The Best Online Poker Site Reviews for 2021

Honest in-depth features on the best that real money poker sites have to offer will always be the centerpiece of Beat The Fish.

I ve gotten a bunch of e-mails over the past 14 years from real poker players who tell me they appreciate them. I can t tell you how gratifying that is.

As I think you ll agree, honesty about even the best poker sites is tough to find. I m going to give you a real idea of what to expect before you play.

I personally review all of them

My name is Josh and I launched Beat The Fish in 2005. I ve been reviewing top online poker sites for more than a decade. I ve reviewed more than 60 poker sites over that time.

Every poker review you find here has been personally written by me only after Ive played at each poker site for a number of hours.

I feel like I have a pretty strong grasp on what s important to online poker players because I m still one myself.

Online Poker Sites Ive Reviewed in 2021

888 Poker

888 Poker has risen through the ranks over the years, going from casino sidekick to one of the biggest online poker sites in the world in terms of traffic. There are a couple of advantages 888 Poker gives players over a poker site like PokerStars, namely the much looser competition and the excellent promotional offers.

The $88 real money no-deposit offer is one of the only ones of its kind left in online poker. 888 Poker also has an Instant Play client, allowing real money gameplay without downloading anything. If you use PayPal, 888 Poker is the only poker sites that supports it from most countries in Europe.

  • Poker traffic is the second-best in the world
  • ?Rates as the loosest online poker site in my player surveys
  • Instant Play for no-download pla
  • Real money app for iOS and Android
Quick hits from my 888 Poker review

Payout Speed

Fish Rating

Mobile Poker


High poker site scores across the board.

$88 free

In addition to 100% deposit bonus.


One of the busiest for cash games worldwide.


One of the oldest poker sites still online.


All real money games available without a download.

Unibet Poker

After becoming their own network in 2014, Unibet Poker has focused on bringing recreational players to their poker site, helping keep games loose. Their new online poker software is one of my favorites in years, with a no-download version and lots of colorful graphics.

The Unibet Poker 20 no deposit real money offer is one of the best, allowing everyone to try to build a free bankroll at real money games. Although ranked in the top 10 for online poker site traffic, player traffic can be lacking at times and can be brutally low for tournaments.

  • 10 free cash games and 10 free tournament entry
  • No-download option allows play from browsers
  • One of the softest poker sites online
  • HUDs are banned entirely to discourage sharks
Quick hits from my Unibet Poker review

Payout Speed

Fish Rating

Mobile Poker


Only tournaments and traffic are mediocre.

20 free

In addition to 200 extra on any deposit.


Strong traffic growth in recent years.


Moved to create their own poker site network.


Almost no difference from the download version.

? Are there any poker sites for real money?

Yes, many. There have been online poker sites offering real-money play since the late 1990's, with many coming and going since then. I currently trust around a dozen poker sites for real-money play based on their history, payout consistency, and my personal review of each one.

? What is the best online poker site?

What is considered to be the best online poker site will vary depending on what's most important to each player. I think that having profitable games, easy deposits, high traffic, and quick consistent payouts are the most important factors when grading an online poker site. I currently recommend Global Poker or Bovada Poker for American players and 888 Poker for those in the rest of the world.

? Is it legal to play poker online?

The answer is complicated, especially to poker players living in the United States. The simple answer is that almost all online gaming laws focus on the providers rather than the players. There have been virtually no cases of online poker players being prosecuted simply for playing. However, it's still always wise to check online gaming laws in your state, territory, or country prior to playing for real money.

? What is the poker online poker site for beginners?

When you're just learning to play poker, I think the best online poker site is one that's going to be simple and straightforward. As a beginner, your first goal should be to simply understand the game rules and get used to how the software works. You don't want to be distracted by software when you're making a decision that could cost you money. Every online poker site has a play money mode, which I think is best used to get a feel for that site's software. I currently recommend a poker site like Global Poker for beginners because there's nothing to download and there aren't many complex software features to overwhelm you.

Real Money Online Poker

When it comes to playing real money online poker it s important to realize that games where you re attempting to win some cash are the ultimate challenge. The right move can result in a profit, while the wrong decision can totally destroy your bankroll. Real money games simply can't be beaten.

Poker games on the web offer players the chance to win a share of huge guaranteed prize pools, to enjoy round-the-clock cash games, and to play in satellites that offer tickets to major live events. And while play-money poker is fine for getting the grips on the rules and improving strategy, nothing can beat the thrill of bagging your first cash pot or prize.

