Poker news | Aug 23, 2023
The 10 biggest freeroll tournaments of all time
By Rtr Lucy
In the ever-evolving landscape of poker, an exciting trend has emerged that is capturing the attention of both seasoned players and newcomers alike – the surge in popularity of poker freerolls. These events, once considered a pleasant rarity, have now become a prominent fixture in the poker community. What exactly is driving this newfound fascination with poker freerolls? From offering an accessible entry point for beginners to providing thrilling opportunities for experienced players to sharpen their skills, the current appeal of poker freerolls is undeniable and Poker sites have certainly been supplying this demand in abundance.
But undoubtedly some freerolls stand above the rest. Let’s delve into the biggest freeroll tournaments of all time and see just how big their prize pools were.
10) 888Poker’s 40 Millionth Tournament celebration freeroll series (2012)
Back in 2012, 888 kicked off this list when they hosted their largest ever give away amongst their online poker tournaments, with a $10,000 freeroll rolling onto the site daily. Holding their biggest freeroll series so far, 888 kicked off the celebrations for their 40 millionth tournament in style, handing out $300,000 in just 30 days.
Two free chances were afforded to every new player registered to win a slice of that pie. For any player who deposited just $10 into their account, they were awarded five extra free tickets to the $10,000 daily freerolls. For just $10 sitting in their accounts and no entry fees, players could be competing in $70,000 worth of freeroll poker tournaments. Furthermore, for existing players, if they made their deposits before the cut-off date, they were awarded two free tournament tickets, as well as the opportunity to win up to 28 more tickets to the daily freerolls through challenges.
9) WPT Global $100K GTD Freeroll (2022)
In 2022, WPT kicked off a celebratory freeroll to commemorate the launch of their site in style. With a $100,000 guaranteed prize pool, this freeroll certainly helped WPT Global enter the online poker scene with a splash, and those waves certainly drew a lot of eyes to the new site.
Every new sign up to the poker room was awarded a ticket to the tournament worth $100, as well as an extra $10 to top off the gift. 30% of all players from the starting days qualified for the final and it was possible to play multiple starting days, if a player was eliminated. Although only one free ticket was awarded per player.
WPT Global in only a short year has gained ground and become a fixture in the online poker scene, particularly amongst the Asian and South American markets. If you weren’t one of the lucky sign ups then, no need to let that hold you back from their great poker bonuses. Register now and you can get a 100% matched deposit up to $1200 to welcome you!
8) 888’s Grand Adventure promotional freerolls (2023)
Some of the biggest real money poker freerolls ever were only just held in August of this year. If anything has shown what a great time it is to be a freeroll player right now, it has been 888’s promotional freeroll series over the last few years, and this most recent one did not disappoint.
Starting with the daily $400 Sailor’s Voyage freerolls, moving up to the weekly $3,000 Island of Gold Freerolls, this free poker party culminated in the Grand Diamond Freeroll on the 20th of August worth $100,000. For a chance to win these real money prizes you just had to have completed various challenges throughout the entire promotion period, 30 or more to snap up a ticket for the $100,000 diamond of the series, the ‘Grand Diamond Freeroll’.
Whilst it wasn’t entirely free to play these adventure games to secure your ‘freeroll’ ticket, to secure the biggest ticket you only had to complete 1 challenge a day. And for those avid players already working their way through the challenges, the freeroll tickets were likely the free cash cherry on top of the poker fun.
7) 888’s Galaxy of Freerolls promotions (2020)
Next up on our list, from a site that knows exactly what its customers want, another 888-promotion series. This time it’s the Galaxy of freerolls batch that kicked off in 2020. Across this promotion 888’s freerolls offered a whole $500,000 in prizes to its players. Customers simply had to complete a range of tasks, such as their daily poker tournaments like BLAST or win a SNAP game and so on.
Players had to complete 1 mission to get 2 freeroll tickets to the $2,000 daily Venus freeroll and could get up to two tickets a day. To win tickets to the weekly $10,000 Neptune freeroll, customers only had to succeed in completing 2 or more missions in one week. For the crown jewel of this freeroll bonanza, the $100,000 Saturn freeroll, just 14 missions had to be completed across the entire promotional period to win a golden ticket.
6) 888’s Ace the slopes freerolls promotions (2022)
As shown by the hefty prize pools of the freerolls listed above, 888’s exciting promotional freeroll series are nothing new, but they have continued to up the ante year after year and have given away more than almost any other online poker room. If you’re a fan of freerolls or you want to give them a try, then 888 is certainly the perfect site to do so.
