Over the past year, we’ve all seen less of friends and family with social events such as getting together to play poker with friends, prohibited. Many poker players have moved online to play but playing against anonymous people over the internet doesn’t have the same appeal to the more casual players.
However, you may not know that some poker sites allow you to set up private poker tournaments and poker leagues. You can add your friends to so that you essentially create a private poker club. This means that you can play poker online with friends from the comfort of your own home for stakes and buy-ins of your choice.
Some players who have adopted this approach have even set up Google Meets, Teams or Zoom calls so that participants can interact whilst playing at their private tables. Below, we have listed the best casino sites to play texas holdem online with your friends and family.
Pokerstars (Pokerstars Home Games)
Pokerstars was launched in 2001 and is one of the biggest and most popular online poker sites. The brand also offers an online casino and sportsbook which were launched at a later date.
Pokerstars allows customers to set up private poker tables and leagues via ‘Pokerstars Home Games’ which in our opinion, is the best option available to do so. With Pokerstars Home Games, you can invite players to join your poker club. You can set up private tournaments, set the buy-ins and speed of blinds, record player statistics and much more.
Pokerstars Home Games is only available on the desktop versionof the product so you will have to download the standard Pokerstars software to your PC or laptop to play. Once it’s downloaded, load the software and click on:
More > Create a Poker Club
This will allow you to set up your private poker club and get an invite link which you can send to friends or family to join. You’re allowed up to 501 members in your club which is more than enough for most people. Once your club has been set up, you can schedule new tournaments. There are various options to choose from which allow you to customise the game such as start time, buy-in, blind speed, rebuys and game type.
Players who finish in money positions at the end of the game or tournament will have the fund automatically credited into their Pokerstars accounts. League positions are displayed after each game for which players can set up their own season-long prizes if they wish
888 Poker (Play With Friends)
888 Poker is another poker site that allows you to set up private poker games. It works very similarly to Pokerstars.
After downloading the 888 Poker software, log into your account can click on ‘Play With Friends’. You can then set up a new private game or tournament which you can invite others to. Again, there are several customisable options such as setting the number of seats at the table, buy-ins, start time/date, prize pool structure, rebuys, player action time and more.
After setting up your game, you’ll be given an invite link that you can share with others that you’d like to join.
Both Pokerstars and 888Poker are reputable poker sites with decades of experience in the industry. Their unique ‘play with friends’ features are perfect for when you and others are unable to get together for a game of poker in person.
There you have it, private poker tournaments in a nutshell and how to set them up on two of the most popular online poker sites.
Everywhere you turn there is a social media platform pumping out information. It is no longer just a tool for social influencers to plug products, it’s spanning practically every industry with various motivations. The online gambling industry is no different in this respect, offering lots of useful information to you. In this article I’m going to share a few ways you can take advantage of social media to improve your odds of winning when gambling online.
Twitter for News
One of the few platforms we use, Twitter is a great way to notify followers of news. We regularly share our latest article and provide snippets of what they are about. Twitter is restrictive in tips and advice due to the character count rules. However, fields like sports betting offer some free tips without issues and live casino online sites offer bonus information too.
Overall, Twitter is easy to access, free and simple to use. If you don’t have an account yet, we recommend you sign up and follow your favourite websites. Most reputable gambling sites have a Twitter account setup.
YouTube for Guides
My favourite social media platform of all, YouTube is just number one for convenience. There’s something about video that trumps other forms of learning. There are hundreds of awesome channels providing helpful video content on gambling. The best part is that there’s something for everyone. Whether you’re beginner, intermediate or advanced, you can usually find what you’re looking for.
YouTube is fantastic for basic guides as the creators offer visual aids that provides the viewer with something more tangible than simply reading. I know some people prefer to learn important concepts by reading or experience but videos can stimulate the mind and tap into our consciousness easily.
If you are a regular user of YouTube and considering a new form of gambling, search for a guide first. We recommend you pay attention to the channels stats. If the channel is old with no content in years and few subscribers, it’s unlikely to be offering new and relevant information. You are more likely to get great content from a channel that regularly produces content and has loads of subscribers. It’s an indication they are producing fresh and helpful content.
Twitch for Interaction
Twitch is a bit like marmite, you either love it or hate it. It offers random people the opportunity to stream their gaming, this extends to online gambling too. There’s definitely value as you can interact with the streamer, asking questions and getting feedback quickly. It’s popularity has grown massively in recent years with some streamers getting incredible numbers watching them when they play. This means you can watch and listen to someone gamble for free and potentially gain insights that would cost you money to learn yourself.