At, we hunt the net for the very best real-money action around. Here you can find top poker sites with some pretty healthy deposit bonuses to boot.

To win at online poker, real money games are where it's at:

  • Improve your game online
  • Build up a bankroll with big-money tournaments
  • Earn player points and generous bonuses

Top Real Money Sites

All recommended sites come verified safe, fair & secure by
independent experts such as:

What s on
this page?

Our Best Online Poker Sites for 2021

Getting Up to Speed: Real Money Online Poker

It s simple to get up to speed and start playing real money online poker. Look for an online poker room that meets all of your needs. These include types of poker games offered; minimum and maximum stakes and buy ins; number of tournaments, sit n gos, cash games, and free rolls; and bonuses and special promotions.

Once you find the right real money online poker site, it will take a few minutes to sign up. You ll be asked to conform your account through your email. Once that is done, you can fund your account and start playing.

Playing for Cash Has Advantages

The major plus of real money online poker is that you can win tons of cash, just by playing on your PC, Mac, tablet, or smartphone. Good sites will offer a range of real money poker offerings, from cash games that fill quickly and run round-the-clock to nightly tournaments that carry big guaranteed prize pools.

Plus, reputable rooms on the web will provide players with the chance to play at online satellites that offer packages into major live events like the World Series of Poker or World Poker Tour. All of this is done without leaving your home and venturing to a land-based poker room. You can also play when you are away from home and on the road on your smartphone.

Solid Deposit Options

Want to know the best thing about poker online? Real money games needn't break the bank. Leading poker sites will run cash games starting at just $0.01/$0.02, so even the smallest bankrolls can benefit from online poker real money action.

A word to the wise: make sure you find a poker website with a decent range of banking methods. While some sites allow just credit and debit cards, others let you load up with an e-wallet, bank transfer or rapid transfer of funds. Some will even let you transfer cash to and from other player accounts.

The method you use can drastically affect the minimum deposits, withdrawals, and fees you will have to face. That means before signing up make sure that you choose a site with a broad range of options.

Hunt for Top Online Poker Real Money Sites

Internet poker real money games are exciting, offering you the chance of making big profits and helping you improve your game. How do you go about finding the best poker online? Real money sites like the ones listed here offer a great range of card games, top welcome bonuses, and speedy cash out times.

Pick one of our team's top rated poker rooms today and start your 2021 real money Hold'em, Omaha, or Stud journey the right way. It s important that you play at a top online poker real money site that offers you the best possible value.

Changing Stakes

Anyone can change their online poker real money levels at any point. The key is knowing when to do so. Don't be blinded by the bright lights and big stacks of the high roller cash games or that major weekend tournament that carries a million-dollar prize pool.

To survive the long haul, you need to work slowly up the poker online real money ladder and only progress to the next level when you feel that you've mastered your present level. A good rule of thumb is to gauge your progress by your winnings. If you've won 50 buy-ins at a certain level, or made 50 times a sit 'n' go buy-in, you're ready to move on up.

Winning at Internet poker is about understanding the way you play as much as it s about raking in the big real money pots.

Analyse your play to determine where your strong and areas upon which you can improve. Visit former hands via the 'Hand History' tab and study why you lost a hand. Also, don t forget to examine why you won a particular hand.

Winning at an Internet poker real money site is about understanding your play as much as it is about taking down pots and analysing how other people play.

Playing Within Your Limits

There are so many different stakes at online poker sites it's easy to find a level that suits you. But don't be afraid to move down a level if you feel the competition is too tough. Cash games tend to start getting trickier at the $1/2 level but you might feel that multi-tabling $0.10/$0.25 for a few months is the way to go in order to build up confidence and cash.

There are plenty of bad players online that you don't need to go quickly climb up levels to win cash. The fact is there are always some fish that will over-stretch themselves and jump in at a blind level that is too high.

While the temptation is to 'steal' a few big pots at the higher-stakes online poker real money tables and make a run for it, it can also be the quickest way to go broke. When playing real money online poker the key is slow and steady. That wins the race.

Real Money Online Poker FAQ

Real money online poker is legal in many countries around the world. In the United States it s legal in certain states like New Jersey, but players should be careful about where they play and know the local laws before playing.

