Playing poker online is better than traveling to a brick-and-mortar casino. Think about it. You don’t have to leave the comfort of your home. No need to fuel your car or take a flight to Las Vegas. All you need is an email address, a working credit card and an iPhone or laptop.
Interestingly, many poker websites also feature poker schools and courses. You don’t have to know a thing about the game to play it. You can take a course, learn how to make moves and only play the game after you become proficient at it.
If you’re a decent poker player, you can skip online classes and find the right poker table for you. Speaking of which, this article gives you lessons on picking the perfect online poker table. Intrigued? Let’s get into it.
Security and Trustworthiness
Security is the first thing you should check before you sign up for a poker table. Choose a licensed casino with compulsory security features like a HTTPS web address, logins, clear data privacy policies. All the best poker sites are licensed in respected jurisdictions.
In the UK, all poker websites get their licenses from the Gambling Commission. In Europe, operators can get licensed in Malta, Gibraltar or Alderney. In the US, licensing varies from one state to another. Ensure you live in a state that permits online poker. Then look for a locally licensed website.
That said, security isn’t the only thing to check. Read the reviews of different poker rooms. Or find a trusted review website and pick the best-rated operator in their poker sites list. To be clear, the best-rated poker sites should provide multiple poker tables, give out rake backs, support mobile gaming and have reliable customer support.
Game Variety and Quality
The primary goal of finding an online poker site is to play your favorite game: Texas Hold’em, Omaha, Hi, Hi-Lo, 5-Card Draw or H.O.R.S.E., to name a few. As such, you want a poker room with your favorite games. And they should be high quality games.
Assuming you’re after live poker games, settle for a poker room that supports HD and full HD resolutions. The audio quality should be of high-quality and the gaming software should be smooth and lag-free. If you prefer to play on your iPhone, look for a poker site designed to run flawlessly on mobile devices.
Your primal poker interest will also tilt you toward websites that feature your favorite tournaments. Look out for Freezeouts if you would rather pay a buy-in and fight for the main prize than settle from a Guaranteed Tournament with smaller pots.
On the flip side, find a site with rebuy, live satellites, freeroll tournaments, bounty tournaments or multi-buy contests if you like one of these competitions. The online requirement is to understand the rules of every competition before you spend your money.
Betting Amounts and Pot Sizes
One of the best ways to find a poker room that suits you is to check the betting amounts and pot sizes. Low-stake games often attract beginners. And this means you have a decent chance of winning. The only downside is that the pot sizes are small.
The opposite side of the spectrum links you to sharks. It’s not uncommon to the best worst player in a table if you jump into high-stakes games with little experience. If you’re an excellent player, though, high-stakes poker tables can earn you huge sums of cash.
Amounts aside, you can also choose a poker room based on the number of hands dealt per hour. Let’s say you love rake backs—the small kickbacks casinos give you for spending money on poker. Then you might prefer a casino with as many hands dealt per hour as possible.
One common problem with many small poker sites is that they lack the budget required to maintain poker software consistently. The result is that some of their games have glitches, software is slow and the entire system is unintuitive.
Unless you’re incredibly patient, you probably want a poker site with properly maintained software. So, take time to compare websites and apps based on the quality of their poker software. Consider reading reviews too. It’s the best way to gauge the reliability of a poker site you’ve never used.
Bonuses and Promotions
While some people pick rooms based on available games, others select tables due to bonuses. Everyone loves freebies after all and bonuses are like free money. Every casino gives out bonuses for different reasons. For example, you can get a 100% match on your first deposit.
In fact, nearly every casino has a bonus for first time poker fans. Some sites give you betting credits immediately you create an account. But most operators wait until after your first deposit. Either way, you receive money for buy-ins at various tournaments.
The best poker sites don’t abandon you after your first deposit, though. Instead, they shower you with promotions at every step of your poker journey. You could receive loyalty points you can redeem for betting credits. Or you could get rake backs, deposit-based offers and cash prizes for winning tournaments.
Poker is a social game, or at least it should. You can always play some poker variants against software. But it’s hardly enjoyable. Most people prefer to play the game with real human players. You want to test your skills against people with emotions and weaknesses. This your best shot at winning regularly.
As you probably know, the best poker rooms attract enough people to play with at any given time. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a Tuesday morning or Sunday afternoon. The best poker rooms have a constant flow of people interested in playing the game.
Of course, traffic size varies by site, day of the week and tournament type. Small sites sometimes lack enough players to fill a table. And that means it can take quite sometime before a freezeout starts. Against that backdrop, select a poker site with a decent flow of players.