Bitcoin as a currency has exploded in popularity over the past few years, with more and more people investing in it and using it on a daily basis. So much so, that a lot of online poker rooms are accepting bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as deposit options. We’ve taken a look at these bitcoin poker sites and here’s what you need to know if you’re considering joining one.

The Top Bitcoin Poker Sites

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a digital currency, created in 2009 by a forum user under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. It relies on cryptography and a decentralized peer-to-peer network called a blockchain, meaning that there is no one authority that controls the transactions. The blockchain acts as a public ledger where all transactions are permanently recorded and can be viewed at any time. 

When a transaction takes place, it is broadcast to the network and shared across the nodes; every 10 minutes the transactions are grouped together into a block by the miners and are permanently added to the blockchain. The agreement on the ownership of each bitcoin or bitcoin fragment is reached cryptographically, with bitcoin miners having to solve a hashing problem that verifies the validity of the previous blocks.

What is a Bitcoin Wallet/Cryptocurrency Wallet

A bitcoin wallet is a way for people to manage and access their bitcoin. While most people think of a wallet as actually storing the bitcoin themselves, it actually stores the cryptographic information needed to access the blockchain, view bitcoin addresses and send transactions.

Some wallets are physical devices, like a hardware wallet, and some are digital like desktop and mobile wallets. Each bitcoin wallet will have a public address that people can use to send you bitcoin, and a private key that is used to cryptographically sign transactions. It’s important you keep your private key safe as anyone with access to it can access your bitcoin.

If you’re looking to set up a bitcoin wallet for the first time, here are the steps you need to do so:

  1. Navigate to a site that offers digital bitcoin wallets – for example, electrum.org.
  2. Click “Download”, then choose the installer that corresponds with your operating system.
  3. Run the executable file once the file has been downloaded.
  4. Follow the installation wizard to install the software for the digital wallet on your machine.
  5. Once installed, open the software, click “Create New Wallet”, then name your wallet file.
  6. Choose the kind of wallet you’d like to create (for most users creating a wallet for the first time a Standard Wallet will be the best choice).
  7. As you’re creating a brand new wallet, choose “Create a New Seed”.
  8. Next, you will be asked to write down a list of 12 randomly generated words called a wallet generation seed. This is your backup if you ever lose access to your bitcoin wallet and need to restore it. The order of these words is important, and make sure you do not store them anywhere that could be compromised – anyone with access to this seed can access your bitcoin.
  9. Finally, you will be asked to create a password. This password is what you’ll use to access your wallet for day-to-day transactions.

Offline Bitcoin Wallets

While bitcoin is a digital currency, there are ways of securing access to your bitcoin in an offline way. This is referred to as “cold storage” and should only be used when you are looking to hold onto your bitcoin for the long term and do not need to access it on a regular basis.

The main benefit of doing this is to reduce the risk of your bitcoin being compromised by hackers. If this is important to you, there are two options for keeping your bitcoin offline:

Paper Wallet

The ultimate cold storage, storing your bitcoin in a paper wallet is one of the most secure ways of doing so. Using a bitcoin wallet generator, you can create a public address and private key for your bitcoin wallet, send your bitcoin to the wallet address, then print out the public/private key pair to be able to access it again in the future. As long as your computer was not connected to the internet when generating your wallet, there will be no way for your bitcoin to be compromised.

Hardware wallet

Another way to keep your bitcoin offline and secure is with a hardware wallet. These wallets run on a USB device that securely stores a user’s private keys. As long as you don’t use them on a computer that’s connected to the network, these hardware wallets are unaffected by any viruses your computer may be infected with. The most popular hardware wallets all run on open-source software, so the community can determine for themselves whether or not it is secure before buying it.

How to Buy Bitcoin

If you’ve never bought bitcoin before, don’t worry! It may sound like it’s a complicated process, but it’s actually really simple. There are a couple of ways that you can buy bitcoin that we’ll lay out for you now.

Buying from an Exchange

The most common way of buying bitcoin is to buy it from a crypto exchange. To do this, you first need to create an account on a crypto exchange, such as Coinbase. Once you have an account, you can deposit fiat currency using a bank transfer or with a debit/credit card to fund your account. When your account has been funded, you can exchange your fiat currency for the cryptocurrency of your choice. Once you’ve bought your bitcoin, you’ll need to transfer it off of the exchange to your private wallet to make sure it’s secure.