There is an obvious drawback with Twitch that we must highlight. Twitch has huge numbers of people streaming but there’s no criteria they need to record. Literally anyone can setup a channel and try to generate interest. So, you need to take advice with a pinch of salt. Don’t get carried away with what you’re watching a random do online. There’s a small percentage that are offering a great service but the majority are not. Most experts don’t give away their tips for free. After all, you don’t spend years learning a craft then share it our for nothing do you? Sure, some Twitch users make money but the vast majority are doing it for fun.
Social Media Online Gambling Conclusion
As you can see, there are plenty of benefits to using social media for your online gambling. You can take advantage of bonuses, learn new games, get free tips, and keep up with the latest news. The social media platforms are free to sign up and only take a few minutes. Why not start by signing up to ours here.
Bitcoin has continued to attract immense interest this year. With all the buzz around the price of 1 bitcoin and figureheads like Elon Musk weighing in, it’s no surprise that casinos have grown to love bitcoin.
Bitcoin casinos are any casino you find online that accepts bitcoin or another cryptocurrency instead of the local currency. It’s a smart move to accept BTC as it caters to the recreational gambler who may have money tied up in bitcoin. In this post I’m going to share a little bit of news and hopefully some insight on bitcoin casinos in 2021.
Why Operators Love Bitcoin
The online casinos will be loving the boom in cryptocurrency. They are reaping the benefits for one simple reason – no bank fees.It doesn’t matter if you’re depositing or cashing off, no bank or admin fees whatsoever with bitcoin. When you consider the volume that online casinos deal with, to wipe them out through a different payment method is a huge deal.
Operators will also be loving the new registrations coming from bitcoin investors new to online gambling. Bitcoin is not accepted in all parts of the economy yet. Individuals with bitcoin are still a little restricted in where they can use it but online casinos are (with open arms). It’s quite likely that anyone who took a shot on bitcoin will enjoy the potential to win from online gambling.
It’s too early to say if this cost-saving is benefitting punters or not. In theory, the operators could now offer more lucrative bonuses and incentives for players to sign up. Or, they might use it for advertising or just retain their profits. I haven’t found a conclusive answer to this question but either way, the operators will be happy they aren’t forking out millions to banks.
Why Gamblers Prefer Bitcoin
Bitcoin is a universal currency that makes no distinction between Canadian, Aussie, German or Brit. I think this commonality is one reason why gamblers love to use cryptocurrency. It’s also why brand-new casinos are opening with Bitcoin as their primary selling point. Websites like new-casinos.ca highlight all the new casinos in Canada and it’s amazing to see how many are around today.
One of the biggest reasons for gamblers using it has to be the privacy factor. Bitcoin casinos allow players to keep their details private. Most casinos only ask for an email address to register and deposit and some only request ID when you want to cash out. That’s very appealing as you no longer need to provide name, address, date of birth and more.
I think most gamblers like to keep their gambling to themselves. It’s not only those with problems that keep gambling private. There are many professionals that keep their results to themselves. They don’t want to see it on their bank statements. In today’s “big brother” society, keeping prying eyes away from our affairs is no bad thing so it’s understandable why gamblers enjoy the privacy that bitcoin casinos offer.
Constant Bitcoin News
Bitcoin casinos are thriving from the trending Bitcoin news. It’s in inescapable and shows no signs of dying down. I think Bitcoin will be here for a long time to come. With everything in the 21st century moving to a digital platform it’s perfect for all parties. Operators make more profits and punters love the convenience, privacy and speed it affords.
As long as bitcoin is trending and, in the news, more people will see it’s value for online activities and particularly gambling. Anything that boosts the poker industry and gambling industry in general can be good but as always, we need to tread carefully too. The price of bitcoin is prone to fluctuating regularly so a small disclaimer to be cautious and gamble responsibly.
One of the best things about online gambling is the fact that it is accessible almost everywhere. The notion of having poker available at your fingertips excites poker fans worldwide, however many US states have in place restrictions to playing poker online. This is why having a VPN and knowing how to use it is useful. If you are a true poker fan, and want to know how to access poker from countries where gambling is illegal, continue reading.
To get you started playing, you need to have a VPN installed on your gaming device (desktop, mobile, tablet). The good news is, the cost of a VPN for a whole year subscription is relatively cheap. Once you purchase the VPN package, you can use it on all your gaming platforms via the same account.
If we had to suggest a VPN, we’d say that ExpressVpn or SurfShark would be a good place to start. The purchase will only set you back a couple of dollars max, so no issues there. Once you make the purchase, you will need to make sure to adjust the VPN settings, so that your desktop would be able to use the VPN service. Simply choose a server you would like to join, anywhere around the globe, and hit the join button. Once the green light appears, it means that you are connected to the specific country server that you have chosen.
Since you are here, most probably you would like to get access to a gambling site that needs some help to reach. This is why I’m writing about and this is why it would be useful to give you some information on VPNs. Choosing your VPN is an integral part of a successful gaming experience.
Why a VPN?
