Before the lockdowns, there were already 40 million online poker players around the world. However, first-time online poker players have increased by nearly 255% since then. This surge comes as a result of people looking for different entertainment sources when socializing was prohibited. Another reason was certainly the ability to win real money. Further, both the convenience and huge selection of games on platforms have enticed many people to stay—and more new players to come.
Despite the benefits and excitements that online poker may bring, choosing the right platform is a must. After all, you’re dealing with actual money so it’s best not to run into trouble or the law. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing an online poker platform:
The first and most important thing is safety. As per poker journalist Jon Sofen, the first thing you need to do when playing online poker for real money is to choose a site that is “reliable, safe, and secure.” A safe platform is regulated by an operator, offers mainstream payment choices, and confirms your identity. Legitimate online platforms typically have their regulator’s logo at the bottom of every page.
Upon clicking, it will give you more information about the platform and its license. Safe platforms also offer major paying options such as VISA, Mastercard, and PayPal. They ask for your name, age, and even social security number during registration.
Structure and speed are the two things to watch out for in terms of a platform’s payout. Payout structure refers to the percentage that you take home when you win. As an example, PokerStars’ general payout structure dictates that the percentage is 12-20% to the winner.
Their range is average, as poker sites these days usually offer at least 15%. The higher the percentage, the more beneficial it is for when you win.
In terms of payout speed, this is the time you have to wait before getting your money. Take for example Unibet, which allows you to withdraw in as fast as 12 hours. In contrast, Betfair needs a 2-day processing time.
Naturally, this all boils down to your preference but it wouldn’t hurt to get your money as quickly as possible. Before committing to an online poker platform, look through their “Payout” or “Cashout” section as these specify their rules and procedures.
Games and Tournaments
Another thing to keep an eye out for is the variety of games and tournaments offered on a platform. Different online poker sites offer various tournaments and schedules. For instance, WPT Global has an ongoing $1 for $1M tournament. While GGPoker has a daily tournament schedule with different prizes presented at certain hours.
What you can commonly expect today is that there are platforms that have daily tournaments with low to average prizes. While others prefer to have a schedule of multi-table tournaments with bigger prizes.
On the other hand, GGPoker attracts regulars and new players alike because of its regular multi-table tournament schedule. This is the best option if you’re looking to play against people with different skill and experience levels.
Prior to signing up or making a deposit on a platform, roam around a little bit and read up on their offers and features. This will give you a notion of what games and tournaments they have and see if they suit your preference.
Online poker bonuses make platforms more attractive and give players an incentive. Typically, new players get a welcoming bonus of chips to start off their online poker journey. Meanwhile, some sites like America’s Cardroom and HighStakes grant daily bonuses as long as you log in, hand out loyalty rewards during your anniversary, and also offer cashback bonuses.
Before joining a platform, read its terms and conditions as some bonuses require you to follow instructions before you receive them (such as depositing a specific amount of money). This way, you won’t get caught off guard when playing.
Online poker players continue to enjoy the benefits of the industry as it grows. Despite this, you must bear in mind to choose the right platform for your own safety and a fun gaming experience. If you liked this article, check out our lifestyle section for similar posts.