The fact that poker is one of the most popular online casino games in the world has a handful of benefits for us players, the key one of these being that there is a lot of choice of casino site.
This choice can be almost overwhelming, and that’s why we’d like to help. Today, we’re going to explain exactly what it takes to become one of the best poker sites and give you a few tips as to what we think are the top 5 online poker sites right now. Don’t go anywhere!
People have been playing poker for many, many years and the game found its way into the online domain all the way back in 1998, making it one of the most traditional online casino games. Back in those days, there was just one form of the game for playing poker for real money online: classic video poker. Nowadays, you can play live poker with a real dealer as well! Let’s take a look at both.
Live Online Poker
For the more social type of punter, it is now possible to play poker online with a real-life dealer and against actual other players. We love playing this type of poker. It certainly makes one feel more immersed with the gameplay as the social aspect helps bring it to life. If you’ve played live online poker before, we certainly recommend checking it out!
Classic Video Poker
The more traditional form of online poker game is that of the classic video poker, namely Texas Hold ‘em. You might have seen this version of the game in a brick-and-mortar casino on an upright games console, but you can check it out on most online casino sites too.
The best poker site online should offer both forms of poker so that they can accommodate all different types of players, but this is just one small aspect of many that account for a site nailing the poker online reviews. There is actually a lot more that goes into being a good poker site than a lot of people seem to realize, and we recommend that you analyze each of the following as you go about your own searches online.
Wide Choice of Poker Games
As well as having two different forms of poker games, there is a lot to be said for having several choices of individual games to play. There are actually loads of different poker game providers out there: Evolution Gaming, PartyPoker and NetEnt to name a few. And each of these providers will have a number of different games to their name.
The more software providers that a casino site works with, the more choice you as the player will have when you are looking for a game to play. You might even choose to skip from game to game, and if this is the case, it is all the more important to be offered a variety.
Other Casino Games to Play
The choice does not end at just poker games. You might not think it now, but there is a good chance that you will choose to play some other casino games when you are finished playing poker. Think about all the amazing games that are out there: slots, roulette, blackjack and more. If a casino can offer just a few of these, it definitely has a better chance of being the best poker site online.
Lucrative Welcome Bonus
One area that dominates some poker online reviews is that of the classic poker new customer offer or poker sign-up bonus. A new customer offer is effectively a way to tempt potential new players to join up for a poker site, and it usually comes in the form of free cash to play with.
That free cash can take a couple of different forms based on how you go about claiming it:
No deposit offer: these bonuses offer less cash overall, but the beauty of them is that you don’t have to spend a single penny to claim them. You’ll effectively get free bonus cash just for signing up for a site. Terms and conditions will definitely apply, namely wagering requirements that require you to play through your winnings a number of times.
Deposit required: with this type of welcome offer, you are likely to get your hands on more cash overall but it comes at the cost of a deposit. You might get your deposit matched in the form of bonus funds, or free poker bets when you place a particular amount down as your first deposit. Just be aware that you may also need a promo code when you place one of these deposits.
We all like to win money from poker, that’s why we’re here. And one of the best ways to do this is through a welcome bonus.
Poker online for beginners gets a lot more exciting when there is free cash involved, so it only makes sense that the best poker site online will have a great welcome bonus.
Loyal Customer Offers
Poker casinos will need to go one step further in order to become the best poker site online. They’ll need to keep their existing customers interested so that they do not leave and sign up for another welcome bonus with a casino site elsewhere.
One of the best ways to do this is to keep the bonuses coming with offers for existing customers.
Going back to basics a little, something we really appreciate in a casino site is just how easy it is to use. Have you ever tried to use a website that takes you ages to navigate around because the colour scheme does not seem to work, the buttons are laid out in a weird way and the text is too small?
This is not ideal, so a lot can be said for a well-designed website. Plus, it’s more enjoyable to use when it looks good as we all know. The same can be said for a mobile app, something that has become increasingly popular for mobile sites over the past few years.
Think about what the best online poker app would look like. Why settle for anything less? A great mobile app is a super satisfying thing to use. But that’s not all there is to it with ease of use!