Getting started with real money poker is quick and easy. Pick a quality poker option and create an account there. Then decide on a deposit method that you can use such as a credit card or PayPal and deposit some real money to fund your account. Then you can either download the software and begin playing games or play right in your web browser.

We ve put together a list of some of the best online poker sites that you can play at. These sites have a good community, excellent welcome bonus and plenty of different poker variations to keep you busy.

It s always best to use a welcome bonus if you can. The bonus will give you free money to spend at the casino and can help improve your gaming experience overall.

When playing online make sure you play at betting limits you can afford. Never play with more money than you can afford to lose and try to play with a small portion of your bankroll each time you play a game.

Omaha and No Limit Texas Hold em are both known for very large pot sizes and relatively new players. This makes them good for playing at when you want to win large pots more frequently.

You can enjoy some of the highest quality real money mobile games on your mobile device. Android and iOS devices are the most supported devices, but some casinos support Blackberry and Windows Phone devices as well.

The Best Poker Sites and Apps 2021: Today s Biggest Online Poker Rooms

In years past, if you wanted to find a game of poker, you had to either travel to someplace like Vegas or find one in your area and home games could be notoriously dangerous.

Nowadays, though, thanks to the internet, you can find a game with players from all over the world, all without leaving the safety and comfort of your home. That doesn t mean that the site itself will be safe, though so how do you find a poker site worthy of your time and money?

Below, we ve ranked the best and most reliable online poker sites on the internet today, so you can decide which one you can trust the next time you feel the urge to shuffle up and deal.

Best Poker Sites Online Today

1. Ignition Casino Best Poker Site Overall

  • Million-dollar MTTs every month
  • Quick-seat feature makes it easy to find games
  • Regular deep-stack tourneys
  • Anonymous tables protect players from sharks
  • Limited banking options

Ignition Casino does an excellent job of threading the needle between being newbie-friendly and being the type of place that pros can make a living at, making it the best overall poker site we ve found.

They have a regular multi-table tournament known as The Monthly Milly, which has a guaranteed million-dollar prize pool. There are also daily monster stack tournaments in which each player starts off with a massive amount of chips, giving skilled players more opportunity to outplay their competition.

There are other features that are aimed at making novice players feel welcome. For example, they have a quick-seat feature in which you simply enter your preferred game, stakes, and table size, and they ll sit you immediately, so that you don t have to waste a bunch of time scrolling through available tables.

They also offer anonymous tables in which user names are hidden, which discourages the use of HUDs and other shady software.

Unfortunately, their banking options are limited, and you can pretty much only deposit with a voucher, credit card, or Zelle no e-wallets allowed.

2. InterTops Casino Most Generous Poker Bonus Offers

  • Offers 36% rakeback
  • Generous loyalty program
  • 3 different no-deposit bonuses available
  • Bubble protection feature refunds tourney buy-ins
  • Lacks a dedicated app

There s nothing worse than watching a poker game and not having enough money to play, but InterTops Casino does its best to ensure that never happens to you.

They have an excellent rakeback structure at 36%, and that money is deposited directly into your account, allowing you to get back in the game quickly. Their loyalty program is generous as well, and it s easy to progress up the various levels.

You can also qualify for one of their three no-deposit bonuses; these use frequent player points rather than your own cash to boost your account. They protect tournament players as well, as they offer some tourneys in which your buy-in will be refunded if you get busted on the bubble.

Their mobile experience is fine, but you ll have to play on your browser, as they don t offer dedicated apps for iOS or Android.

3. BetOnline Casino Best Variety of Poker Types

  • Excellent Omaha tournament action
  • Good game variety
  • Crypto-friendly banking options
  • Large bad beat jackpots
  • 7.5% fee on all credit card transactions

No-limit hold em continues to be the most popular game out there, and BetOnline certainly has its share of NLHE action. However, it has a ton of other games as well, including stud, Omaha, and even 32-card draw and 6+ hold em.

That variety extends to their tournament action, as they have some great Omaha tourneys running regularly. You can also win big for losing, as their bad beat jackpot often gets fairly massive.

This is a very crypto-friendly site, and they accept a variety of cryptocurrencies beyond Bitcoin. Be careful when using plastic, though, as they levy a 7.5% fee on all credit card transactions.

