Beginners Guide to Online Poker – An Introduction
The latest craze to sweep the globe is online poker. It’s taken off so fast that if you talk to your family and friends chances are you’ll find someone who plays online poker.
There are plenty of advantages to playing over the internet, the largest being that anyone who wants to can play any time of the day from their own home without having to travel to a casino.
You can choose from thousands of different poker games that match your personality and bankroll. It also allows players to escape from dark, smoky casinos or poker rooms. There’s no pressure to socialize with others in order to fit in as a member of the game.
In addition, it is particularly attractive for players new to poker as it alleviates the risk of embarrassment for beginners in front of people they know.
Choosing an Online Poker Site
There are loads of online poker sites out there, some more established and trusted than others. As somebody new to online poker, you must choose carefully where to play poker.
You need to consider the Security and Trust rating of an online poker operator and also select the most suitable place to play based on the type of poker game you want to play and the stakes that you will be playing.
How to Choose an Online Poker Site
- Check the Trust and Security of the operator – ensure they are licensed and regulated by an recognised authority.
- Choose a poker site that is best suited to the poker game you want to play. Different sites are better for different poker games and some don’t even offer some lesser played games.
- Ensure that players are accepted from your country – some sites don’t accept players from certain countries.
- Choose a poker site which has plenty of games at your chosen stake level. Some have lots of low stakes games and limited medium / higher stakes and some are the other way around.
- Why not let us do the work for you, we can check all the above for you with our Poker Finder Tool.
We’re here to help though and have developed the Poker Finder tool which you can see in the right side of this page. The Poker Finder will allow you to input the a few simple criteria and then will search it’s database and recommend a Safe and Secure Poker room that is best suited for the type of games you wish to play.
What’s on Offer?
Online Poker sites offer all kinds of poker games such as Texas Holdem, Omaha, and Seven Card Stud. No Limit Holdem is very well represented in most of the major online poker rooms and you should be able to find a table at your preferred stakes pretty much straight away.
There are low limit games for beginners and mid to high limit games for those who have the bankroll to support these bigger games.
You need to ensure that you only play at stakes that you can afford and before you start you should read our guide to Bankroll Management which will give you an introduction to what stakes you should be playing at.
The beauty of online poker is there are games to suit all players of varying bankrolls and skill levels unlike poker at brick and mortar casinos, which tend to host only a very limited number of games. Because it’s easier to match up with players of the same skill level for a challenging and enjoyable game, you won’t be so focused on the money, and can enjoy the game more.
Some online poker sites sponsor tournaments where large sums of money can be won. There are also online satellite tournaments where players can win a seat into the World Series of Poker or other large live tournaments. Keep an eye out for these special tournaments in the lobby.
The actual game of online poker looks like a high tech video game. Players see an actual table with cards, chips, and some sites even allow you to upload your own custom avatar which along with your user name allows you to really create your online persona.
In fact some poker sites such as 888poker even offer poker in 3D, so if you have a compatible monitor or TV then you can really immerse yourself in the game.
How to Get Started
To play online poker players can deposit with their credit card on some sites or they can set up an e-wallet account or you can just play for fun with “Play money”
The money won in real money online poker games is the same as real money and you can usually withdrawal back to the same method you deposited with.
5 Tips to get started playing Online Poker
1. Choose your Online Poker Site Carefully
Make sure you select a reputable online poker operator that has been established for a number of years and has built up a good reputation. They should be fully licensed and regulated by a recognised authority and have all security measures in place to ensure protection for you as a player.
You should also ensure that you are playing at a site that is suitable for the type of game you are playing as some are better than others for different game types, and stake levels.
2. Learn the Rules
Before you start make sure you understand the rules of your chosen game and how to play it. The most popular game to start with is Texas Holdem, but you can choose any poker game that you want. For your chosen game, make sure you have read the relevant easy to follow step by step guide in our Poker Games section.
3. Play for Real Money
Our recommendation is to play for real money. You can start with just a small amount and play for as low as a few cents so it doesn’t have to be a big financial risk. We do not suggest playing for play money because it is just so unrealistic. You will find players making all sorts of silly moves and bets that just wouldn’t happen if they were playing for real money and it’s just not realistic and not fun.
4. Don’t play at too high stakes
Follow our Bankroll Management guide to see what stakes you should be playing at. You must ensure that you are playing at the correct stake levels for the size of your poker bankroll to ensure that you don’t go broke. This really is one of the most important concepts you need to learn straight away as a beginner poker player.
5. Take Regular Breaks
Remember when playing online poker it is very important for you to ensure you take regular breaks from the game. Just like in real life, gambling online can become tiring and addictive so taking a break allows you to step back and see the bigger picture.
If you follow our 5 tips above then you will already be a few steps ahead of other beginner poker players and it will ensure that your first online poker experience is enjoyable and stress free.
No doubt as you learn more about online poker, then you will see and hear about online poker professionals. These are players who play poker full time as their jobs, pretty neat hey, they get to stay home playing online poker for hours every day.
How do they do this? Do they just have more luck then regular players to generate the profits they make to allow them to do this?
Well that is definitely not the case. Poker is a skill based game and the better you play, the more you can expect to make. Poker is like any other subject and you can study and practise strategies and best practises which will allow you to improve as a poker player and become more and more profitable. That is how these professional poker players are skilled enough to be able to make a full time living out of Poker.
Once you understand the basics of how to play poker and your chosen poker game, then you should head over to our Poker Tips section to learn some more advanced strategies and concepts that you can use to improve your game and make you more profit.
Good Luck – and remember we’ll be with you all the way, if you are struggling with anything then head back to us and we’re bound to have the subject covered for you on the site.
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