Deposits and Withdrawals
A big part of a poker site being easy to use involves the process of depositing and withdrawing cash. A casino needs to have a wide range of deposit options to suit all their customers, and it helps to not make their customers wait too long to receive their funds into their bank account when they request a withdrawal either. Anything more than 3-5 days seems a little unfair in this day and age.
Helpful Customer Support
Rule 101 for a casino: offer 24/7 customer support. A lot of poker action takes place late at night, so it goes without saying that there should be someone available at all times on a live chat or through a telephone number to call.
If you get stuck placing bets on poker, making a deposit or requesting withdrawals, it could be quite a frustrating experience if you cannot get that immediate help. 24/7 customer support puts the mind at rest a lot more than you might think if you have never had to use it before.
Signing Up for a Poker Site
Now that you’ve got a taste for what makes the best poker sites, it’s time to find out how to sign up for one. Imagine that you’ve made your choice. How do you go about joining up and maybe even claiming a nice welcome bonus as you do so?
Of course, the signup process will vary from site to site, but there are a lot of similarities across the board. Here is a rough guide to getting stuck in:
Go to the homepage of the site and press the “Join Now” or “Sign Up” button;
Fill in the requested information;
Confirm your email address by following the link that will have been sent out to you.
Our Top 5 Online Poker Sites
All of our prep work is wrapped up. There’s only one thing left to do. That’s right, we’re about to check out who are the hottest sites in poker right now!
These recommendations are based on a number of criteria, including all of those we just mentioned. Overall, we feel that the recommendations we have to offer tick most of the boxes that we have listed, so at this stage in time, we would be confident in recommending all of them to you.
Just be aware that things do change over time, but having read through this article so far, you should be able to carry out your own analysis of the sites to make sure that they are still at the top of the game!
So, without further ado, let’s find out who are the best poker sites online right now.
You would imagine that a site that dedicates itself completely to the world of poker would be pretty good at it, and that assumption would be somewhat proven as soon as you head onto the PokerStars site. There are loads of awesome things to enjoy about PokerStars, so let’s find out some more.
If you’re based in the US, you can get an epic 100% matched deposit worth up to $600! On top of this, you’ll get a free $5 bet every week for four weeks just for signing up. Very generous
European-based customers will instead be treated to two free bets worth €10 each just for signing up, and then further deposit bonuses later down the line.
PokerStars, being the specialists in poker that they are, work with all the big names in online poker software development. Their partnerships include Microgaming, Evolution Gaming and Nyx: three of the biggest in the game!
PokerStars is definitely one of the classier-looking websites and mobile apps and for that reason, we love to use it. The only slight issue that we have is that there is currently no live chat function.
A company who’s future we are quite excited about is LeoVegas. They’ve been killing it in the European poker scene for a few years now and are making their way to the US next year, beginning with New Jersey and hopefully rolling out to more states as time goes by.
For the time being, we’re going to check out the European version of the site.
If you’re based in one of the countries that LeoVegas is licensed to operate in, you’ll be able to get 100% back on a deposit of up to €100. There does not appear to be a no deposit bonus at this time.
Not only does LeoVegas have all the best poker games (albeit not quite as much choice of the previous two casinos), but it also has a huge range of other casino games plus sports betting. It’s all-in-one!
The LeoVegas casino site is bright, attractive and easy to use. Plus, you can get 24/7 support on the live chat if you need it. Mobile player? You can download the LeoVegas app straight to your cell phone.
One of PokerStars’ biggest competitors is PartyPoker. They’re the only other site in our top five that are dedicated entirely to poker, so who wins out of the two? Well, there isn’t much in it. PartyPoker does have a lot to offer, though.
And one of those things is its welcome bonus. In fact, the PartyPoker welcome bonus could well be the most exciting we’ve seen. Here, you’ll get a 100% matched deposit up to $1000 plus $25 in bonus cash just for signing up. That $25 is split into three parts: $10 for poker cash tables, $10 for other casino games and $5 for high roller poker tables.
