How to Play Online Poker in 2023

This guide will provide information about playing online poker. The guide is written by our online poker experts and covers everything you need to know about playing online poker. This information will help you become a more confident and competent online poker player. Here is a list of top online poker sites ranked and reviewed by in-house OCR (OnlineCasinoReports) experts.

Top Pick
888 Poker

100% Match Bonus up to £300


New players only, T&C apply, 18+,
Payout Speed
1 - 2 Days

Excellent reputation since it was established.

Shows off its unique casino games.

Top-quality customer support.

Most withdrawals processed within 24 hours.

Instant play games available.

Great for playing on mobile.

Payment Methods
Approved Approved
bet365 Poker

Visit the site for the latest promotions

New players only, T&C apply, 18+,
Payout Speed
2 - 3 Days

Excellent reputation since it was established.

Shows off its unique casino games.

24/7 customer support in multiple languages.

Fast withdrawal processing (within 24 hours).

Instant play games available.

Great for playing on mobile.

Payment Methods
bwin Poker

100% Match Bonus up to €100

New players only, T&C apply, 18+,
Payout Speed
2 - 4 Days

Backed by land-based presence.

Cash Games available.

Customer support is available via email, live chat, and telephone.

Supports ApplePay.

Instant play games available.

Really good mobile website.

Payment Methods
Hot Hot
Payment Methods

100% Match Bonus up to $300

New players only, T&C apply, 18+,
Poker Stars
Payout Speed
2 - 4 Days
Payment Methods

150% Match Bonus up to $30


New players only, T&C apply, 18+,

In This Guide

Poker Room


Online poker is one such game category that has captured the imagination and admiration of generations. Its simple gameplay, well-structured rules set, and potential for amazing feats of skill make it one of the most popular games.

The game uses a 52-card deck of cards and a hand-rankings system. However, a combination of skill and luck makes it appealing to poker players. The outcome of a hand is entirely up to the player. It is up to the player to prove to his opponents that he has a winning hand regardless of its value.

There are many examples of players who have won large jackpots simply by out-bluffing other poker players. This is the history of poker. We cannot show you how to read other players or become a bluffer. However, we can help explain how the game works and teach you how to follow its rules.

This guide will provide you with valuable insights into how to play online poker. We'll discuss the rules, how bets are placed, and the game's flow. A list of commonly used poker terms is also available to help you understand what is being called out and what you should do if you encounter it in-game.

We also cover frequently asked questions regarding online poker to cover any gaps in the guide.

Rules of Online Poker

Online poker is not difficult to learn; it is detailed and well-structured. These are the basic rules you should remember when sitting at a table.

Learn about the Card Rankings  

The value of the cards determines the rank of poker cards. The Ace is the most valuable. From highest to lowest, the standard deck ranks as Ace, King, Queen and Jack. Then it's 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, & 2.

Memorise Poker Hand Rankings  

To win a pot of poker, you must complete the highest ranking hand possible. This ranks poker hands from strongest to weakest: Straight Flush, Four of a Kind, Full House, Flush, Straight, Three of a Kind, Two Pair, & a Pair.

How Cards Are Dealt in Poker

Some Texas Hold'em games use two hole cards, while Omaha uses four. However, the basic gameplay is the same, and the cards are dealt the same.

  •  The players are dealt their hole cards starting from the dealer's left.  
  •  The Flop, made up of three face-up community cards, is added to the middle of the table. These community cards are also known as Streets.  
  •  The Turn is the next addition to the community card deck. It is the fourth card face-up and is often referred to by the name Fourth Street.  
  •  The River is the last face-up community card to be added to the table. This card is also known by the name Fifth Street.  

Players engage in a round of betting before each Street is added to their table. They try to build the largest pot possible while trying to gauge the strength of their opponent's hands.

Making Sense of the Online Poker Betting Cycle

Poker gameplay is called an orbit. Each orbit comprises one rotation around the table, with the dealer button at the centre.

  • Starting left of the dealer is the first player to act. He or she pays the Small Blind (SB), which is the amount of money that is required before any cards can be dealt.  
  •  The Big Blind (BB) is the player to the left of the Small Blind. The Big Blind is twice the amount of the small bet, and it is paid before any cards can be dealt.  
  •  The bets are placed around the table and move to the left until it returns to the dealer (button). This completes one round or orbit.

Most tables have a dealer. However, the Big Blind (BB) and the Small Blind (SB) will move around the table so that each player gets their turn as the button.

Popular Online Poker Terms

This complete list contains the most commonly used terms in online poker.

All In - A player who feels confident they will win is going 'all in'. They place all their chips on the current hand.

Bad Beat - A player who has a strong hand early on loses to someone who relies on their cards later in the game.

Big Blind (BB) - The player who bets is the one sitting two places to the left of the dealer.

Bubble - A player who loses out on winning by one place in a poker tournament is called the Bubble.

Call - To place the minimum amount of money to remain in the game.

Check - Players who check don't raise; they simply opt to remain in the game.

Flop - The first three community cards are dealt into the centre of the table.

Flush - Holding five cards from the same suit in a poker hand.

Fold - When you decide to stop playing poker after receiving your cards. By folding, you opt out of the current hand.

Freezeout - This poker tournament does not offer any rebuys.

Full House - Holding a hand of poker that contains three cards from the same suit & one additional pair.

Gutshot - Also known as an inside straight draw, it is where you have four of five cards that are required for a straight. The value of the missing card must be within the cards you hold and cannot be added to them.

Kicker - The card decides who wins when two poker players hold equal-value poker hands.

Limp - This slang term refers to passive plays such as calling when you can effectively raise the stakes.

No Limit - This poker game allows players to place their entire stack anytime. Skilled players should only play these tables.

