How do live tournaments work? Where can I join one?
Want to join a tournament? There are both Swiss and Arena tournaments starting constantly on Chess.com, so there will always be an event to take part in!
See at the bottom of this article for the full detailed tournament schedule.
How to join
To find a tournament,
first go to
, and then click on the
Or, go here: https://www.chess.com/play/online/tournaments
This will take you to our tournament's page where you can
find and join the tournament of your choice:
tab shows a list of
all ongoing and upcoming tournaments
of tournament, the
number of players
. You can
click 'Join' to the right of the tournament to join right away!
You can only join a tournament at most one hour before the tournament starts. If the tournament starts later than that, you will have to wait until there is 1 hour or less until the tournament starts, then you can join.
Even if the tournament has already started, often you will still be able to join (though you will have a disadvantage if some games have already been played!)
For example, even though the Bullet Arena in the image above only has 17 minutes left,
you can still join and get some games in. Who knows, you could win ten quick ones in a row and even place!
Click on the
Schedule tab to see a more
graphical representation of the ongoing and upcoming tournaments:
Click on any of the bars here to be taken to the tournament
, where you can join if possible,
or just watch and chat!
Observe tab will show
only tournaments that have already started, though you will still be able to join some of them (if they are Arena tournaments, for example)
Daily Tournaments tab
will take you to a
separate page for Daily tournaments.
Daily tournaments are done in a different format and take much longer to play out, so
they are not shown on this same schedule.
You can read more about Daily tournaments here.
After you join or open the tournament,
it will be displayed in a new tab on your Play screen, in the same way a new game or observed game is displayed:
Under the title, we can see information about the tournament.
In the example image above, it says that this tournament is
chess (rather than Chess960 or Doubles for example) and that
18 players have joined
so far. We also see that
the tournament will start in 16 minutes.
To the right of the title, it shows the amount of time left in the tournament (this only applies to arena tournaments)
In this case, all
30 minutes remain because the arena has not yet started.
If you joined accidentally, or don't want to play anymore,
simply close out the tournament tab by clicking the 'x':
One minute before the tournament starts, all players will receive a reminder in all chat areas, and in their alerts, letting them know to be ready. When the tournament starts, your game will start automatically, so be sure you are in the tournament window and ready to go!
The standings tab shows who is winning the tournament currently. In the example image above, the tournament has not started, so it shows the players by order of rating, highest to lowest.
Once the tournament starts, and games are played, the players will be shown in order of their score.
In a Swiss tournament, standings will look like this:
The numbers to the right of the name show the wins out of total games played.
4/4 means the player has won all four games.
The second number in to the right of the score is the member's tie-break score
(Click here to learn more about tie-break scores.)
In an Arena tournament, standings will look like this:
The red number next to the flame icon is the player's
. In Arena tournaments,
you get more points if you are on a win streak.
The other number is the player's total score.
When the time runs out, the player with the most points wins!
Read more about Arena tournaments here!
The games tab shows
a list of all the ongoing games in the tournament.
Click on a game to watch it!
Even if you aren't playing in the tournament, you can still view the Games tab and watch games. This can be a fun way to watch tournaments such as Titled Tuesday or Arena Kings, and follow your favorite players.
The Chat tab is where players can chat before and after the event, it is also where the announcement of the winners will be when the tournament is over. Spectators can also chat here as the tournament is ongoing.
While you can see the upcoming tournaments on our tournament schedule page, you may want to plan for a tournament farther in advance. Below, you can see when each type of tournament will start, for as far ahead as you like.
The tournament schedule repeats every two hours. Some tournaments cycle through various variants or time controls throughout the day.
Times are based in Pacific time (GMT -7)
Arena 5|0 Blitz- Every 2 hours, on the hour (even hours only)
Arena 3|2 Blitz- Every 2 hours, on the hour (odd hours only)
Swiss 5|0 Blitz- Every 2 hours, @ :05 (odd hours only)
Swiss 3|0 Blitz- Every 4 hours, @ :05 (starting @ 2:05am)
Swiss 2|1 Bullet- Every 4 hours, @ :05 (starting @ 12:05am)
Arena 2|1 Bullet- Every 2 hours, @ :10 (even hours only)
Arena 3|0 Variant
Arena 3|0 Live960 - Every 4 hours, @ :15 (starting at 12:15am)
Arena 3|0 King of the Hill- Every 3 Hours, @ :15 (starting at 1:15am)
Arena 3|0 3 Check- Every 4 hours, @ :15 (starting at 2:15am)
Arena 3|0 Crazyhouse- Every 4 hours, @ :15 (starting at 3:15am)
Arena 1|0 Bullet- Every Hour @ :20
Swiss 3|0 Live 960- Every 4 hours, @ :20 (starting @ 12:20am)
Swiss 3|0 Crazyhouse- Every 6 hours, @ :20 (starting at 3:20am)
Swiss 3|0 King of the Hill- Every 6 hours, @ :20 (starting at 5:20am)
Swiss 3|2 Premium Blitz- Every 4 hours, @ :25 (starting at 12:25am)
Swiss 5|5 Premium Blitz- Every 4 hours, @ :25 (starting at 2:25am)
Arena 3|0 Blitz- Every Hour @ :30
Swiss 10|0 Blitz- Every 4 hours, @ :35 (starting @ 12:35am)
Swiss 15|10 Rapid- Every 4 hours, @ :35 (starting @ 1:35am)
Swiss 10|0 Live960 - Every 4 hours, @ :35 (starting @ 2:35am)
Swiss 30|0 Rapid Quad- Every 4 hours, @ :35 (starting @ 3:35am)
Swiss 1|0 Crazyhouse- Every 3 hours, @ :40 (starting @ 12:40am)
Swiss 1|0 3 Check- Every 3 hours, @ :40 (starting @ 1:40am)
Swiss 1|0 King of the Hill- Every 3 hours, @ :40 (starting @ 2:40am)
Arena 1|0 King of the Hill- Every 3 hours, @ :45 (starting at 12:45am)
Arena 1|0 3 Check- Every 3 hours, @:45 (starting at 1:45am)
Arena 1|0 Crazyhouse- Every 3 hours, @:45 (starting at 2:45am)
Arena 1|0 Bullet- Every Hour @ :50
Swiss 1|0 Bullet- Every 4 hours, @ :55 (starting @ 1:55am)
If the information in this article is out of date, incorrect, or unclear, or if you have questions about it, please let us know!