Is Online Poker Legal in the United States?
The legality of online poker has long been questionable, but many states have led an offensive against legislation that prohibits real money online poker on a state level, making it possible for players in four states today to enjoy the game. As of right now, you can play online poker in Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania legally and picking from state-licensed card rooms, which means that your money is always safe and you have hundreds of poker games to choose from.
The question is, how long would it take to see more states in the US add online poker. Well, that depends entirely on each individual state. Some have been early adopters, where others are still hesitant. In their defense, there is a lot of legal legwork to do before any legislation can be passed.
Thankfully, land-based poker is, in fact, legal in many places around the states. So, if online poker isn’t an option, then perhaps traveling to a local tribal or commercial casino is. For those of you bent on sticking with online poker real money options, you can just travel to any of the states that currently offer the game in an online format. There are plenty of games to play and tournaments to take part in.
However, this is hardly all. There are other upsides of having legal online poker. The so-called shared-liquidity between states has made it possible to enjoy better numbers in terms of prize pools. That measure has been successful, and it has brought together players from across states, offering them a chance to participate in tournaments with a common prize pool.
Top Things to Consider Before Playing Online Poker with Real Money
Evidently, there are a few things you ought to know before you start with Internet poker, and specifically poker in the United States. Many states still don’t have poker available to play, which has prompted many opportunistic cardrooms located offshore to take advantage. There are many things that come into play when considering how to move into online poker, and we are here to give you a very detailed list of the things you ought to check yourself. That is also the same checklist we use to determine if an online poker room is really worth the hassle, or you should look to play poker elsewhere.
It’s All Legal: License & Legitimacy
Thanks to the positive changes on a legal level, poker in the United States is no longer a black sheep. Instead, you can find a ton of real money games and play those on a legitimate website. Legitimacy is important because it allows you to check everything about a poker room there is. For example, you can see who owns a card room as well as make sure that state regulators are aware of a cardroom. In other words, you will never have to worry about your money, identity, or the honesty of the contest, as all of these will be up to an impeccable standard. If you are in doubt, you can always have a quick word with your fellow players. Don’t worry. They are bound to know if a cardroom is actually good. So, if in doubt – ask the community.
How about Some Poker Bonuses?
A poker bonus is important. In fact, any respected poker site in the United States will offer you a welcome bonus, which could be quite substantial. Each card room is free to set its own bonus conditions, naturally, but poker bonuses are a part of the offer.
Each card room will run dozens of great options. Some will be exclusive and limited-only offers, such as satellite tournaments or freeroll tournaments, but in the end, you will have access to a great variety of poker bonuses. You will also notice that tournaments tend to be more important to players than any bonus. The poker community is a very competitive lot, which means they are most interested in having the opportunity to prove their skills and progress to the top of the poker world on skill alone.
Deposit and Withdrawal Methods – Make It Quick, Make It Safe
Having access to legal poker has fantastic upsides, and you will definitely agree as much. Legal solutions mean that the card rooms don’t have have to tiptoe around payment processors. Instead, you can use all native and familiar payment options, such as PayPal, Credit and Debit Cards, Wire Transfers, ACH Check, Skrill, and others. You will notice that each poker site actually has a different array of options. For example, PayNearMe and Instant Checks are good options, among others. It’s best to keep an eye on the cashier section.
Customer Support: Make Sure They Are Helpful
Customer support is another important cogwheel when it comes to online poker and the many brilliant gems the timeless game holds. You will expect to always have someone to get in touch with on any poker site you play at, whether this is via email, live chat, or directly on a phone line. All three options will be available when you play poker for real money at a legitimate poker site, which is the main thing. Now, customer support working hours may vary a bit. Some card rooms like to have people on 24/7, but some off-hours are also an option. What matters is to always have customer support who is helpful and knowledgeable. Poker players do appreciate to get things done quickly and without unnecessary hassles.
What Extra Features Should There Be?
Some poker players have very specific preferences for real money poker sites. They will expect the poker site to support all possible poker games, come with multi-table tournaments, and quite a few other things. Some players appreciate anonymity, for example, and all players agree that bots shouldn’t be allowed on the website. Naturally, every poker site that has a reputation to protect does its best to meet players’ expectations in full and offer quick and easy solutions.
How to Compare One Poker Site with All the Rest?
It’s good to keep an open mind when you play poker for real money. Therefore, comparing poker sites will always be handy. Most players agree that having some baseline to carry out comparison helps. So, when it comes to poker, most players will usually be interested in several things. What’s the card room’s traffic and what tournaments there are. The more people are playing, the more real money poker opportunities there will be. Players like to grind cash games or participate in Sit & Go’s, but they definitely don’t like sitting around and doing nothing much in particular. If you are at a bit of a loss where to find the next best poker card room, you can use Team Gamblers’ custom filters to help yourself find the top card rooms in the United States.
Have There Been Complaints?
Having a quick look at a cardroom and specifically, if someone has lodged a complaint against the poker site can be quite helpful. However, it might be a bit more helpful in an unregulated market as reputation there is all. Naturally, reputation among regulated poker sites matters just as much, but you can generally developer a deeper trust with all regulated poker card rooms. Nevertheless, it wouldn’t exactly hurt to see what things other players have complained about – if any.
Besides, trying to find out more about a website’s reputation among the community could never hurt. Many players visit forums and dedicated websites where card rooms are discussed. This will give you an opportunity to read actual comments from people who have spent time playing and experiencing each card room. In almost 100% of the cases, though, if any complaints have been lodged, a reputable card room will solve them quickly and efficiently, and most importantly, publicly, so there is no doubt about the intentions of the card room in the first place.
Best Poker Sites – Play at the Best
What has made it possible for some websites to be at the top? Well, that’s a combination of factors. Having access to many real money poker games is just one of the main reasons. You will notice that players enjoy playing at the busiest poker rooms, as this gives more opportunities to start with a small bankroll and climb to the top.
The variety of games matters a whole lot, even though most players will mostly choose Hold’em when they play real money poker. It’s a fact of life. Bonuses do have their say, of course, but for the most part, people care about competitive events and how much real money is allocated in prize pools. Better yet, many of the more expensive tournaments will actually have satellite events that allow you to make your way to the very top.
Of course, the best sites won’t just have the most and best real money poker games. There will be a whole lot more to it. Hold’em is fine, but how about quick deposits and withdrawals or a small rake back and the opportunity to continually add to your bankroll through various small tournaments, competitions, and loyalty perks? True, most players don’t really care about bonuses, but this doesn’t mean the best poker sites fail to feature them.
Not least, Hold’em is just one of the many poker games to enjoy at a really good poker site. There are other worthwhile picks such as Omaha, Stud, Five Card Draw, and quite a few other real money options.
Ready to roll with the best in online poker? Sounds good, because there are hundreds of games out there all waiting for you. The best poker rooms will be all linked up and offering you a chance to participate in multi-million competitions where you can really showcase your poker skills and be the envy of your peers. Texas Hold’em is not the only game where such events take place, but it’s the one that pays the most in terms of prize pools. Yet, you can always try other games, such as Omaha, and don’t worry – the best poker card rooms in the US will have them available and right at your fingertips. All poker takes is enough players to play against and your personal skill. Everything else, including the version of the game, is optional. To be one of the best, though, you will need to spend hundreds of hours playing.