The Best Online Poker Sites

The Best Online Poker Sites Checklist

Don’t feel like spending hours searching for and comparing online poker sites? With so many online poker sites to choose from, it’s hard to know which is best! They all offer different bonuses, different games, and different site layouts; it’s confusing even for people who have been playing for years.

Don’t worry; we’ve done the homework for you. In the list below, we break down what we look for when ranking online poker sites and what you as a consumer should be looking for to get the best playing experience. When choosing an online poker site, there are many things to consider. Here’s a rundown of what we look at when comparing poker sites to make sure you’re able to find the best ones on the market:

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Bonus Options

Considered by some people to be the most important aspect of choosing an online poker site, welcome bonuses are how online poker rooms entice players to choose them over their competitors. There are various welcome bonuses out there; some will match your deposit up to a specific limit, some will give you a bonus without needing to deposit, and some will tailor your bonus depending on what kind of games you play. If you want to make your money go as far as possible, then look for the site with the most generous bonus options.

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Game Variety 

Gone are the days when players would only play Texas Hold ’em and nothing else. The reasoning is twofold: As the game becomes more and more solved, players are looking for alternative games to play where the edges between players are more significant, and there aren’t as many learning resources. Second, different varients’ added excitement and challenge have players looking to other tables. As a result, some sites offer a large number of mixed games, including 6+, Omaha, Stud, and Draw games. If you’re a Texas Hold ’em purist, this won’t be a factor, but if you enjoy mixed games, this is one to look out for when choosing a site.

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Deposit + Withdrawal Options

Poker sites have been steadily increasing their deposit and withdrawal options to make it easy for players to move money onto the site. While most sites initially only offered deposits via credit cards and bank transfers, poker sites now offer a range of different e-wallets such as Paypal, Skrill, Neteller, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency options. Some players prefer to pay using these alternate methods for privacy reasons or bank issues; if this describes you, look for the sites that offer the payment methods you feel comfortable using.

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Payout Speed

Once we’ve emptied the pockets of our opponents, we don’t want to be waiting around for two weeks while poker sites approve our withdrawal–we want our money now! While different withdrawal methods have different waiting times–for example, a bank withdrawal will always be slower than a cryptocurrency withdrawal–some sites will take longer than others to approve and process your withdrawals.

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Customer Support

If you ever have an issue with an online poker site, it’s comforting to know that there’s a team of people that can help us with our query. That’s why we look for sites with dedicated customer support teams that will assist with any questions you may have. A poker site without a customer support team is a giant red flag–at best, it means they don’t care about their customers; at worst, they know there will be issues, and they’re trying to hide them!

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Mobile Capabilities

Not everyone has the time to sit at a computer and play poker for a couple of hours every night; some of us need to play on the go. While more and more sites are introducing them, not every site has a dedicated mobile app for players, so it’s important to highlight those that do. However, if you need to play on the go but don’t want a poker app taking up space on your phone, some sites have mobile-optimized websites that allow you to play from your phone as smoothly as you would from a computer.

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Safety and Security 

Security is the number one priority for playing online poker, and you should never deposit money on a site that you do not trust. That is why we look at the licenses of all our recommended sites to ensure they’re being held to a high standard of security and safety when it comes to game fairness and player funds. With so many illegal offshore sites popping up, it’s critical to know which sites you can trust and which ones you can’t.

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How to Choose an Online Poker Site

We’ve covered what we as a site flook for when recommending an online poker room, but what should you as a player be looking for?

Poker Room Reputation

Reputation is everything when it comes to gambling, and that goes for poker rooms as well as players. If you’re playing on a site that has a bad reputation or a lot of negative reviews, there’s very likely a good reason. Most of the time, that reason is that the site will  Not only is it likely that you’ll end up having your money stolen from one of these sites, they’re also really bad for action as no one wants to play on a site that will steal from them!

Bonuses

If you’re looking to make your money go further, be sure to compare sites to see which ones offer the highest welcome and reload bonuses. Whether you want your initial deposit matched or are looking to get a free bonus without having to deposit any money, there’s a site out there for you. Some poker sites will even let you pick bonuses depending on what kind of games you play. For example, you can get sit-and-go tickets if that’s your game or free buy-ins to cash games if that’s more your speed.

User Experience

Having software that’s easy to use sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s often one of the most overlooked aspects of poker sites. Why? Truly great user interfaces go unnoticed; everything works perfectly, so they never attract (negative ) attention. If you’re a seasoned player who’s tried a slew of different online poker rooms, you’ll know how much more pleasant it is to play on a site that looks good over one that doesn’t. However, things like this are a personal preference, so be sure to check out the sites for yourself before you commit to one.

Safety and Security

Knowing that the real money you deposit will be safe and that the games you’re playing are fair should be the top priority when choosing an online poker site. If this need isn’t–or can’t be–met, you shouldn’t play on it no matter what other positives the site may have. Luckily, there are ways to tell how secure a site is. All legitimate poker sites will have a gaming license from a recognized and reputable gambling commission. Sites with these licenses are held to high standards for security and are subject to third-party audits to ensure that their games are provably fair.

Poker Traffic

Even if a site has amazing bonuses with a fantastic-looking user interface, it’s all for naught if nobody plays on the site. A poker site’s traffic is its lifeblood; without active players, the site will quickly die off. Therefore, you’ll want to look for whether or not there are plenty of players playing your specific game type when you most frequently play. For example, if you’re a Texas Hold ’em cash game player, you shouldn’t care about whether the Omaha 8 or Better tournaments get enough players to run; just focus on the stats for your game.

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Online Poker Site Tips

  1. Know What You're Looking For

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    Some players are looking to make money; some are looking to gamble; others are simply looking for a fun game to play to kill some time. All of these player types will have different needs from a poker site, so before you start comparing different poker rooms, have a clear idea of why you want to play poker, as that will make it easier to choose what’s best for you.

  2. Try the Sites for Free

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    Many poker sites offer play money games where you get to experience the look and feel of the site without depositing any real money. Play money games allow you to get to grips with the site and see if it’s somewhere you’d enjoy playing and whether or not the software is easy to use.

  3. Read Reviews from Other Players

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    Looking at the experiences other players have had with the site is invaluable as they’ll give you an honest assessment of what the site is like to play on. A poker site will never have its negative points up on its website for everyone to see, so being made aware of what they are by players who have experienced them first-hand allows you to decide whether the site is worth playing.

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