UK Online Poker - Lists Best Sites in UK / GBP
There are lots of UK poker sites. Some good, some great, and others aren’t worth the crap on the bottom of my shoes. Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is finding the poker sites that are worth playing at.
However, I realize that’s easier said than done. It’s hard to tell what a poker site is like unless you’ve been playing there for awhile, or have lots of experience.
Luckily for you, we fit that criteria. We know what it’s like to play online poker, so we know what players need in a room. Security, traffic, game variety, banking options and promotions, are just a few of the things we look for, and that are the basis for our picks for the best UK poker sites. That list is below.
5 Reasons Why UK Poker Sites Are Better Than US Poker Sites
Poker players outside of the United States – namely those in the UK – have it good. They can play wherever they want. PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker, 888, Bet365; the list can go on and on.
So why do some players from the UK (and surrounding countries) choose to play at sites like Carbon Poker, BetOnline or Bovada. Sure, these sites are great in their own way, especially from the angle that they accept US players. But when compared to the sites that only international players can sign up to, they’re inferior in nearly every way. I thought I’d highlight how they’re inferior, so that you can see why and how UK players have it so good.
1. More Traffic
Poker sites open to UK players have significantly more traffic than US poker sites. PokerStars is a great example. At any given time they have 75,000 to 100,000 players. On the weekends they have upwards of 200,000, or more. Even Party Poker, one of PokerStars nearest competitors (in terms of traffic) has 20,000 players. Compare that to a US poker site that has maybe 7,500 to 10,000 players. It’s a big difference, and one that you’ll notice most if you choose to play during off peak hours, or if you like to play lesser popular games, like stud or HORSE.
More traffic also (usually) means more money for the poker site. In turn, the better cash flow will mean that players are paid quickly, there are better and more frequent promotions, and guaranteed tournaments.
2. Guaranteed Tournaments, Bigger Guarantees, More Frequent Tournaments
The tournaments available to UK players are better, too, compared to tournaments available to US players.
Need an example?
The biggest guaranteed tournament available to US players, as far as I’m aware, is $100,000. Not chump change by any means, but a drop in the bucket when compared to PokerStars Sunday Million. This has a $1 million guarantee, but frequently exceeds that. First place wins $150k or more.
But more than the size of the tournament, UK players enjoy more frequent tournaments, too. All of the major poker sites runs 10, 20, 30 or more tournaments everyday, most of which have guaranteed prize pools.
In addition to that, the majority of UK poker sites (if not all) run special seasonal tournament series, like PokerStars WCOOP, and run tournaments where it’s possible to win seats to events, such as the WSOP.
3. UK Poker Sites Have More Deposit Options
UK players have more options for deposits and withdrawals – period.
More than that, though, US poker sites accept fewer options overall, regardless of where you’re from. You might only have 5-10 options, whereas a UK poker site can have 15-20, or more. Sites like 888, Bet365, William Hill and PokerStars are all good examples of this.
Because of their size, and ease of processing transactions, you’ll find that you’ll be asked to pay few, if any fees for both deposits and withdrawals, too.
4. More (and Better) Compatibility Options
US poker sites will offer a download for Windows, and in some cases, a download for Mac users. That’s pretty much where the compatibility options end.
But not for UK players.
Options for both Windows and Mac users exist. A few sites, such as PokerStars, has a download for Mac operating systems. Other sites, like 888, William Hill and Bet365, offer an instant play version for Mac and Linux OS.
Nearly all of the major UK poker sites are compatible with mobile devices, too. With the exception of PokerStars, they let you play on your mobile device for real money. So when you stick with a UK centric poker site, you get to play poker from your home, office or wherever you may be on the go.
5. UK Poker Rooms Are Safer
To be clear, the poker sites that we recommend for US players are ‘safe.’ However, if Black Friday taught us anything, it was that these rooms can be essentially time bombs, just waiting to go off. How many of you have received your money from Full Tilt (or the US government, really)?
I haven’t either…
It’s not so much that the rooms are unsafe, just that they’re operating in an illegal and mostly unregulated environment. That puts the room, and your money, at risk, especially if the poker site doesn’t have the resources to handle such an event. Only PokerStars was able to walk away and pay their players post-Black Friday.
But if you stick to the (UK) sites we recommend, you’ll be playing at sites that either have a long positive history, lots of cash flow or have gone public and have investors, or all 3, all of which are reasons to trust these sites more than others that don’t – which include US poker sites. After all, why have your money tied up in a US site when you’re not an American?