MTT Strategy: Re-buy Tournaments

At PokerStars there are by now a lot of re-buy tournaments. The buy-in for these tournaments starts at $3 and goes up to $200 for the re-buy tournament on Sundays. PokerStars guarantees a big prize pool at many of these tournaments.

How do re-buy tournaments work?

We will usually get 1,500 chips for our buy-in at the beginning of a PokerStars re-buy tournament. Within a certain period of time, usually the first hour of the tournament, we are allowed to buy additional chips if our stack is at or below 1,500 chips. If we make a re-buy then we get another 1,500 chips at the cost of the buy-in. There is no rake for a re-buy. 

  • Example
We're playing a $10+$1 re-buy tournament. At the start we pay the buy-in of $10, which goes into the prize pool, plus a rake of $1. Re-buys and add-ons (more on that later) only cost $10, instead of $11. If we lose all our chips during the re-buy period we can even make a double re-buy (for $20) and would then have 3,000 chips.

As a rule, the re-buy phase ends after four levels of 15 minutes each, i.e. the first hour of play. Afterwards there is a short break. During the break we can take an add-on, regardless of our current stack. It costs exactly the same as a re-buy, but we get 2,000 chips instead of 1,500.

After the break re-buys...