Choose An Online Poker Room
Of course where you decide to play poker on the Internet is completely up to you, but for those of you who haven't started yet or have questions, I have put together a few of the things I do when I am trying to find a new place to play.
The first concern I have is how safe is the room I am looking at. I always try to play at rooms that have plenty of players. My reasoning is that the way a poker room makes money is by players playing, so a room with many players will stand to lose much more by not keeping their players safe than they could possibly gain by doing anything questionable.
For a room to pass the first inspection, they should have at least 2,000 players online most of the time. Then I will do a quick search online to see if many players have voiced complaints about the room. Now I realize that no matter what happens, a few people will have complaints, so just because I find a few, I don't rule a room out.
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When I am concerned is if I see many of the same complaints from many different people. This is rarely the case with the larger rooms on the Internet.
The next thing I do is download the free software and play a little bit at the play money tables to make sure I like and understand the interface.
Though I don't do this all of the time, sometimes I will contact customer support to see how fast they respond and how helpful they are.
The next thing I look at is if there is a bonus available. If there is, I always read the terms and conditions attached to the bonus to see if I am willing to meet them to clear it.
I also look at the traffic at the tables I plan to play at. There is no reason to deposit at a room to play Omaha/8 if there are no full tables, or if I want to play 5/10 Texas holdem and the highest full games are at 3/6.
The last thing I do is verifying the cash out procedure before depositing. I want to know how long it will take to withdraw my winnings and if there are any special or unique requirements. The time for a surprise is before I deposit, not afterward.
As I have played at more and more rooms, I have built relationships with other poker players and found places online that I can find information about poker rooms. I use both of these as resources when I am interested in a different room. There is nothing better than first hand information.
Basically choosing a poker room is about gathering as much information ahead of time as possible, and I am sure you have noticed, mostly a common sense approach. Just like at the poker table, information is power. Good luck at your new poker room.