Online Poker Rules
There are games that you can play immediately without asking any questions and you’ll still come out on top just by luck. Poker is not one of them. Poker is one of the table games that is guided by a set of rules. By understanding the rules, you will be able to apply your strategies and present the winning hand at the end of the showdown or even before the end.
Even more, there are rules specific to a particular type of poker game. You need to understand the following terms about poker:
- The winning hands
- The pay table
- RTP and house edge
- The objective of the particular poker game you are playing
Irrespective of the type of poker game you choose, the aim is to get a winning hand that features a set of cards whose combination beats that of your opponents. One of the rules is that the player can decide whether to deal or hold a card after it has been dealt. This can continue for as long as possible until a winner is announced.
Poker Hand Rankings from Strongest to Weakest
Like chess, poker is a game of strategy, and understanding what matters most counts. Knowledge of the poker hand rankings will go a long way towards affecting how you play. For example, when you are dealt cards, having a picture of the rankings will influence how you deal and hold cards to form the strongest winning hand. The table below shows the poker hand rankings, from strongest to weakest.
- Royal Flush: A king, queen, ace, jack, and a 10 is a royal flush which is the strongest poker hand.
- Straight Flush: Any 5 cards of identical suits in a sequential order
- Four of a Kind: Any four cards that match numerically
- Full House: Three cards of the same kind and another pair of the same kind.
- Flush: In no particular order, any five cards of the same suit.
- Straight: In sequential order, any five cards on any suit
- Three of a Kind: Any three cards that match numerically
- Two Pair: One pair of cards with a matching rank and another pair with a matching rank
- One Pair: Three unrelated cards and one pair of cards with a matching rank
- High Card: Any other card that does not qualify in the listed categories. for example, the highest-ranking card with an ace.
What Types of Poker Can I Play Online?
Just as poker is a very popular game, some variants rank higher than others. While experienced players will already have their preferences, new players will be curious to try them out and find their new favourites. Without further ado, these are the most popular kinds of real-money poker games that you will find on most poker sites.
Arguably the most popular variant of poker games, this is a must-have for any top real-money poker site. This poker variant features four betting rounds. Pre-flop, the flop, the turn, and the river. The objective is to convince your opponent that you have the best five-card. The river betting round is the last, and after that, the players reveal their cards and the winner is announced.
Five-card poker is limited to six players, which means that more cards will go around. It starts with the dealing of the small and big blind. It is followed by 5 other cards, after which the first round is complete and players are free to compete. The player seated to the left of the big blind starts the betting action, and during this period, other players can raise, call, or fold as they please until the round ends. Five-card poker features just one drawing round, making it easy to play.
Primarily known as Omaha Hold’em, but, unlike Texas Hold’em where you get dealt two cards, you get four and you can only use two of them to make your poker hand. This particular rule is everything that makes up the game, as it affects everything, including your strategy. For example, starting with a pair of queens looks good if you are playing Texas Hold’em but doesn’t offer much value with Omaha Hi-Lo. However, the fact that the pot is divided into two (Hi/Lo) hands makes it easy to win.
The gameplay involves dealing an ante to all the participating players. Afterwards, every player is dealt two cards face down and one card face up. The player who receives the lowest card face-up plays first, and this has to be the bring-in bet. In any case, where two players have the same lowest face-up card, the suit determines which player goes first.
After the first betting round (bring-in bets), each player gets the chance to continue the hand by placing a bet or folding, after which a set of face-up cards are dealt to each player. This time, the player showing the strongest card goes first in the betting round. This trend continues until the sixth card is dealt. Once the seventh card is dealt face-down, each player will have four cards face-up and three face-down. Out of these seven cards, each player is expected to make the best five-card hand, and the strongest hand wins.
Razz is usually played along with other types of poker and is similar to seven-card poker in terms of its gameplay structure. The game begins once each player is dealt an ante, followed by two cards face-down and one card face-up. Just like in seven-card stud, the player dealt the lowest card face-up starts the first round. The rest of the gameplay is the same; however, the major difference is that this time, the player with the highest hand loses. Razz is a low ball game, so the player with the lowest hand will always lead each round of bets, and eventually the player with the lowest hand wins.
Horse is another variant of mixed poker games, and it is usually mixed with the previously mentioned types of poker. Horse is a very popular poker variant and is usually played in select tournaments like the World Series of Poker and other high stakes live games.
There is no fixed gameplay, which makes it very difficult and strictly reliant on a player’s skill and adaptability. Meanwhile, depending on the combination, the gameplay depends on the rules of each variant in the specific order of combination.
While combining gameplay can be fun and create an adventurous poker experience, it can be a nightmare for newbies and even experienced players specialising in single-game poker variants.