Running a similar system of freerolls to the two listed above, 888 offered daily freerolls of $1,000 in their Ace the Slopes promotion, as well as weekly $10,000 freerolls and ending with a bang with their $100,000 Black run freerolls. However, this time instead of one grand finale, they held 3! And instead of giving away $500,000 as part of their promotion, they gave away a whole $1 million! Again, these tickets could be won through completing daily challenges and cash games, which many players would already have been competing in but for much smaller pay-outs than $1 million. As 888 shows no sign of slowing down these fantastic poker game deals, to make sure you don’t miss out on the next batch, register here and also secure seven free tickets to their $500 First Depositors tournaments as well as a 100% matched deposit bonus up to $888 to welcome you.
5) 888’s Freeroll splash party (2021)
At number five on this list, we have - yes, you guessed it - another 888 freeroll promotion series! For anyone who plays online poker, 888’s deals are ones that simply cannot be missed. By this point, you know it goes, a series of daily freerolls, weekly freerolls and a grand finale all gained access to through tickets won via daily challenges. But 888 is not a site to keep simply repeating the same deals over and over again.
To raise the tension of their players and up the excitement, 888 committed to their biggest ever single giveaway with a $500,000 guaranteed Kings Kamikaze Freeroll. A multi-table tournament so huge that it came with multiple day 1’s! The tournament was scheduled to last 4 whole days and tensions were higher than ever for a shot at a slice of this massive money pile. Across this promotional series, 888 gave away more than $1,000,000, rolling out their usual $1,000 daily freerolls and a weekly $3,000 freeroll to top it off.
4) PokerStars $1,000,000 freeroll (Dec 2016)
Moving on from 888, we come to number 4 on this list, PokerStars millions freeroll held in 2016. The world’s largest poker room hosted a tremendous giveaway with a freeroll that’s prize pool was $1 million. Just one tournament offered players the chance to change their lives and saw the winner walk away with a solid $10,000. A profitable investment of their time to be sure!
To gain entry, prospective players simply had to click the challenges button on PokerStars, choose a task under the $1 million freeroll challenge and complete it. Players could select from either playing just one money ring game or zoom poker hand, or entering one real money online tournament. Once completed players were entered into the following day’s freeroll, all-in shootouts that didn’t even require players to be logged in to play, before the top 8,192 players were automatically entered into the million-dollar freeroll on Dec. 1st, 2016.
3) PokerStars $1 million freeroll (July 2016)
Earlier that same year, PokerStars hosted yet another huge giveaway. Also, with a $1 million prize pool freeroll, but that time the winner was guaranteed to walk away with a cool $20,000, a huge sum considering the number of players competing for a piece of the cake. Although free to enter, players had to win their way to a seat through a series of challenges and satellite tournaments.
After having completed one of the designated real money challenges on PokerStars’ website, they were given a ticket to enter a 90-man sit-and-go satellite tournament. Hundreds, if not thousands of these, were held and those who finished in the top nine were awarded entry to the $1 million freeroll, which was limited to 100,000 players. There were multiple chances of entry for the players who failed their first satellites, to win an additional satellite ticket they only had to make a deposit of $20 or more using a specified deposit code, but once that maximum number of players was reached, the satellites switched off and no more chances were left. Overall part of that $1 million was awarded to 30,000-50,000 players.
Want to keep an eye out for any future PokerStars freerolls with which you can win big, register here and start playing now with the £50 free play for newcomers.
2) PokerStars 100 Billion Hands Celebration Freeroll (2013)
Taking the penultimate spot on this list, in celebration of dealing their 100 billionth hand, hosted their largest ever giveaway to date with their first $1 million freeroll. To truly commemorate this moment in style, PokerStars guaranteed that the winner of the tournament would walk away with at least $50,000, a life-changing sum!
Whilst there was some cost attached, it came in the form of deposits, rather than buy-ins, so at least you couldn’t lose it all in a single game, that you only had a 1 in thousand chance of winning. To gain access to their Ultimate satellite freeroll first, players had to make a deposit of at least $10, but to win a seat straight to their $1,000,000 ultimate freeroll, players had to deposit at least $50 on their site. Once completing the tournament (and likely losing), that deposit money would still be sitting there, waiting to be spent by each player on PokerStars. For players it cost nothing to enter, and the bill was footed by PokerStars, but I suspect PokerStars may have gained more than they lost through this promo.
1) World Series of Poker freeroll (2004)
Now whilst the crown on our list is certainly the most exclusive freeroll ever to exist, it is also the one with the biggest ever prize and shows just how profitable freerolls can be right now. Certainly, you won’t find a freeroll bigger than this one! An invitation only event, the World Series of Poker (WSOP) freerolls gather the best and brightest of poker players across the world. Hosted only 5 times so far, it’s biggest ever, was in fact, it’s first.
In 2004, the WSOP hosted a $2 million “winner-take-all” event and the world had never seen anything quite like it. Tensions were high and every viewer sat on the edge of their seat as they watched Annie Duke take home the momentous sum. Open only to WSOP bracelet winners, these freerolls are exclusive and elusive for most of us, but for a select few players out there, this no-cost tournament is the pinnacle of freeroll profitability.