Just because you read about VPNs, it does not necessarily mean that you need one. If you do need a VPN, there are tons out there to choose from. Start by reading some reviews from other people that downloaded would be a good start. How effective was the VPN? Was there a long waiting time to connect to the VPN? Did other players / users get disconnected when using a specific VPN service? When you are reading the reviews on different VPN offers, these are the questions that you need answered.
So, let’s now understand what a VPN does. The VPN is a Virtual Private Network, and is used to help you access sites that your location does not allow you to. It will keep your browsing information and also your current location as private, so that is a plus to know that you are safe 100% using a VPN service. Just keep in mind that using a VPN has pros and cons, so you need to evaluate if you truly need a VPN before using one.
How does a VPN work?
A VPN service has a very simplistic way in how it operates. Once you settle on a location server, and hit the ‘ Join Server’ button, all your browsing information and location will be connected to another server. In theory, this means that all your information will be sent to this new server.
Once you click on that specific server, you can access any site that accepts visitors from that location. For example, you could be residing in Switzerland, yet accessing a VPN server in New York. Choose any location you want and just connect. Basically, the VPN operates in a way that will stop the data shared between your phone / laptop and the specific server. Your physical location will be hidden when connecting to a VPN server, any server.
Why use a VPN when you are playing online poker?
If the specific site that you have registered at allows players from your country to play, there is no need for you to use a VPN, however when playing online poker, VPN does come handy sometimes. Let’s list some pros and cons and see how it could benefit you in the end.
We all know that security is key when you are gambling online and using your bank information. Sometimes you would need to use a specific e-wallet and you would need your private information safe. Using a VPN will allow you to keep all your personal information private, including financial and account information. Using a VPN will create a shield wall between an unsecured server getting access to your information. Hence in this case, the VPN would offer you added security to all your data and transactions.
When you login to the internet, some of your information is transmitted, like it or not. Your IP address is available to everyone with some skill to access and even your location via that. If you opt to use a VPN service, there is a small element of your persona that stays hidden. You will have a new IP address once you connect to the server VPN, and this offers an extra added layer of privacy. If extra privacy is what you crave online, a VPN is a must.
Way around laws and regulations
If you are looking to access online poker, and you are located in countries where gambling is illegal, a VPN would be a good way to bend the system. Some states across the United States and also countries across Europe have limited access to gambling websites, especially the ones that offer online poker. If you want to access the sites, you can. All you need to do is access the VPN via a server where gambling is allowed and legal. Once that is done, you will be given the extra green light you crave to access the site.
Types of VPNs available in the market?
Now that we understand that a VPN is needed to have security, protection and also access to gambling sites, the next question to get answered is what type of VPN to go for. If you google free VPN, you will find many sites that offer you VPN, with no payment needed. Other sites would ask you for an annual subscription. So, what is the main difference between a paid vpn and a free one?
The Free VPN does not need much introduction, and once you download the application on your device, you will not be asked for a payment. Here you will not get much perks, just the basic stuff that sometimes is irrelevant to your gaming needs. Unfortunately, using a free VPN, your data might get sold by the app. This might be a potential risk to your online security. Also, free VPNs offer limited access to a limited number of servers worldwide.
The paid VPNs are normally bound with a monthly or an annual subscription fee that you would need to pay for before using the service. You can choose between 1 month and a year, and some VPNs also offer you a trial period so that you can test the service. Here you get better layers of security for your online persona, plus you have access to a wider selection of servers. Apart from this, if you get stuck, there is always a CS team on hand with a paid VPN service.
You need to make a list of the pros and cons for you purchasing a VPN or not. Do you need that added security? And if you are needing a VPN to access a gambling site? Do some research, and check out the best option for you.
Are there any consequences to using a VPN?
Rules and laws are there, and they are there for people across the globe to follow. Although sometimes we do not agree that some countries do not allow gambling, it is a fact, and going ahead could lead to some serious implications. If caught gambling in a state or a country where gambling is a no-go, you could face fines and even higher legal consequences.
Nowadays many gambling sites have powerful tools that they can use to surpass VPNs and get access to identifying potential fraudulent players. So, in truth, using a VPN is not always 100% safe as you might have thought in the beginning. And just to give you the heads up, casinos and gambling sites are obliged to tackle and report any misdoings, or they too might get fined heavily. Also, you will be banned from using that specific site in the future.
Using a VPN to access and play for real money at an online gambling site might be tempting, but you need to ask yourself if the risk is even worth taking?
Which VPN is worth it?
Now that you have decided whether VPN is needed or not, we can have a look at providers out there. The good, the bad and the ugly. But first, lets look at the key elements.
To start off, you need to check your bankroll, and see what is the budget that you have in terms of buying your VPN service. If you do some research and browse the available options, you will find that there are some decent VPNs out there which you can buy for a decent $100 and sometimes less. For such a VPN, you will have available more servers to choose from, plus more security, hence peace of mind.