In this game variant, you need to have the highest hand to win against the banker. The gameplay involves dealing seven cards, split into a 2-card hand and another 5-card hand. The latter has to be higher, and if it is higher than that of the dealer, then you win. In Pai Gow Poker, a joker can be brought in for a straight or flush and can also be used as an ace. More importantly, both hands must win against the dealer. If one hand wins and the other loses, it is called a “push,” and the stake will be returned and no winner will be declared.
A standout feature of Caribbean stud poker is the fact that the play is against the dealer and not against an actual opponent. The gameplay is similar to that of 5-card poker except that the dealer must show one of his cards before the end of the gameplay. Usually, the dealer and the player are dealt 5 cards each, and the player wins 1:1 if he succeeds in beating the qualifying dealer’s hand. However, the player gets his stake back if the dealer’s hand fails to qualify.
How To Win At Poker
Poker is not a game for the uninitiated. It is completely dependent on your skills and strategies. Hence, before you start playing any of the poker variants, you must build yourself an understanding of how poker works. Each game has its own specific rules, so it is also important that you stick to what you know. Below is an overview of how to win at poker.
- Ensure that you memorize the poker hand rankings.
- Learn the rules and intricacies of the variant you’re playing.
- Bankroll management is key – bet smart and play responsibly.
If you follow these suggestions, you will have a great time playing poker at the best poker sites.
Deposit and Withdrawal Options in Poker
On most poker sites, there are different options for deposits and withdrawals. Usually, depending on the quality of the poker site, the options might vary from one to the other. Meanwhile, especially for real money poker, it is important to explore the various banking options. Usually, real-money poker sites feature the following categories of banking options:
- Mobile payments
- Bank Transfer
- Instant Bank Transfer
- Credit/Debit cards
While almost all of these options can be used for deposits, it is not the same for withdrawals. Also, deposits are almost instant, except for bank transfers. However, withdrawals, even for the fastest electronic wallets like PayPal, NETELLER, and Skrill, may take a few hours. Credit and debit cards take a lot more time, and there could also be a transaction fee. Above all, the payout speed varies depending on other inherent factors and the verification process.
Top Poker Sites for Beginners
Poker is a game for an adult audience with experience in real-money gambling. For beginners, it is expected that you stick to online poker sites that offer simple games that are suitable for beginners. This explains why games like Texas Hold‘em and No Limit Texas Hold’em are very popular because the gameplay is simple to understand, yet there is still lots of room to improve. In addition, be sure to check out sites that offer players lots of free games and poker bonuses.
Top Poker Sites for Experienced Players
Advanced poker players have no difficulty participating in high-stakes and complicated tournaments because the prize, at the end is usually higher. So, if you think you have mastered the art of playing poker and have your own working strategy and skills, the best poker sites are those that offer good competition, an extensive variation of game selections, and higher stakes tournaments.
Bonuses at Poker Casino Sites
Online poker can be a lot more fun with a bonus offer from the poker site. For a game that depends so much on your knowledge and skills, having an extra cash bonus to sharpen your skills can be worthwhile. Depending on the site, some of the bonus types include the following.
However, keep in mind that these kinds of offers usually have steep wagering requirements, which means that you will have to make bets worth several times their value to bank your winnings. We recommend thoroughly reading the terms and conditions of each offer before claiming it.
This is one of the most popular types of bonuses, and it is a must-have on any real-money gambling site. A specific poker welcome bonus means that as a new member, once you make your first deposit, you will receive a stated amount to play selected poker games. This could be a matchup bonus up to a certain percentage. For example, a match bonus of 100% means that a deposit of $50 earns you another $50, making a total of $100.
This bonus offer, just as its name implies, comes each time you reload your account. It is usually a matching bonus, which means that each time you deposit a certain amount, you will receive a little cash prize to play more games.
No deposit Bonus
Some poker sites offer new members access to a competitive poker tournament or game without making any deposits. Usually, this bonus is a small amount, but it is a chance to play for real money and win cash prizes for free. It has two drawbacks, however - they are very rare to come by and, more importantly, they have steep wagering requirements.
This bonus is usually for high rollers and existing members in a real money gambling poker site. As you continue to make more deposits and stake on more games
, you will be rewarded from time to time with some amazing rewards.
Is It Safe to Play Poker Online?
For every player out there, there are dozens of questions about whether or not it is safe to play, and it’s no wonder, because nobody wants to fall victim to scams or data leaks. Typical questions include:
- Are the games rigged or real?
- Can I withdraw my money?
- Are the rules the same with online poker?
- Can players cheat?
Because online poker is a very popular game, there is no doubt that there are lots of scam poker sites out there. Hence, while it is fair to assume that playing poker online is safe, it also depends on where you choose to play the game. We have tested each of the sites we feature here, so you can be sure that all of them are legitimate.
As already mentioned, it is important to do research when selecting real money sites. Be sure to look out for poker sites that are licenced, regulated, secure, and have a good reputation, among other things. While this verification process can be very stressful, you can trust the selection of recommended real-money gambling sites to play poker that we have listed.