There are a countless number of online poker rooms out there. The choice can at times seem overwhelming, particularly if you’re new to poker, or don’t have any prior experience playing online. Discovering what the best online poker sites are is no easy task simply because the answer will differ depending on your player preferences.
Most probably you simply don’t have the time to personally sign up to, and check out, every poker site before determining which one suits you the most. This guide should help direct you toward the sites most relevant to your player preferences and priorities, cutting down on the sometimes time-consuming work of finding your favourite poker site.
A good poker site will give you information about what exactly it is they offer, and what makes them unique, before you sign-up. Look for answers to the following;
Type of Poker
The first thing to think about is what type of poker you prefer to play. Are you a newbie playing for practise or do you have what it takes to play with real money? Do you like a casual, laid-back game or high-speed and tense rounds of poker? Many sites focus on Texas Hold’Em, but if you prefer variants like Crazy Pineapple, Seven Card Stud or Omaha, then you can find sites which offer this too. You might also want to check whether the site offers regular free-roll opportunities.
Consider your own skill level and find a site where the player base is mixed with players of matching skill, as well as players who will challenge you. Do you want to play with the fish or the sharks? You might be great at live games, but playing online is a totally different experience. Do you prefer a site with heavy traffic, or one with a smaller player base that increases your chances of regularly playing against the same opponents?
Whether you are downloading software or playing in your browser, you’ll want to feel totally comfortable with the command buttons, navigation and overall layout. Different software can take a while to get used to, so stick with sites that offer clear navigation, a straightforward design and nice graphics. You also want to be sure that the poker site of your choice offers easy bankroll management options, so that you can keep track of how much you spend and how much you earn.
Look out for special offers and bonuses to maximise the value you get out of the money you deposit and the time you spend playing. Most decent poker sites will match you first deposit up to a certain amount, or give you a bonus upon sign-up that you can start off playing with. Many poker sites also offer referral bonuses for when you get a friend to sign up. Always check out the terms and conditions for pay-outs, and make sure the poker site uses a secure payment method.
Guides and support
Any poker site serious about its players will offer live support 24/7, as well as a comprehensive FAQ page. Most sites also offer guides, tools and training to help you improve your play.
Authority and Trust
Stick with a poker site that has earned a strong reputation within the online poker world. For the sake of peace of mind, you need to be sure that the site on which you’re playing abides by all laws and gambling regulations, and that the site can be trusted to treat its players fairly. You can get some honest reviews of poker sites in forums where players share their experiences. Forums are also a good place to ask any questions you might have about a specific site.
All in all, there’s a lot to consider if you want to get the best possible online poker experience, and you may have to try out a few sites before you settle on your favourite even when you know exactly what you’re looking for. It will, however, all be worth it when you have the unbeatable satisfaction of logging into the perfect poker site.