New changes to the Stars Rewards program are now taking effect in PokerStars global client and player pool, as well as its segregated online poker rooms in Europe. The online poker giant decided to go with the full roll out after the experiment it tried with the Italian market last week turned out to be a success.
New Chest Levels
The revamped program has six different chest tiers, with the Red and Platinum chests now being replaced with Black and Diamond. Each chest has a corresponding point requirement, and the prizes for all levels have also been increased, except for the top prize which is now capped at $700 compared to the previous $1000.
The new changes mean it will now be harder to move up levels, as the minimum number of points required to open the lowest-tiered chest (Blue), is now 350, compared to the previous 150 (Red chest).
The first level (Blue) has a prize of $0.50, with Level 2 (Bronze) giving away between $0.60 and $12. Players will win $1.50 to $30 by reaching Level 3 (Silver), while Level 4 (Gold) has a corresponding prize of between $5 and $100. Level 5 (Diamond) will reward $12.50 to $250, with $35 to $700 up for grabs in the highest Level 6 (Black).
No further details have been announced with regards to the point requirements for Levels 2 through 6, but a spokesperson for The Stars Group stated that depending on the player’s profile,  point requirements are going to increase anywhere from 2x to 3x.
Other Notable Changes
The payout frequency for the current highest payout of $700 has also been significantly increased from the previous 1 in 10,000 chests to 1 in 100 chests.
The entire new program runs over 28 rolling days, and players need to open 10 chests to be able to move up a level. This is a notable change compared to the previous program where players climb to the next level by earning four chests in one day.
Players can now enable a new “exchange” feature that will allow partial progress to be redeemed for a lower chest tier. The old “boost” feature, which was supposed to accelerate the progress bar, has now been eliminated.
The overhauled program will also see tickets to a special Stars Reward Spin and Go tournament being awarded. The tournament works in a similar fashion to regular PokerStars Spin & Gos, but it will only be available to chest earners who are able to win the tickets.
Earning Reward Points
The Stars Group is offering reward points across all of its products, including poker, casino and sports.
For every $1 in rake payment at Zoom, tournaments and cash games, players are entitled to 100 reward points. However, in scheduled tournaments, players will only be rewarded 45 points per $1 paid as part of a 55 percent rewards reduction introduced for MTT players in February.
Those playing no-limit and pot-limit cash games with blinds of $5/$10 or above, or other limit games with $20/$40 blinds or above, will not earn any points, as well as those playing 8-game tables with stakes of $20/$40 or higher.
Based on the game wagered on, casino players will earn a range of different reward points. Customers on BetStars will earn 2 points for every $1 wagered on single bets; for every $1 wagered on multiple bets, they will get 5.5 reward points.
A special promotion called “Jackpot Chests” is currently running on PokerStars, giving players the opportunity to win as high as $1000. Those who are keen on taking part should do so before the promo ends on April 14.
Elevating Player Experience
Back in Feb via the PokerStars blog, Severin Rasset who is the Director of Poker Innovation and Operations hinted at these new changes, saying they will be rolled out in an effort to simplify the rewards program and make the experience more meaningful for players.
While the changes are now in place at the major markets, PokerStars has decided to leave out New Jersey, which just adopted the old rewards program in November 2018, which provides huge cashback incentives to high-volume players.
Rasset said the changes came about after the company performed an analysis of how players engage with their products. It will not take long before we get an indication as to how well the revamped program goes down with poker players from all over the world.

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