In our internet age, online poker has become so popular that the number of online poker sites pretty much exploded, with new places opening up every week or so it seems. However, equally many places do close again as they cannot satisfy the demands and wishes of their (potential) customers in what is an extremely competitive environment.
However, those poker websites that did prevail, tend to be quite good, which is most likely the reason why they survived in the first place. In order to choose the best among them, we compare and them regularly. Few of these indeed adhere to the highest quality standards. We have rated them on the basis of their performance in various important areas. The results can be found in the rankings below.
Poker is one of the most popular games played for money, and is even played professionally by the most skilled and talented players for huge cash prizes. As well as growing from being a casino game and a game played between friends to a vastly popular spectator sport, poker has also become a widely used form of recreational gambling online, with people of all ages from all walks of life enjoying playing on poker sites.
With its huge popularity, there are now lots of sites that offer online poker to their members. We have looked at the entire online poker market in order to find the best poker sites available, in order to help you find one that will give you everything you are looking for in your online poker experience.
Of course, even among the very best poker sites in the industry, there are differences, and so which one is right for you may depend on some of your personal preferences. Here are some of the things to consider:
There are lots of different styles of poker, and over time players tend to develop a favourite, or perhaps only ever learn one style of play. If you already have a preference, then you naturally want to find a poker site that allows you to play the game you want. If you want to try different styles and broaden your poker skills, then this is also something to look for – a site specialising in Texas Hold ‘Em (one of the most popular poker styles) will not be the best choice for you.
Skills and Training
If you are already a poker player, whether you have played online before or played in a bricks and mortar casino, local pub poker night, or games organised with friends, and are confident you know how advanced your skills are, you will want to pick a site with plenty of games at a skill level suitable for you. If you are an absolute beginner, you may prefer a site with lots of help to teach you how to play and perhaps allow you to play ‘practice’ games without staking real money while you get the hang of it. If you are already a strong poker player, you’ll of course want to find a site where there is a good community for people of your level, and plenty of games that will be interesting to you too.
Minimum and Maximum Stakes
While often, how much you are expected to stake for a round of poker and the skill level of the table (virtual or otherwise) go hand in hand, this isn’t always the case. If you are a fairly new poker player but prefer higher stakes gambling, or a good poker player who doesn’t want to risk much money, you should check that there are tables that suit your idea of a good minimum and maximum buy in that also pitch you against people of a similar level of experience and skill.
Poker is, traditionally, a fairly sociable pastime, and as it has become a big deal in the online gambling world, many of the best sites have made an effort to keep that social factor there. Some sites and their associated apps for mobile devices offer a range of social features, which can allow you to connect with people you have enjoyed playing with, chat with people in game, and generally make new friends from within the member community.
Of course, you can also use these features to communicate and set up games with people you already know if they become members too (and your poker site may even give you an incentive for encouraging them to join).
If you want to connect with other poker players and add a more social dimension to your own playing time, then it can be a good idea to seek out a site with a strong community and good social facilities.
Bonuses, Incentives and Rewards
To entice new players to choose their site over the competition, many poker sites offer interesting bonuses and rewards to people when they sign up. These new member incentives can be very valuable, for example they may match the value of your first deposit into your account (up to a certain limit), and, if it is a poker site connected with an online casino, sports betting or bingo site, it may offer you free plays on some of their other games to allow you to try the wider features membership will open up to you.
In many cases, new membership rewards are available using promotional codes, though sometimes poker sites will offer them automatically on sign up.
As well as the bonuses, free credit and other interesting offers poker sites may give you when you join, a lot of them also encourage their players to stay loyal to the site by offering ongoing bonuses and rewards for continuing to play with them, and depositing funds. Finding a poker site that takes good care of its members is important, so look at the kind of benefits their established users are enjoying and some of the rewards they have given in the past.
When you want to start playing with real money, you will want to be able to add money to your online poker site account quickly and conveniently so you can get playing. You’ll also want to know that when you have winnings in your account, you can withdraw them using a method that suits you.
Poker sites can accept a variety of payment methods and ways to withdraw your money, including bank transfers, credit or debit cards and online systems like Skrill and PayPal. Think about which ones you are most likely to use and choose not only a site that accepts them, but which also offers a fast lead time on withdrawals using your preferred method.
Playing poker online can be entertaining, challenging, exciting and fun, as well as a good way to meet new friends and of course, stand a chance to win real money. Check out our recommendations and find the right poker site for you!