When reading about VPNs make sure that you reach out to the ones that cater for your device. You might be using Microsoft, Linux or even Mac. Make sure that the service that you settle on will be ok with your operating system. Whilst some can be integrated, some cannot and are not supported.
Server availability plays a big role in the VPN that you choose. Before opting for a specific VPN, check that the VPN has the servers that you are looking for. It would also be wise to check the gambling site, and make sure that they accept players from servers available on the VPN.
Review and Feedback
One thing that we cannot stress enough about is the research that you need to do. When accessing VPN sites, read the reviews of what other VPN users wrote about the site. Was that a good review or was it a bad one? We also suggest that you check other independent and comparison sites for VPNs to and collect all the info you need to make a wise decision.
We have done some digging for you in terms of VPNs and below are some of the best suggestions out there.
We love the name of this VPN, it gives us the feeling of invisibility and that extra security needed. Here you can pay around $5 monthly and have accessibility to over 6,000 servers in more than 112 places worldwide. This VPN is quite cheap, but offers one of the best services out there.
This VPN is quite popular with VPN users and grants you a wider access to locations compared to other VPNs. Here you pay around $100 via an annual subscription, that grants you access to 160 locations. Deemed as one of the most trustworthy VPNs by many users.
Norton Secure VPN
Norton, the same company that gives us the antivirus software, also offers a VON service. Quite reasonably priced at less than $40 for an annual fee, here you get access to 1500 servers that are located in 73 cities across the globe. You also get a 24/7 CS team that is ready to help you with any VPN questions.
There is a specific reason that VPN users enjoy this VPN. The service offers you VPN, coupled with ad-blocking and tracker blocking features. All of this will set you back a 100$ for a whole year, which in our humble opinion, is worth every penny. You also get access to 1,000 servers spread across 60 locations.
How to change your settings to accommodate your VPN
Now that you have managed to purchase the VPN and downloaded it successfully onto your system, you would need some tech magic to make it work flawlessly. Some VPNs will have this pre-configured with the app, so no work is needed there.
If you need to amend your setting, worry not as the process is quite simple and straightforward. You start by filling out the server and the host information, here you might be asked to enter your password and username too. If you need to continue configuring the VPN service, do not just press yes and there. Have a look below:
Automatic or Manual Setup – You can use your VPN service at all times that you are using the device, or you can use it when needed. Let’s say for example you are using your desktop to do some work, the VPN can be turned off, and you can switch it on by clicking the connect button when needed. Make sure it is on when you are playing online poker.
Unsecured VPN Connections – A VPN that is operational on your device will most of the time not allow you to use any unsecured internet connections. This means that you cannot be outside joining a free Wi-Fi and try to join a VPN. When using your VPN service, you need to be connected to a secured network.
Selecting Servers – You can choose your servers according to your liking and save these also. The VPN would simply look at your favorite servers and also connect your automatically. This will save you some time.
Connecting to the server
You are now one step closer to playing online poker. One last step and you and in and hitting the poker tables. Before you so do, there are some last bits to consider to keep yourself safe and also happy playing.
The gambling laws saga
Well, if you are here, it means that you want to play poker at a site that does not host any players from your country. However, some knowledge to which states allow online poker would be good. Once you understand which servers’ locations will accept players, you can connect. E.g. – You might need to connect to a server in New Jersey or Nevada. Some research will definitely help.
Imagine you are playing online poker, and you land that 3 Aces. You have a good hand, and the odds are very much in your favour for winning the hand. As soon as you want to go all in, you lose connection to the server. How bad would that be? Very! Make sure that the server that you connect to has a good speed and will keep you in the game.
Connecting to servers that are not located in your hometown would be the best option, or at least, choose one that allows gambling to happen. If you connect to a server where gambling is illegal, you cannot play your beloved online poker games.
Your internet connection also plays a big part on how the VPN will work. Make sure that you are connected to a secure network and that all your internet bars are happily filled.
Now that you are all set with your VPN, you have access to playing online poker via your gaming devices. Be sure that you have listed all your pros and cons, and you are sure that you are happy to go ahead. Again, the pros and cons list is a must, especially when we are talking about laws and regulations being involved.
Settle on your VPN partner and download the application. Make sure that the VPN that you opt for has countries and state servers that allows gambling, and accepts players. Next you need to adjust your device settings to configure the VPN and make it operational. And finally, choose the server that will grant you access to the online poker site.
Most poker players have several other interests around gambling. I know a lot of live poker players can’t help but try the blackjack tables or a flutter on roulette but sports betting is possibly the best alternative to poker. Why? Well, there’s skills a winning poker player can use to give them a better chance in the long run. In this article I’m going to share a few. If you already possess them perhaps you will give sports betting a try too.
