Atlantic City December Poker Scene Includes Christmas Qualifiers To The Return

Written By Anthony Cicali III on December 2, 2022
Borgata AC poker table

There is plenty of December Atlantic City poker news. This includes the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa hosting many chances for players to get in the upcoming $5,300 main event for a discounted price. Multiple events will take place live in Atlantic City from Dec. 26-30. 

The casino is expecting big numbers for The Return, their $3 million guaranteed event coming next month. The Return series is the first major event since pre-covid. 

Here is a closer look at what else is happening at Atlantic City poker rooms during December.

Over $150,000 in guaranteed seats at Borgata this December

Borgata announced the week after Christmas will be their official qualifier week. Each day will include guaranteed seats to get into the big events in January. Here’s a look at the schedule:

  • $295 NLH ME satellite (Event 1, Dec. 26, 11 AM) – 5 seats gtd
  • $465 NLH Bounty satellite (Event 2, Dec. 26, 6 PM) – 5 seats gtd
  • $245 NLH Bounty satellite (Event 3, Dec. 27, 6 PM) – 5 seats gtd
  • $555 NLH ME satellite (Event 4, Dec. 28, 6 PM) – 5 seats gtd
  • $245 NLH ME satellite (Event 5, Dec. 29, 6 PM) – 10 seats gtd
  • $800 NLH ME/Bounty satellite (Event 6, Dec. 30, 6 PM) – 8 seats gtd

Borgata Survivor Series

Borgata Poker Survivor Series is also back in December. The tournaments run Dec. 12-16. Survivor series includes eight different tournaments. This will include poker buy-ins ranging from $125-$450. In a survivor event, when players reach the money the prize pool is split evenly and the tournament ends. . 

$70,000 Holiday High Hand promo

Borgata will be handing out gifts of cash following Christmas. The Marina District property will be offering deals on the poker tables starting Dec. 26 from Noon to 10 p.m. Atlantic City’s largest poker room will give away $500 every 30 minutes for high hands. Then on Dec. 30 and 31. from noon-10 p.m., $500 will be given out every 20 minutes. In total $70,000 will be given out as part of its Holiday High Hand promo.  

In other Borgata news, the Bad Beat Jackpot was $100,000 as of Dec. 1. To qualify for a bad beat, players must have four of a kind, 10s or better. Also the player must use two cards in their hand. Loser of the hand receives  40% of the jackpot. Winning hand gets 20% and 40% goes to the remaining players dealt into the hand.

Coming soon: The Return January schedule

The live event series will showcase Jan. 4-8 in Atlantic City. Prize pools will generate $4 million in guaranteed payouts.  Pre registration is available online to avoid the lines. 

The complete series is listed below:

  • $2,200 NLH Mystery Bounty (Event 1, Jan. 2-3) – $1 M guaranteed 
  • $560 NLH Satte Qualifier to Main Event (Event 2, Jan. 3) – 1 in 10 win
  • $5,300 NLH Main Event (Event 3, Jan. 4-8) – $1 M guaranteed 
  • $2,100 NLH 1k Bounty (Event 4, Jan. 6-7) – $150,000 guaranteed 
  • $1,100 NLH Survivor (Event 5, Jan. 7-8) – $100,000 guaranteed

Qualify for The Return via BetMGM Poker satellite events

NJ online poker players who can’t make it to Borgata before The Return starts, BetMGM Poker is hosting online satellites and registration as well. 

Starting at $5, players can win online qualifiers to get into the big events all month long. The online winners of the main events package will be placed directly into the live events this January at Borgata. The prize package includes:

  • $5,300 main event seat for Jan. 4
  • Four-night hotel stay at Borgata Atlantic City
  • $200 in cash

Where to find Atlantic City poker rooms

In the Garden State, currently there are only three casinos that offer live poker games. All three poker rooms are located in Atlantic City. Tournaments only run at the Borgata but cash games operate 24/7 at the following casinos:

  • Borgata (52 tables)
  • Harrahs (28 tables)
  • Tropicana (10 tables)

December Harrah’s Atlantic City poker promos

Cash games are available daily at Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City. They do not have tournaments but the poker room offers a spread of mostly NLHE 1-2, 1-3, and 3-6 Limit Hold’em. On the weekends players can find some 2-5 NLHE games as well. 

Harrah’s offers monthly rake back for grinders. Rakeback is when a player earns monthly cash for the amount of hours logged at the tables. 

  • 50-79 hours: $50
  • 80-99 hours: $100
  • 100-149 hours: $150
  • 150-199 hours: $250
  • 200 plus hours: $300

The High Hand promotions for the month remain the same and include:

  • $300 High Hand every hour with a rollover (everyday except Wednesday)
  • $250 on Wednesdays every 30 mins, but if the High Hand is a Royal Flush the prize is double
  • Royal Flush anytime using two cards in hand earns a $100 comp
  • Bad Beat Jackpot

Bad Beat Jackpot was $50,000 as of Dec. 2. Currently, to qualify for a bad beat, players must have four of a kind, fives or better. Also the player must use two cards in their hand. 

Tropicana Poker Club temporarily closed

The Tropicana AC is the only casino along the Boardwalk that offers poker. Currently some changes are taking place on the casino floor and will affect poker hours.  

The Tropicana told PlayNJ “the Tropicana Poker Room is temporarily closed during construction now through Dec. 9.” 

However, Caesars Entertainment has a solution, Players can visit the Poker Room at Harrah’s Resort during this time. The Caesars Rewards Shuttle is operating Friday-Sunday 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. “for guests convenience.”

 Caesars Rewards shuttle will pick-up and drop-off at the following locations:

  • Caesars: Arkansas Ave (near the porte-cochère exit)
  • Harrah’s Resort: Brigantine entrance
  • Tropicana: Transportation Center, West Tower

Caesars Rewards shuttle is free for our Seven Stars, Diamond, and Platinum members. Gold members need to earn 10 Tier Credits and then visit a promotional kiosk to print a shuttle voucher.

Keep up to date at and on Twitter @PlayNJcom for more  upcoming announcements and monthly poker promotions. 

Photo by Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa
Anthony Cicali III Avatar
Written by
Anthony Cicali III

Anthony “Eatahoagie“ Cicali is a freelance writer from Riverside, NJ. He has his undergrad from Stockton University. He's also a Twitch casino streamer and a professional East Coast poker player. Currently covers poker and casino-related topics for PlayNJ, PlayTexas, PlayNY, Playpennsylvania and more. Favorite sports teams include Phillies, Flyers and the Gravina Football Club. You can follow his gambling adventures on Twitter @Eatahoagie.

View all posts by Anthony Cicali III
Privacy Policy