Nuts - It's known as getting the nuts when you have the strongest possible poker hand.

Pocket Cards - These are the cards you receive when you first enter a poker game. Hold'em will give you two cards, while Omaha will give you four. These cards are also called hole cards.

Quads - This is slang for poker players who have four of a kind or four matching cards in play.

Raising - This action increases the stakes. Other players will be forced to match it or quit the game.

Ring Game - This is a flowery name for a simple real-money poker game.

River This is the fifth and last community card that will be dealt.

Short Stack – Short-Stack refers to the player with the smallest stack of chips at the table.

Sit and Go - Otherwise known as an SNG. The game of poker starts when enough players are present at the table. Online poker routinely features popular Sit-and-Go contests.

Slow Play - Play passively when you have a winning poker hand, and increase the pot value.

Small Blind - The Small Blind (SB) is the bet the player sitting on the dealer's left must place to remain in the game.

Straight - This is a hand that contains five cards in a sequence but not the same suit. Such as 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 in the mixed suite.

Straight Flush - This online poker hand has five sequential cards of the same suit.

Trips - This slang term refers to holding three matching cards in your hand.

Turn - The Turn is the fourth community card that will be dealt in the middle of the table.

Pros & Cons

Multiple free play tables
Amazing selection of poker learning tools
It is easy to take a break if you are overwhelmed
It is easy to test multiple poker rooms
Lots of promotions for new players
It doesn't have the social aspect that live poker offers
It's easy to overspend and chase down losses
You can't read the tells of other players

Online Poker Tips

Online poker is a complex game that requires a lot of information. These five tips will help you get started and increase your chances of winning at the tables.

How to Get Started with Online Poker

Finding a reliable poker site is easy and you can play your first hand of Omaha Hi-Lo, or even Texas Hold'em in a jiffy. These valuable tips will help you ride the river like a professional within no time at all.

1 Learn About Important Hand Rankings

You should learn how to rank hands for Omaha and Texas Hold'em before you start playing at real money poker tables. Practice sites and free play tables are a good way to test your knowledge.

2 Find a Poker Room That Meets Your Needs

Find a poker site with great bonuses and all the resources and player support you need to make real money playing as enjoyable and understandable as possible. You will love playing at these poker rooms long after the bonus is over.

3 Start at a Beginner Table

To allow novice players to practice against equally-skilled poker players, we recommend that they only play at tables designed for beginners. These tables can be used to practice your skills before you start playing for real cash.

4 Track Your Playing Results

It doesn't matter if you are new to poker or an expert player. You should keep track of your results. You can track your results to help you improve your game and increase your poker skills.

5 Cash in your Poker Player Points

Many players don't realize that top poker rooms offer points for real-money stakes. These points can be used to buy poker chips, which will boost your bankroll with no additional deposit from you.

Popular Poker Variants

Online gamblers love card games so it's not surprising that there are many poker games to choose from. These are the top online poker games and what makes them unique.

Texas Hold'em Poker

Texas Hold'em poker is the most popular form of poker. This poker variant forms the basis of all other online poker games. Players must create the highest ranking 5-card hand possible using their hole cards as well as the community cards. The entire pot is won by the highest-ranking hand.

Omaha Poker

Omaha poker is a hugely popular variant of Hold'em, where players use the same hand ranking to determine who wins. There is a significant difference: Each player gets four hole cards. Players can only use two of them together with three community cards to make a winning hand. Omaha Hi is a game where the strongest hands win. The prize pool in Omaha Hi-Lo is split between the weakest and strongest hands at the end.

Stud Poker

Stud Poker does not offer secret hole cards (face-down cards), but players are dealt a variety of face-up and face-down cards. Players make their bets based on the information they have gathered by looking at the up cards of their opponents. Each player will be dealt three face-up cards as well as a final face-down card over the next few rounds. After the betting has ended, the players' hands will be revealed, and the strongest Hold ’em hand wins.

Draw Poker

Draw poker games like 2-7 Triple Draw, 5-Card Draw and 7-Card Draw let players increase the strength of their hole cards by replacing them with face-down cards from the deck of cards. These games don't use community cards, as players can hold or replace cards in order to win the poker games.

Short-Deck Poker

Short Deck Poker, a variant of Hold'em, is where the fives, sixes, sevens, eights, and nines are eliminated from the deck of cards. The game uses a 26-card deck. However, the standard Texas Hold'em rules apply to all other aspects of this particular poker game.


HORSE combines the rules and gameplay of many poker variants to create a new game. A game of HORSE is a one-round round of Hold’em, Omaha Razz, Stud Hi, Stud Hi, and Stud Hi-Lo.

Razz Poker

In terms of its basic concept, Razz is simply another Stud Poker game. The game is still interesting, however, because the goal of Razz is to win the lowest-ranking hand rather than trying for the highest-value hand.


Yes, all reputable online poker rooms have been licensed and regulated. Authorities include the MGA, GBGC, Alderney Gambling Control Commission, and others.

They aren't. The results of poker games are reviewed by gambling regulators and other watchdog organisations to ensure fairness and accuracy.

Yes, you certainly can. Many poker sites online offer tournaments and free-to-play tables. This is a great way to start learning the game of poker.

Absolutely! All of the sites recommended by us offer real-money poker games to legal-age players.

The rake is the fee the poker room charges for each pot. Rake is the only way that the site can make money. Player losses are paid to the winner player and not to the house, as in an online casino.

All of our recommended online poker rooms offer mobile poker.

All of the websites we recommend work well on iPhones. It is up to you to choose the right poker room for you.

No. Many online poker rooms accept VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover etcetera. But e-Wallets, Bank Transfers, and cryptocurrency are also available.

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