Any form of gambling has a mental aspect we can’t ignore. Having a thick skin and an ability to handle losses well is a trademark among professional poker players. This toughness will put you in good stead when trying other gambling forms like sports betting. Being strong mentally is a requirement as it will prevent you from making foolish bets. You know the types I mean, haphazard bets that are long shots and for more of your bankroll than you should really be betting.
Recognizing a Good Bet
Decent poker players know the importance of betting and what it accomplishes. They recognise what a solid bet is, whether it’s for bluffing or value, they appreciate what a bet does. Being able to see a good bet i.e., favourable odds, is what might separate you from the millions of gamblers who regularly lose. This ability to recognise the positive odds and more importantly, take advantage is essential to winning really.
Taking Advantage of Resources
All the best poker players are using tools and resources to maximise their win rate. They’re not resting on their laurels or just assuming they have the game solved. Any poker player not making use of some accessible resources are missing a big part of what winning poker is about in the 2020s. Like online poker, sports betting has resources to help gamblers improve their odds. A poker player trying sports betting will almost certainly look at expert tipping sites. These sites are proficient in knowing the best odds around and where the best bets are on a given day.
In order to win consistently and become expert in gambling, you need to think forward and of the long term. Poker players do this all the time. When facing a bet on the river and considering if it’s profitable, they are thinking of the long term i.e. Is calling this bet profitable in the long run? This knack for ignoring the immediate consequence and focusing on the long term is a great skill to possess. Transferring it to sports betting is fantastic and you won’t fixate on the short-term fluctuations in variance.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons for serious poker players give sports betting a shot. If you are tough mentally, know a good bet when you see one, are regularly taking advantage of available tools and think for the long term – you’re on the right track for winning at sports better. I recommend you stick with sports you know well first and start of small too. As always, gamble sensibly and use cautious bankroll management.
In recent years there has been an increased movement of poker sites opposing the use of HUDs (heads up displays). This has been met with opposition from grinders and the much of the poker community. The HUD is an essential tool for a regular. When playing multi-tabling, the HUD reveals facts about opponents that the naked eye cannot possibly detect if someone is playing lots of tables.
Poker HUDs are not “bad”
First of all, let me preface my argument by saying HUDs are not inherently bad. If the player pool was infinite and recreational players didn’t care, I’d be pro HUDs. They’re an awesome tool for winning players to use. However, there’s more to it than that. I am interested in the poker industry thriving, traffic increasing, prize-pools high and recreational players at least having a decent time. I think this is more likely to occur if HUDs were not permitted.
Unfair playing field
The HUD gives the better poker player an even-greater edge than they already have. The edge is primarily on those players who don’t know of a HUDs existence or are playing on a device that doesn’t even facilitate the use of a HUD. How big is the edge? Pretty big! If we assume that most people using a HUD are at least semi-serious, they are likely to have a strategical edge on their opponents anyway, now they have even more with instant access to relevant stats.
So, why does this matter? The poker industry is not just for those that win regularly is it? It’s for the weekend players too, those that want to have fun. This pool of players is occupied by many that are long-term losers. That’s not a dig at anyone who loses. For someone to win, someone has to lose… These players won’t want to play if they are being completely beaten up on. If you play squash for fun once a week with someone 10x better, would you want to return? What if that player was not only technically better but also had better racket and trainers? How about if you play someone similar level or perhaps a little better? You’ll probably return right? It’s enjoyable yet challenging.
The online poker sites recognise they need to cater to social players just as much as grinders and have started fighting back in recent years. I am definitely in the pro ban HUD. The reason is simple, a good poker player can win without a HUD and there should be more money available and easier games around if HUDs are banned.
Mobile players at huge disadvantage
Playing poker on mobile has became a huge thing in recent years. All the major sites have an app that allows you to play online poker within moments. This has been a great way to bring in new players who wouldn’t otherwise play poker. Whether they know it or not, app users are at a huge disadvantage to a grinder on a desktop. Why? Apps do not allow for a HUD to run. You only have the your eyes and memory to rely on. Worse than that, if you play a couple of tables on an app, you can’t even watch both tables as the action flips between the two.
In a game where information is power, the desktop user with a HUD is going to dominate a similar level player on an app, against a weaker player they are just destroying them. Everyone was a “fish” or “donkey” at some point in their poker journey but the odds were not stacked up like this in the early poker days. If you did get pounded on every session, you might have quit before you really started.
What are poker sites doing about HUDs?
There’s an inconsistency across the poker sites at the moment. Some sites are banning use of HUD completely. Sites like Unibet have a couple of effective deterrents. One way of preventing HUD usage is the identities and avatars that can be changed at will. There is no limit to how often you can change them. They take a hard stance on HUD developers saying Unibet won’t permit any HUD software at all. Furthermore, anyone caught trying to use a HUD will be banned outright. They are a site clearly dedicated to recreational players.
