
  • A fill call is made to request for more chips to fill the croupier’s tray.
  • A player checks call is used to request retrieval of chips for a player.
  • A set up call is used to ask for replacement decks for the table.
  • A playover call indicates that a new player would take the position of an absent player till the absentee returns.
  • A pick up call is used to signify the removal of an absent player’s chips to free the occupied seat.
  • A winner call is used to announce the end of the game and the prize to be paid.
  • A service call is used to notify the floor if a player wants a beverage or food.

End Note

Tipping a dealer boosts the morale of the dealer. This could make the dealer shuffle the cards less. If the cards are shuffled less frequently, players are able to easily track down certain cards. Types of dealing made by a dealer are the American style and the European style.

Dealers are also used in poker online. However, this is only in live poker.