4. Black Chip Poker Casino Best Poker Site for Grinders

  • $3.8 million in weekly tournament guarantees
  • Offers one free check payout per month
  • Bomb pots drive crazy action
  • Openly caters to pro players
  • 10% fee on some credit card deposits

Grinders will find a welcome home at Black Chip Poker Casino, as it s one of the most pro-friendly sites around. They offer $3.8 million in weekly tourney guarantees (and there are a lot of tourneys to enter), and they proudly allow HUDs and hand trackers.

Gamblers will find a lot to love here as well most notably their bomb pot tables. At these tables, 4 times per hour a set amount will be deducted from each player s stack, creating a massive pot. The action will then fast-forward to the flop, with the entire table entered with whatever hole cards they were dealt.

Their banking options are a mixed bag. They boast quick processing times and offer a free check payout every month, but they assess a whopping 10% fee on some credit card deposits.

5. Red Dog Casino Best Video Poker Site

  • 16 different video poker titles available
  • No withdrawal fees
  • Crypto-friendly
  • Offers practice games
  • Long payment processing times

If you d rather play against a computer than a real person, Red Dog Casino is the place for you. They offer 16 different video poker games, and all of them allow you to play for free, so you can get the hang of things before risking any cash.

Their banking practices are just as player-friendly as their game offerings. They have a variety of deposit and withdrawal options, and they re very crypto-friendly (there s no deposit limits using cryptocurrencies, for example). Better still, they won t touch a dime of your withdrawals.

The only downside to that is the time it takes to get your money off the site. While some transactions are processed in about 24 hours, others can take as long as 5 business days.

6. Americas Cardroom Casino Most Secure Software

  • Most payouts processed in 24 hours or less
  • Security team works to eliminate bots
  • Uses bank-grade encryption
  • Extensive daily tournament schedule
  • Little action for non-NLHE games

If you re worried about your financial safety while playing online, America s Cardroom has your back. They use bank-grade encryption standards to safeguard your information, and their security team regularly sweeps for bots, reducing the risk you ll be cheated at the tables.

It s not just the site s security that earns it a spot on this list, however. Their banking options are quite varied, and most payouts (with the exception of checks and some e-wallets) are processed in less than a day. They also have a ton of tournaments every day.

If you want to play anything other than no-limit hold em, though, this isn t the place to do it. There s little Omaha action outside the micro limits, and you ll rarely see a stud game running.

7. Bovada Casino Most User-Friendly Interface for Poker

  • Zone poker great for speed play
  • Site optimized for mobile
  • Interface is clean and easy to use
  • Rabbit cam reveals unshown cards
  • Credit card fees in excess of 15%

If you re an action junkie, Bovada Casino lets you get in a massive amount of hands without getting overwhelmed in the process. Their Zone Poker feature ensures you always have a hand to play, as every time you fold you ll be whisked to a new table with a new hand.

Despite the blinding game speed, it s easy to follow the action as the interface is clean and simple to read. It works beautifully on mobile devices, and their Rabbit Cam software even gives you the option of seeing what the turn or river would have been if the hand finishes before those cards are dealt.

While the site is undoubtedly fun to play on, all that enjoyment will cost you, as they charge exorbitant fees (15%+) on credit card transactions after the first one.

8. Cafe Casino Best Video Poker Jackpots

  • Multiple jackpot titles
  • Wide variety of bonuses
  • Payouts issued in as little as 1 hour
  • Can convert player points to cash
  • Only accepts credit cards and cryptocurrencies

You won t find live poker action at Cafe Casino, but if you prefer video poker machines, it s a great place to play. They offer 17 different types of video poker, and each of the games they offer is fun and rewarding.

That includes several jackpot poker titles, some of which have impressive payouts. They also have several interesting bonus offers, including a mystery bonus that s deposited into players accounts every Thursday. It s easy to convert player points into cash as well.

Getting your money off the site is a breeze, as most payouts take less than a day, and some are processed in as little as an hour. Don t expect a lot of options when it comes to depositing and withdrawing, though, as they only take credit cards and cryptocurrencies.

9. Juicy Stakes Poker and Casino Best Specialized Tournament Options

  • Special freeroll tourney for new depositors
  • Offers both classic and progressive bounty tournaments
  • Plenty of 6-max MTTs available
  • Good variety of deposit options
  • Low withdrawal limits

If you like a little bit of variety in your MTT action, then Juicy Stakes Poker and Casino is the place to be. They offer both classic and progressive bounty structures, and they even have quite a few 6-max table tournaments as well.