Again, all the big names in poker software do business with PartyPoker, so you won’t be missing out on anything here. Plus, you can play some cracking slots and other casino games on the site.
We don’t think the PartyPoker site is quite as beautiful as that of PokerStars but it is certainly easy to use and navigate around. Plus, you can jump on a live chat at any hour of day if you need help.
Classic British bookmaker Bet365 has been around for many years. It was formed all the way back in 1974! It only makes sense that they have branched out from sports betting over the years and delved into the world of casino, but how has that endeavor gone for them?
The answer is: good! The Bet365 casino has been very well received and a big part of that is their poker. Let’s find out what they’ve done well and if there is anything that needs to be improved on.
Bet365 is available to players in a handful of states in the US, and if you are lucky enough to be based in one of those, you will be able to get a $500 matched deposit to the tune of 100%.
Bet365 has as many online games as you could possibly like. Plus, it has an excellent sportsbook, so if you find yourself wanting to take a punt on a football or baseball game in between your poker matches, you will be in the perfect place to do that.
The Bet365 site looks classy. Its simple green color scheme is effective, and everything looks great. Plus, the graphics as you move around the site are smooth and engaging.
The same can be said for both the website and the mobile app, so take your pick. And if you’re looking for support, you can get hold of it 24/7 thanks to a handy live chat.
Last but by no means least in our top 5 poker sites is 888Poker. 888 is a massive company: you can enjoy 888Casino and 888Sport as well, so we can consider 888 to be a jack of all trades.
But how does their poker fare? Is it as good as the more specific poker sites such as PartyPoker? We’re about to find out.
One area that 888Poker definitely does serve up the goods is through its welcome bonus. You’ll get matched deposits between 100% and 30% over your first five deposits, and it can be worth a total of $1500 in bonus funds!
Just be aware that this will require nearly $5000 in deposits, which might not be achievable for some.
888Poker works with all the major casino game providers, and so its poker amongst its other games checks out for sure.
The 888 color scheme is black and orange and we feel that it looks super classy. Not only that, but it is easy to navigate and it is also easy to reach out for support as and when you need it, 24 hours a day.
Last Thoughts on the Best Poker Sites
Feeling ready to go and get started with playing online poker? We’re not surprised! You’ve got all the information you could possibly need to go out there and have the best poker experience online right now. All you need to do is make the choice of who to sign up with, but that should not be too difficult with all of the awesome recommendations you’ve got.
Remember, you can always stay on top of who are the best bookmakers in poker as well as other casino games and sports (including the best eSports betting sites) right here at Strafe.
Best Poker Site Online FAQ
🎯Is there one definitive best poker site online?
There are too many factors (and too many variables that often change) to be able to say once and for all which is the best poker site in the world, but what we can do is provide you with who we feel are the top five right now. If you sign up for any of those five, we think you’ll be in safe hands. Want to know more about them? Check out our words on them a little earlier on in this article.
🎰Which other casino games can I play online?
As much as we all love poker, there is actually a wealth of choice with online casino games. Slots are actually the most popular casino game to play online by quite a long way, so you may wish to check some of those out when you get the chance. On top of that, you can have a lot of fun with blackjack, roulette and baccarat to name a few.
🤩Which types of poker sign up bonus can I make the most of?
Poker sign-up bonuses come in a couple of different forms: those you need to place a deposit to activate (poker deposit required bonus offers) and those that do not require one (poker no deposit bonus offers). Some poker sites will even offer both of these! Either way, it’s free cash that you can use to play poker online. What more could you possibly want!?
First and foremost we're gamers — and this spills through into everything we do in the Strafe esports betting section. Since our reviews are tailored for those interested in punting on esports, you can expect us to look at key elements such as finding the best Dota 2 odds, or the latest League of Legends betting promo codes, and even a few helpful guides along the way.
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Honesty is the best policy when it comes to helping punters — and that's why our reviews are completely objective. We've handpicked a number of the leading esports betting experts to bring you reviews on all the latest esports betting sites on the market. Each focus on three key things: odds, markets and esports bookmaker welcome bonuses. Enjoy!