Buying from a bitcoin ATM

If you’d prefer to use cash to buy your bitcoin rather than a debit card/bank transfer, you can use a bitcoin ATM. However, if you’d like to do this you’ll need to have a digital wallet to send your bitcoin to. To start, select your price range – for example if you’d like to buy $100 worth of bitcoin, choose $0-$500 USD. Next, scan the QR code of your digital wallet, so the ATM knows where to send the bitcoin once the transfer has been completed. Insert your cash into the ATM, then click on “confirm purchase”. Once the transaction has been confirmed, click “Done” to complete the transaction and print a receipt. It should take between 3-5 minutes on average for bitcoin to reach your wallet.

Pros and Cons of Bitcoin Poker

While there are definitely a lot of advantages of playing on a bitcoin poker site, it’s not all sunshine and roses. There are some drawbacks to consider when deciding whether or not to play in a bitcoin poker room.

Pros

  • Instant Transactions – Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are one of the fastest ways to move money between your account and an online poker room. With most deposits and withdrawals being completed in less than half an hour, these sites are perfect for people who need to move their money around quickly
  • Anonymity – One of the major advantages of bitcoin over fiat currency is the ability to be able to stay completely anonymous when using it. If you’re in a jurisdiction for which online gambling is illegal or if you don’t want to be associated with the moral implications of gambling, you can use bitcoin to hide your identity as it’s not managed by any central authority
  • Global Availability – Sites that offer bitcoin poker are available to you no matter where you are in the world. This includes jurisdictions where operating a poker site is illegal such as the United States.

Cons

  • Bitcoin Volatility – While we may one day live in a world where bitcoin is the standard currency, we still live in a world where fiat currency is the global standard. This makes the high levels of volatility that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies experience a huge negative. Imagine the scenario where you’ve won bitcoin in your poker session but have lost money because the price of bitcoin relative to your native currency has dropped so much!
  • Security – Bitcoin is a decentralized platform, meaning that no central authority has the power to refund any money that has been sent in error or has been stolen. Due to this, you need to be extremely careful when depositing money to make sure that you’re sending it to the correct bitcoin address, and that the site can be trusted to return your bitcoin when you withdraw it.

Bitcoin Deposit and Withdrawal Limits

Different sites have different crypto options available to their players, with some offering over 60 cryptocurrencies as a payment method, and others only offering Bitcoin. As well as different crypto options, sites will have different deposit limits it enforces. Below is a breakdown of each bitcoin poker room and their deposit/withdrawal limits (*Paid in increments of $9500*):

Poker Room Crypto Options Min/Max $ Deposit Min/Max $ Withdrawal
Ignition BTC, BCH, BSV, LTC ETH $10/$5000
$50/$5000
$10/$9500
$50/$9500
Bovada BTC, BCH, BSV, LTC ETH $10/$5000
$50/$5000
$10/No Limit*
$50/No Limit*
BetOnline BTC, ETH, LTC, BCH, XRP $20/$100,000 $20/$100,000
EveryGame BTC, BCH, BSV, LTC $25/$2500 $100/$2500
ACR BTC, 60+ Alt Coins $10/$25,000 $50/$10,000
Bodog BTC, BCH, BSV, LTC ETH $10/$5000
$60/$5000
$10/No Limit*
$50/No Limit*
Black Chip Poker BTC, 60+ Alt Coins $10/$25,000 $50/$10,000

How to Cashout from a Poker Site with Bitcoin

Once you’ve taken down your opposition and raked in some massive pots, you’ll want to withdraw your money. Now, playing on a bitcoin poker site, this may seem daunting to some people. However, the steps for withdrawing bitcoin from a poker site and having the money in your bank account aren’t as complicated as you might think.

  1. Withdraw your winnings to your bitcoin wallet. There will be a “cashier” button on your poker site, from there choose the withdrawal option and input your bitcoin wallet’s public address. Click on “withdraw” and the bitcoin will be sent to your wallet.
  2. Once your bitcoin has been sent to your wallet, you will need to send it to an exchange where you can exchange your bitcoin for fiat currency. There are many exchanges to choose from, with Binance and Coinbase being two of the most popular. 
  3. Once you have your fiat currency, request a withdrawal from your exchange to your bank account. Once this has been processed, your money will be in your account!

Crypto & Bitcoin Poker FAQs

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