Other sites like Pokerstars are trying a soft approach. They clearly don’t want to upset their grinders. This is the biggest site in the world and they are aware any strong action they take will be met with criticism. As such, their permitted software is almost as long as their prohibited! See below for software that can be used on Pokerstars.
What is the future of poker HUDs?
It’s hard to predict how long poker HUDs will be around for. Look, they’re a fantastic tool and significantly help a player’s ROI if used correctly. If you are interested in poker training, I would recommend using poker software to increase your edge. But, that doesn’t mean it’s great for the online poker industry overall.
I imagine the clampdown on HUDs will continue in the future. As recreational players become more and more familiar with their existence, player retention will drop at sites. The poker sites will have no choice but to meet the demand of their customers which will mean taking a tough stance on HUD software.
Just as the strategy side of online poker is continuously evolving, so is the technical and software associated with it. As long as some sites permit the use of HUDs there will still be a demand for them. The online poker professionals will worry that their edge will diminish once the HUD is banned. But the increase in traffic, fishes and cash injection into the community will cover this. A decent win-rate will still be attainable as the playing field will be levelled, they may not be able to use HUDs against opponents, but opponents can’t use it against them either.
I want to conclude by saying whilst poker software is permitted on most sites, you absolutely have every right to use them to your advantage. My position on HUDs is not a criticism of them or their developers. They’ve helped make players earn lots of money. If you want to see our recommended poker software, click below.
I’ve never been a lover of online casino games. As someone that found poker before any other gambling game, I have been accustomed to complexity and strategy. The other casino games never had the same appeal to me. Countless times in casinos I’ve seen very strong poker players have a penchant for other games like slots, blackjack and roulette. But what is it about the other games that poker players love? I will try to answer that mystery in this article.
Stress relief and relaxation
As stated before, I used to see poker players spend time at roulette and blackjack tables. The house loves a tournament break as many poker players flock to the tables to wager. I get the feeling a lot of poker players do this for stress relief. Poker playing is a mentally and physically exhausting activity. They may see other casino games as a form of stress relief and a way to relax. After all, if they’re wagering small amounts, what’s the harm? They may take their poker stress out on the blackjack table. Better to avoid tilting at the poker table and gamble a few quid at the blackjack instead perhaps? If a poker player gets bluffed out of a big pot, they may relieve some stress by betting on roulette for a few minutes instead of blowing up on at the poker table.
Flexible banking options
If you look at any online casino, they all have countless options to deposit and cash out. To poker players who have money here there and everywhere, it’s an appealing way to gamble. Most online casinos accept PayPal, Bitcoin and other crypto-currency so it’s very easy to get money to and from them. I remember years ago you had to have credit card or Neteller otherwise you couldn’t get money online. Those days are long gone now!
Poker players don’t often get the opportunity to gamble for free. Ok, you can try a freeroll but it takes hours and you can’t win much. Unlike poker sites who seldom offer a no deposit bonus, most casinos online offer a bonus simply for registering. Naturally, there are terms and conditions and you need to wager a certain amount to qualify for withdrawal but it’s still free. This is definitely reason poker players love online casinos. A quick google search or checking out a review site like veritop.com is all that is needed to find sites that offer lucrative bonuses.
Casino games are easy to play
With no disrespect to casino aficionados, the other casino games are very simple to play aren’t they? It requires practically no input from the player. The rules are usually basic and can be learnt in a matter of minutes. This accessibility has got to be a big factor for a poker player giving most games a try.
Unlike poker that is layered and can take years to master, casino games like slots or craps can be understood and played in minutes. This must be a nice respite for a poker player that doesn’t have to worry about learning strategy, reading books or investing in poker training!
They love to gamble…
Finally, many poker players just love to gamble. This is evident through the table chat you casually hear, the wagers they make and even the way they play Texas Hold’em. A spewy LAG poker player is almost certainly more likely to love the other gambling forms. There’s nothing wrong with this, the other casino games provide fun, adrenaline and a nice break from poker.
Poker comes in many forms and one that is growing in popularity is Irish Poker. It’s unique mix of Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha that entices players from both variants to give it a try. It affords the complex strategy of Texas Hold’em with the ability to play more hands like in Pot Limit Omaha. In this article, I’m going to explain the rules and offer a few tips on how to play Irish Poker.
How to Play Irish Poker
Irish Poker begins the same way as Pot Limit Omaha. Every player at the table is dealt four holecards, face down that you not be revealed to anyone else. There are the same small and big blinds posted and action proceeds left of the big blind i.e. under the gun.
Here’s where it gets interesting… After the dealer has dealt the flop, betting continues, except, after the betting is complete on the flop players are required to discard two of their holecards. Action proceeds the rest of the hand exactly like Texas Hold’em. So at the river, you can use two, one or none of your holecards to make the best possible five card hand.