There s even a special freeroll tournament just for first-time depositors, so you can take your initial stake and multiply it right off the bat, with no risk involved.

They offer a wide variety of deposit options, including credit cards, bank transfers, and e-wallets, but no matter what method you use, you ll be subject to their onerous withdrawal limits (which are capped at around $2,500 per transaction for most methods).

What Makes a Poker Site the Best?

Reputation The poker community is a small world, and if a site is untrustworthy, word soons spreads. We only included sites that have a sterling reputation among players.

Variety While no-limit hold em is still the most popular game by far, everyone wants a little variety now and then. Sites that offered many ways to play including different game types, tournament styles, and more were given consideration on this list.

Rakeback Online poker rooms make money by taking a percentage of each pot, called the rake. In order to lure players, some poker sites return some of that rake back to the players. This is called rakeback, and it s essentially free money. As you might expect, the poker sites that offered the most rakeback earned bonus points with us.

Players and Traffic The more traffic a site has, the better. This accomplishes three things: it ensures there are always active games you can play in, gives you a better chance of finding weak players to profit from, and acts as a tacit endorsement of the site s trustworthiness.

Bonuses and Promotions Who doesn t like free money? The larger and more varied a site s bonus offerings were, the better they fared in these rankings.

Guide to Poker Sites Online

How Do I Choose the Best Poker Site for Me?

The first thing you need to do is make sure that it can be trusted. Check to see that it s licensed by a reputable gaming commission, and ensure that it uses top-of-the-line encryption methods to safeguard your data.

After that, it s a matter of deciding what you value in a poker site. That could mean a wide variety of tournaments, different types of cash games, a generous bonus structure, and the like.

The site should be fun to play on as well. That means software that s easy to use and mobile-friendly, and games that aren t full of pros. It may take some trial and error to find the right site for you, but luckily, you should have a lot of fun in the process.

Are All Poker Sites Safe?

Not necessarily. Before sharing your personal information with a poker site, you should do some research to ensure that it s trustworthy.

That includes checking to ensure it s licensed and regulated by an independent gaming commission, seeing that their software is regularly inspected by a third-party security firm, and reading reviews to see the experiences that other players have had on the site.

Are Online Poker Sites Rigged?

The reputable ones aren t. They use random number generators that ensure each deal is as random as the one you d get in a brick-and-mortar casino.

However, while a reputable casino won t cheat you, we can t say the same for your fellow players. Look for a casino that promises to weed out bots, collusion, and other forms of shady behavior.

What Is the Safest Place To Play Online Poker?

Americas Cardroom Casino and Ignition Casino are two of the most secure places to play online poker, alongside the rest of the poker sites featured in our article.

Americas Cardroom Casino is especially safe, as in addition to being licensed and regularly audited, they use bank-grade encryption and their security team regularly performs sweeps for bots.

Is Online Poker Legal?

This depends on where you live. Online poker is legal in many places around the world, but you should check your local laws before you start playing.

Why is Traffic Level Important for a Poker Room?

The more players a site has, the more games and tournaments they ll have running at any given time. It also means there will be more weak players on the site, so your odds of winning will be better.

Additionally, while having a large player base doesn t guarantee that a site is trustworthy, it s a good sign. After all, that many people wouldn t keep coming back if they felt they were getting cheated.

Do Any Poker Sites Offer Bonuses?

Yes, most poker sites offer bonuses. First-time deposit bonuses are standard, and many will offer reload bonuses to existing players. You may find other promotional bonuses from time to time as well.

Beyond deposit bonuses, some sites offer rakeback programs and loyalty structures that reward users for playing on the site.

What Are the Best Poker Sites to Play for Real Money?

That depends on your skill level relative to the competition and which games you like to play. Ignition offers the most games and has the most players, so it s likely to have something for everyone.

Can I Deposit with Bitcoin?

Yes, most sites accept Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies, and many actually encourage it. Not every site is crypto-friendly, though, so check your deposit options before you sign up.

What Tools Do Professional Poker Players Use?

There are two basic tools that pros will use to give themselves a leg up on the competition. One is a hand history tracker; this lets them log and review the hands they ve played to see their results and analyze their play and that of their competition.

The other is a HUD, or heads-up display. This tool takes information from the hand history tracker and displays it during a game, so that they know how often their opponents raise, call, fold, and so on.

