Definition of Up the Ante

What does the term "up the ante" mean? What is the definition of the term "up the ante"?

The term "up the ante" got its start in the world of poker but has transitioned over to mainstream usage as well.

The King explains the meaning of Up the Ante when it comes to the game of poker.  What does the term mean?"Up the ante" means "increasing the stakes". By increasing the stakes, you are increasing your potential payoff as well.

In poker, an "ante" is a forced bet that all players at the table must put in before the hand gets underway.

So, if you are "upping the ante", this means that you are increasing the amount that each player is putting into the hand.

In terms of general usage, "upping the ante" occurs when you are increasing the stakes, and thus increasing the amount of your potential pot as well.

An example: Let's say that the United States and China are involved in a trade war. The United States decides to increase tariffs on China, in retaliation for a move that China has previously made.

By retaliating, the United States is said to be "upping the ante", as they are increasing the "stakes". On the flip side, by increasing the stakes, the United States is both:

1) Increasing the risk (China could potentially undertake further measures to hurt the United States)

2) Increasing the potential payout (China capitulates, United States secures a better deal)


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