There is usually an ante or boot amount put on the table (the pot). This ante may be in the form of an equal amount put by each player, or a single larger amount put by one player (usually on a rotation basis).
An ante is a forced bet in which each player places an equal amount of money or chips into the pot before the deal begins. Often this is either a single unit (a one-value or the smallest value in play) or some other small amount; a percentage such as half or one-quarter of the minimum bet is also common. An ante paid by each player ensures that a player who folds every round will lose money (though slowly), thus providing each player with an incentive, however small, to play the hand rather than toss it in when the opening bet reaches them.
Loose and tight in teen patti refer to a player’s general tendency to play hands beyond the first round or to fold them quickly. There is no commonly accepted threshold in terms of a ratio or percentage of hands played, but a “tight” player will often choose to fold weaker hands, while a “loose” player will bet on more of these hands and thus play more hands to the showdown.
Antes discourage extremely tight play. Without the ante, a player who has not paid a blind can toss in his hand at no cost to him; the ante ensures that doing so too often is a losing proposition. With antes, more players stay in the hand, which increases pot size and makes for more interesting play.
In games where the acting dealer changes each turn, it is not uncommon for the players to agree that the dealer (or some other position relative to the dealer or the button) provides the ante for each player. This simplifies betting, but causes minor inequities if other players come and go. During such times, the player can be given a special button indicating the need to pay an ante to the pot (known as “posting”) upon their return.
A player who is temporarily away from his seat (i.e. for drinks or a restroom/bathroom break) and misses antes is also required to post to re-enter the game. They must pay the applicable ante to the pot for the next hand they will participate in. In this case, the amount to be posted is the amount of the ante at the time the player missed them.
Posting is usually not required if the player who would otherwise post happens to be in the ante. This is because the advantage that would otherwise be gained by missing the ante, that of playing several hands before having to pay ante, is not the case in this situation. It is therefore common for a new player to lock up a seat and then wait several hands before joining a table, or for a returning player to sit out several hands until the ante comes back around, so that he may enter in the ante and avoid paying the post. For this same reason, only one ante can be accumulated by the player; old missed antes are removed when the ante returns to that player’s seat because the player was never in any position to gain from missing the antes.