While hand history trackers are a valuable tool for any player to improve their play, HUDs are controversial, as many believe they give users an unfair advantage. As a result, some sites (like Ignition Casino) try to limit their use by offering things like anonymous tables, which render HUDs useless.

Have Fun Playing Online Poker

There s no better time to be a poker player, as the rise of online poker sites ensures that you can get a game going 24/7 provided you can find a site you trust, of course.

The poker sites on this list are all trustworthy, have a wide variety of games and tournaments, and enjoy quite a bit of traffic, ensuring that the only thing capable of holding you back in your poker career is your own skill level.

And the best way to get better at poker? Why, playing more hands, of course! So which one of these sites will you use to hone your skills and maybe end up one of the next superstars in the poker world?

If you suffer from a gambling problem or suspect somebody you know does, then we strongly suggest that you call the National Problem Gambling Hotline at 1-800-522-4700 to talk with an advisor for help and to make gambling safer for you or your loved ones. Remember all gambling sites and guides are 18+ only.

Casino sites listed on our site may not be available in your region. Check your local laws to ensure online gambling is available and legal where you live. Our guides are reader supported and we may receive commissions for recommendations made in our guide, but this does not affect product ranking.

Visit these organizations for free gambling addiction resources:

The news and editorial staffs of the Bay Area News Group had no role in this post s preparation.

Most Trusted Poker Site Reviews in 2021

We review the best legit poker sites so you can safely choose where to play real money poker online. Our top pick for November 2021 is 888 Poker .

  • When you join one of the top real money online poker sites listed on, you will find lots of easy-to-beat players.
  • You can use simple and secure banking options such as credit debit cards and bank transfers.
  • Plus get access to exclusive promotions, including our private freerolls and specially increased bonuses.

UA players accepted

  • Fast 1 day withdrawals
  • Softer games with lots of fish
  • Secure banking options inc PayPal

Top poker sites

With the hundreds of poker rooms available, it's easy to become overwhelmed. They all sound great on the surface, so that's why our expert reviewers dive deeply into each room, in order to give you the real story.

Here are some rooms that might appear to be competitive, but that failed to pass our rigorous screens for real-money poker games:

Accused in the past of embezzling players' funds, OddsPoker is still operating through its Antigua license, but that doesn't make it a safe place to play.

Although one of the biggest US-facing sites right now, this Merge network skin has had some erratic records with player payouts recently and i's wise to tread carefully. Not only that, but affiliates were informed that the program shut down in June 2015.

Every site we list must have passed the following checks:

All poker sites must be licensed and secure

You will only find sites that are safe and secure to play on which have been independently regulated.

All poker sites hold legitimate certifications and are 128-bit SSL encrypted (the strongest type of protective measure).

Each site must always payout winnings

Only reliable poker sites that can offer you fast payouts are recommended.

All recommended poker sites make it easy to cash out and withdraw funds as fast and as smooth as possible.

Each site must offer a wide choice of popular payment methods

Sites must allow you to easily deposit funds and withdraw them to make our shortlist.

All sites provide a good choice of payment methods and ensure it's easy to utilise the bonus offers when making a deposit.

Sites must use the best gaming software

Only sites using reliable gaming software and poker games that provide you with a great gaming experience are recommended.

All recommended sites provide poker games designed by leading developers like Netent and Microgaming.

This ensures all poker site games and software is easy to use and super reliable.

Each recommended poker site must excel in customer service

We only recommend sites that provide a superb customer experience and resolve queries effectively.

All sites offer a swift complaint resolution process, with multiple communication methods and fast response times.

The site gets a review score higher than 85%

We only approve and recommend sites that exceed all of our strict criteria. You can see our Top Rated Poker Sites for August here

Best Online Poker Sites for Players

A lot of members in the CardsChat forum ask, "What's the best real money poker site?"

Want to find out more? We've compiled some helpful tips in our poker reviews to help you decide where to play and which of the poker sites are best suited to players. We

only list the best poker websites, and with that in mind, we follow the below guidelines:

  • The best poker rooms must be safe, secure, friendly, legitimate and reputable.
  • Which poker sites allow you to make money easily? This is based on the games, stakes, competition, promotions and bonuses offered by the website.
  • Many players enjoy other games when they're not hitting the Texas Hold'em tables. Plenty of fun and varied gambling games can be found on the US poker sites we compare.
  • All the best poker sites will offer players a bonus for signing up and playing, so picking a good bonus (and bonus code) is essential. Find out more about playing poker below.
  • If you're playing from the UK or Canada, you should check out the best UK poker sites or the best Canadian poker sites.

