PokerStars Currency Exchange Methodology for Satellites
PokerStars hosts and sponsors a wide range of live events around the world, many of which have costs (buy-ins, hotel prices, etc.) in currencies other than the currencies used on PokerStars. In cases where the events are offered in the currencies we do offer (USD, EUR, GBP, CAD), we will offer satellites and packages in that currency, and if necessary players can make conversions of currency in the game client at prevailing rates.
However, some events are run in currencies which we do not offer, and in those cases we may choose to offer satellites in U.S. dollars or another currency. As our players are entitled to understand how these things work, this page details how we convert the costs we incur (in the local currency) to another currency for the purpose of hosting satellites on PokerStars. These conversions affect PokerStars, our players, and the events we host. For the purpose of this discussion, we will refer to satellites in U.S. dollars, however we may decide to offer satellites in other currencies.
PokerStars’ online live event satellite winners typically receive a tournament buy-in, hotel accommodation, and cash to help offset expenses. Before satellites to a live event are deployed, we define the overall package price by converting the price of the event and hotel from the local currency into U.S. dollars. The conversion rate is based on the rate we receive from our bank when the satellites are deployed, to which a small margin (2.5%) is added to cover the costs of conversions. Neither the conversion rate nor the margin is set to turn a profit, from either the buy-in or the hotel costs.
With regard to hotel prices, when we add the value of the hotel accommodation into a package, we use the price we pay to the hotel. We get the best price we can, booking a variety of rooms, in rare instances across more than one hotel. We do sometimes receive a number of free rooms for PokerStars staff who are there to manage the event (though not nearly enough free rooms to accommodate all staff members). While it is possible that a price found on an online travel site a week before the event may vary from the price we include in an event package, this difference is entirely due to market changes - we do not mark up the price of the rooms in any way. We secure the rooms for our players and include those costs in the package value, without increase.
Exchange rates will almost always change, from the time we deploy satellites until the time the target event is played. There are situations when PokerStars takes the worst of it, and there are times when the players take the worst of it. PokerStars has never taken any action to intentionally cause this to happen, in either direction. Unfortunately these fluctuations cannot be avoided, and we cannot make refunds based on exchange rate changes.
If you have any questions about our currency exchange policies which are not addressed here, please do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org