Irish Poker Strategy
Like any form of poker, one of the most important pieces of strategy involves in hand selection. Irish poker is no different. You can get wrapped up playing every hand and blinding down. Instead, try to stick with playing the more premium hands. After all, you’ll be playing most of the rounds with two hole cards, just like Texas Hold’em so you can’t go crazy pre-flop. You may be asking “what does a strong hand look like in Irish Poker?”. The groups below are a good starting point.
Double Big Pairs
These are great for obvious reasons; you can make top set if you connect and you’re likely to have overpair to the board.
It’s much better to have two shots at potential flushes than one isn’t it? Double suited holdings are great as you’re not eating into your outs. These hands are even better if you can have the ace of the suit so you can make the nut flush.
These are four cards in sequential order and make for amazing playability. These hand types give so many options are increase your chances of connecting on the flop.
Big Pair & Connectors
These hands give you two shots at the flop, you’re either hoping to hit the top set or a made hand like a straight.
Hands to Avoid in Irish Poker
The obvious hands to avoid are 3 of a kind in your hand, 3 or more of one suit and small pairs. These are trouble hands as they are harming your odds or likely to make a hand that is second best to someone else.
What Cards do I Discard?
There is no hard and fast rule to deciding what cards to discard in Irish Poker. It is completely dependent on the flop texture, your opponents actions and your cards.
You need to be wary of what is going on. If there is lots of betting and you’re only holding a one pair hand, you are very likely beat or against someone holding a powerful draw.
If you’ve missed any draws on the flop and there is little action, it’s best to hold on with your stronger, made hand. This will be top pair and your best possible kicker. There’s no use holding on to two cards that have missed, hoping to make some backdoor straight or flush.
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The online gambling industry soars in Australia. Wikipedia reports that over 80% of adults gamble in Australia and that it is one of the highest rates in the world. That’s unsurprising given the relaxed approach Australia took to gambling for many years. In this article, I’m going to share some insights into Australian gambling. By the end, I hope you will have a greater understanding of our Aussie friends, their laws and their gambling habits.
The Law – Interactive Gambling Act (2001)
First of all, lets’ get the legal bit out of the way. The interactive gambling act is the chief law that experts refer to when discussing gambling in Australia. The main thing to come from this bill was the prohibition of advertising real money online games to Australian residents. This was obviously a way to curb some of the problem gambling that was rising in many states. The second cause of the bill was to protect Australians; unlicensed regulated interactive gambling services must not be provided to customers in Australia.
There were quite a few games that were not eligible to Australians but innovative operators have found loopholes e.g. accepting bets over phones. The Australian government tried to resolve this by passing an amendment bill in 2016. The biggest hit from this bill amendment was the major poker sites leaving Australian market. Whilst many forms of gambling could be accessible, online poker was not. It was helped when some operators like Ignition entered the market.
In short, there is nothing for an Australian to be concerned with when gambling. It is the operators that are impacted by the laws and have to jump through hoops. Gamblers are protected by the laws and cannot be prosecuted for betting online.
Disclaimer on Gambling Laws in Australia
Australia, like the USA is a country that is regulated at lower level i.e., state or territory. There are eight territories, each of which have their own jurisdiction for gambling activities in its own area. The areas are listed below and I recommend you do some research if you live in one of the areas, to ensure you are compliant with up-to-date regulations.
New South Wales
Taxation in Australia
Like the UK tax system, Australia does not view gambling as anything but a recreational past time that involves luck. Therefore, any winnings that arise from gambling is not subject to tax. That’s pretty awesome eh? The reason they take this stance is due to the fact that gambling is not a profession, its luck based, and that the government seek to take taxes from the operators instead. For astute Australians who regularly win at gambling, this is great news.
Favourite Australian Online Gambling Game
Without doubt, slot machines or “pokies” are the default go to game in Australia. These games are so popular that there are laws regulating the use in some territories. It’s a massive market that generates interest from all over Australia.
The popularity of pokies is probably down to the variety of slots available. A google search shows there is literally hundreds of variations of pokies so it’s no surprise Australians love them.
Online Poker in Australia
Like USA, online poker is going through a turbulent time with Australia. Essentially, many operators don’t want to get fines or run into legal problems by operating to Australians. Whilst the law is clear and individuals are safe to bet, the operators and offshore sites are the ones that could get into trouble. This means Australians wanting to gamble online need to do due diligence and find the right sites. There are fantastic review sites that do the hard work for you like https://www.onlinecasino-australia.com/. By sticking with the best and trusted sites, you will have a better experience.
Conclusion on Online Gambling in Australia
There is no risk of fine or penalty for an Australian gambling online. Like any gambling activity, it’s important to do research, exercise bankroll management and gamble responsibly. If you do this, you will be more likely to have a fun time and hopefully win too.