Best online poker sites for bonuses

As a new player, poker bonuses (such as freerolls) for poker sites are an important consideration when choosing which one of the best poker websites to sign-up with. Sites in the United States offer bonuses to try and entice new players away from the competition, allowing poker players to boost their bankroll - everyone's a winner!

Tips for Signing Up to a Poker Site

  • Before you sign up at a real money poker website, look for the best poker bonus that allows you to maximize your first funds deposit and receive some free real money to play poker with.
  • Compare the best online poker sites to find the type of bonus that's best for you. You'll be able to find hundreds of different promotions including satellites to live tournaments around the world, exclusive cash freerolls, merchandise and more.
  • Read the wagering requirements in the poker site's T&Cs section to see how easy it is to withdraw your winnings.

Types of Poker Bonuses


Loyalty Bonus

First Deposit Bonus

No Deposit Bonus

Percentage Bonus

Refer a Friend

Repeated Deposit Bonus

Welcome Bonus

Poker software

All good poker players know that relying on luck is not a suitable long-term, or even short-term, strategy. Poker software is the best option to gain access to the facts, figures, and statistics that will give you a real upper hand. Not to be confused with the gaming software you use to play at poker rooms, poker software is a third party application which can:

  • Log your hand histories
  • Analyze your play
  • Critique your losses
  • Provide you with real-time advice on how to play a hand
  • Provide you with information on an opponent

While there are many different poker software packages available, each has the same aim to give you the edge on your opponents. The size of this 'edge' will most likely be determined by which package you choose to buy and how much you're willing to pay. For more information on different products, you can read our PokerTracker 4 review and Holdem Manager 2 review.

Of course, even the best poker tools won't play on your behalf, so you'll need to make sure you interpret the data you're provided with correctly. Poker software with Heads Up Display will even display statistics you need right on your table, so make sure you're paying attention to this information.

Unfortunately, poker software can be considered cheating by many popular real money poker rooms so is effectively banned on certain sites. Make sure you read the terms and conditions of each site when you sign up. If you're suspected of using prohibited poker software on the best poker sites, you may be barred from playing or even have your funds frozen.

Poker software pros
  • Dramatically improves your odds of winning
  • Free options and trials available
  • A great way to learn more about poker
  • Gives you real time information without slowing play down
  • Can quickly transform beginners into knowledgeable poker players
Poker software cons
  • Top tools may be expensive for part-time players
  • Considered cheating by many popular poker room
  • Players suspected of using prohibited software may be banned or have funds frozen
  • Not compatible with mobile play or no download poker rooms

Deposit and withdrawal option

Central to playing at the best poker sites, is the ability to play for real money. The difference between playing real money poker and free money poker is huge, as the potential to both take home the pot or lose your entire bankroll adds to the tension and helps you and your opponents stay sharp.

To ensure you and your funds are safe and secure when depositing or withdrawing, it is vital you use the best poker deposit methods from merchants such as Visa, MasterCard and PaySafe.

All of the best reviewed poker sites on CardsChat offer licensed and regulated deposit and withdrawal options, ensuring your funds won't be stolen or unlawfully seized.

How Important is Traffic to Poker Sites?

One of the most important things to look at when reviewing the best online poker sites is how much player traffic the site receives.

The amount of traffic a poker site receives directly impacts player experience as the more traffic, the more tables there are to choose from.

At a massive site like 888 Poker you can have hundreds of tables running simultaneously, meaning players can choose a stake that suits them. This also makes it easier to spot 'softer' tables, where it can be easier to win real money against weaker opponents.

A final word on our online poker site reviews

Our poker site reviews are in depth and objective, sighting both the positive and negative aspects of each website based on their individual merits. As well as offering comprehensive reviews of the best poker sites for US players online, we have partnered with many of 2021's best USA online poker sites to bring our visitors exclusive bonuses and freerolls.

In addition to our exclusive online poker real money promotions, our top poker site reviews also cover the important aspects of gambling at poker sites such as poker games variety, competition levels, software quality, bonuses, banking options and currency, personal opinions and much more.

For information more local to you, check out our sitemap to find guides about the best poker rooms for residents of each region. Check out other real money poker games and classics available to play online:

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