UK

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Best Online Poker Sites in the UK

If you’ve ever watched a poker tournament on TV you’ll know exactly how exciting it can be. You might have dreamed of becoming the next Daniel Negreanu or Gus Hansen, but do you have what it takes? Don’t get ahead of yourself; you will need to start from the bottom and work your way up.

Online poker is a great place to start and we’re here to help you find the best sites for playing online poker in the UK. We’ll tell you exactly what to look out for and what to avoid. So as long as you follow our guide lines, you’ll be in good hands no matter which poker room you play at.

Check the Site Is Legal and Legit

As an online poker UK player, you’ll find that you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to where you can play. The gambling laws in the UK are relatively relaxed compared to some other countries and there are a high number of poker rooms which operate within the country’s borders completely legally. Even poker sites which operate offshore are totally fine for UK players to use.

Wherever your chosen poker site is operating from, they need to have a valid gaming license which is correct based on their locality. All poker sites display their licensing information on the homepage for users to see.

You should also look for a site that is regularly tested and regulated by independent auditors when looking for a place to play online poker. UK players have a lot of choices when it comes to poker rooms and the importance of legality and legitimacy can’t be emphasised enough.

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The Choice of Poker Games

The most important thing for any poker player is being able to play their favourite type of poker game. That’s why you must check first to see if a site offers the poker game you prefer. Every site will offer Texas Holdem as it’s without doubt the world’s most popular poker game and has been for some time. But if you’re not a fan of the game and prefer different poker varieties you might need to look a bit harder.

There are many sites which offer other kinds of poker such as Low Ball or Caribbean Stud and you should make sure that your game of choice is in their library before you register and start playing.

Gameplay and Software

As important as the games themselves is the way in which they are played. This doesn’t refer to the rules of a game of poker, but rather how it plays online. A good online poker site for UK players will use only games from the best gaming providers and if they have any proprietary software you need to download in order to play, they will make sure it’s really state of the art.

The last things you want to see when playing poker online are games that stutter or freeze, games that crash completely, games that take too long or don’t flow freely, or games with very poor graphics. Even if you’re a complete beginner you’ll be able to spot a bad version of poker when you see it and it goes without saying that any site whose games or software aren’t up to scratch should not be used.

Good Choice of Payment Options

good choice of payment optionsIf you’re playing online poker as a UK citizen there are a number of options you can use for paying money into an online poker account. Credit and debit card payments are accepted by the majority of online poker sites, as well as there being the possibility of transferring money directly from your bank account. For those who are a little more old-fashioned, some will even allow you to send a cheque.

If none of these payment methods suit you, you will need to find a poker site which accepts different forms of payment. These include PayPal and other e-wallet solutions such as Neteller and Skrill, a variety of money transfer providers such as Western Union and the use of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.

The speed of transactions is an important factor too. Most deposits are processed immediately and the funds will be available in your account within seconds or minutes (with the exception of cheque payments), but withdrawals can be a different matter.

Some poker sites make players wait for a day or two before they process withdrawals. During this time you can cancel a withdrawal if you wish, but there is no means by which you can speed it up. Once processed a payment to your bank or card will take 2-3 business days, but an e-wallet payment will be in your account almost immediately.

Another extremely important thing to consider is the reliability of a poker site for payments. You should only play at a site that 100% guarantees payment to its players in order to avoid winning money and not receiving it.

Bonus Possibilities

A good bonus is often the jewel in the crown for best online poker UK sites. Nothing grabs a player’s attention quite like the promise of something free and with so many poker sites available for UK players the competition is fierce enough for it to work in the player’s favour.

The most popular kind of bonus is a first deposit bonus. With this the poker site will match your initial deposit up to a predetermined amount. Some poker sites offer bigger deposit bonuses than others, but £100 is a reasonable amount to expect. A few sites will give deposit bonuses on your second, third and even fourth deposits as well.

There are poker sites which offer no deposit bonuses once you have signed up and there are others who offer cash incentives to play poker against a live dealer or to download a poker app or the sites software in order to play.

Top-notch Customer Care

Customer care is important to UK poker players. They want to be treated well by polite staff when they feel the need to contact a poker site’s customer service section and they want everything to happen in a timely manner.

It is important that a poker site’s customer service department has hours of operation which suit a player’s needs. For example, if you like to play until the small hours of the morning it’s not good if the customer service team finish work at 10:00pm.

There needs to be a variety of ways to contact them too. Phone, email and live chat are the most common, but the phone number should be free to call and email responses should be faster than the industry standard of what seems to be anything up to 24 hours. As long as a poker site has live chat, everything should be ok. Sending text messages to a customer service representative in real time is the fastest way to resolve any problem or get an answer to your query.

Other Players’ Opinions

What makes a site a top online poker UK site? Most players will agree that it’s a combination of available games, quality gameplay, security and trustworthiness, great customer care, flexible payment methods and fantastic bonuses. If you put all of these things together you will generally find a poker site that stands head and shoulders above the rest.

That’s why we give you a thorough and honest review of every poker site we test. We want all of our UK players to have the best possible online poker experience and we pull no punches when it comes to sites that can’t be trusted. At the same time, we can’t speak highly enough of the sites we recommend and you’ll always know which are the best ones thanks to us.