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For many online poker players, the Internet is a basic need. It’s a necessity for creating accounts at new online casinos. And they need to make deposits, participate in poker tournaments and research materials to improve their skills.
In other words, taking the Internet away from an online poker player is like suspending Phil Ivey or Daniel Negreanu from Las Vegas casinos. In that regard, this focuses on the impact of reliable Internet connections when playing online poker. Ready? Let’s get started.
#1: A Smooth Gaming Experience
Playing poker using fast Internet is not only enjoyable but it also provides a smooth gaming experience. No buffering, no disconnections, time wasted—games react instantly while streaming works out smoothly. This is the experience you deserve as an online casino player.
But it can only be achieved if you have a reliable Internet connection provider. Poker, like many casino games, isn’t demanding on data. So, for you to have a smooth gaming experience, you don’t really need to pay expensive Internet plans.
A smartphone with 4G Internet connections or a computer with access to 3Mbps to 10Mbps Internet speeds can deliver a buffering-free gaming experience. In turn, you can focus on the game and how to win without worrying about disconnections from the Internet.
#2: You Can Play Poker Live
Playing poker against RNG software is great, but you get a better experience playing the game with a fellow human being. You can see one another, talk and exploit each other’s weaknesses, all while using your cubicle desktop or iPhone.
The only condition is that you have quick Internet access and an account at a live casino. Of course, take time to select a great live dealer. Winny live Casino, which provides Texas Hold’em, Three-card poker and more variations of the game, is a great candidate. It also features quick payouts, has a mobile responsive website and welcome bonuses.
With that in mind, you can’t cherish live poker unless you have fast Internet connections. Any minor disruptions can mean losing your chance to call blinds or bluff. In turn, this can lead to unnecessary losses. If the Internet disconnections are rampant, a casino could even suspend you from a game.
#3: Increases Productivity
When you think about it, there isn’t much you can do online when your Internet service provider is terrible. You focus on loading web pages while you could be worrying about winning. What’s more, you waste a lot of time as your ISP provider takes ages to open web pages.
But with reliable Internet access, you can play as many poker games as you want. Better yet, you can play your favorite games with maximum concentration, allowing you to make smart poker moves and increase your potential profits.
#4: You Can Multitask
You might think you have quick Internet connections at home until you decide to download large files while playing poker. With the addition of an app to stream music, your Internet could become too slow that you can’t achieve any of the tasks you intended.
In light of that information, quick Internet access helps you kill two birds with one stone. On the one hand, you can play Omaha or Hi-Lo at your favorite online casino. On the other, you can listen to soothing music because it increases your concentration.
Most online casinos don’t allow you to play different games at the same time, though. Otherwise, you could open multiple tabs to play slots, blackjack and poker without stretching your data traffic package.
#5: Spend Less Time at the Casinos
Casino gaming isn’t supposed to be something you do for hours. You should play poker for an hour or two when you’re in the mood and spend the rest of your day doing more productive things. Unfortunately, saving time at online casinos is easier said than done if you have poor Internet connections.
Between buffering and web pages that won’t open, you could spend a lot more time at a casino because your Internet speed is slow. This is time you could use to read a book, watch a movie or take your dog out. In other words, you can save valuable time by using fast Internet providers.
Another benefit of minimizing your time at poker sites is that it reduces the possibility of getting addicted to the game. When your Internet speed is slow, you’ll have an excuse for spending more time at the website. But if it’s fast, you spend as little time as possible gambling.
#6: Quick Banking Process
Unless your intention is to play free poker, you must deposit money at an online casino. The entire process is meant to take a couple of minutes. But if your Internet connection is poor, it could take up to half an hour. This means you can easily get frustrated and abandon the gaming process.
When you have stable Internet access, though, depositing money is a fast, stress free process. And as a result, you can save time, and enjoy poker with fewer frustrations. Withdrawing money after you win is also quicker when your Internet is quick. Otherwise, it could take days to get a payout processed if you can’t even make the request due to unstable Internet speeds.
#7: Reduces Stress
Saving time might be a good reason for upgrading your Internet package. But the main reason you deserve fast Internet is that it’s eliminates stress. This is not an opinion. A study done by tech firm Ericsson in 2016 shows that people’s heart rates rose by up to 38% when surfing the Internet through an unreliable ISP provider.
Worse, the study concluded that some people’s stress levels rose from 19% to 34% if their slow Internet began to buffer as they watched a video. For comparison, this is the amount of stress the average person gets while watching a horror movie.
Lesson learned: you can avoid stress by simply switching to an ISP provider with fast Internet. And because you can use the Internet on a lot more things than playing poker, you can enjoy your online work and social life without the stresses of slow Internet.
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