Online Poker Room Reviews – 2022 Poker Sites Reviewed and Rated
US poker sites are a dime a dozen. The online poker market has grown considerably in the past few years, and players are spoiled for choice, thanks to an array of virtual rooms they can choose from.
This kind of diversity may sound good in theory, but that’s not necessarily the case in practice. When you look under the hood of those platforms, you’ll discover that there aren’t as many great options as you may have originally thought.
In light of this, the question arises — how can you differentiate top-performing operators from the not-so-great ones, given that they mostly offer comparable products? Unfortunately, there’s no clear-cut answer to this question because it’s a complex issue that depends on a number of factors.
But I’ve got some good news. In the following sections, I will share with you how I conduct online poker reviews. Through this process, you can identify the best poker sites.
Specifically, I’ll show you which nuances you should consider when analyzing and comparing poker sites. But before we get to the crux of the matter, I’ll reveal my top picks for the best US poker sites.
Recommended Online Poker Rooms
The competition among US poker sites is fiercer than ever before. New rooms are constantly popping up, with many of them touting great promotions and mouth-watering incentives for prospective and existing customers alike. In response to the increasing competition, established brands are upping their game as well by rolling out massive guarantees, bad beat jackpots, and rakeback deals.
Choosing a great online poker room in such a cutthroat marketplace can be a challenging task. Given the depth of good choices, narrowing them down to the perfect one can be a struggle — especially for newbies.
My list of the best US poker sites which I consider to be the best rooms to play in 2022:
- BetOnline Poker
- Ignition Poker
- Everygame Poker
- Juicy Stakes Poker
- Americas Cardroom
- Bovada Poker
- BlackChip Poker
- SportsBetting Poker
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However, if you keep things simple and follow my poker site reviews, you should be able to find your match relatively easily.
Meanwhile, make sure to check out the list of the US poker sites that I’ve selected. After reviewing an endless range of poker rooms, I’ve whittled down the selection to a handful of elite operators. The above picks represent a combination of first-hand experience and extensive analysis of key performance indicators.
How I Conduct Poker Room Reviews and Rate Brands
After years of playing poker and reviewing poker sites, I have developed a highly effective rating system. In my detailed investigation of each website, I don’t have any biases or personal preferences toward particular brands. My assessments are balanced and objective, highlighting both the good and the bad sides.
As evidenced by the numerous emails I receive from readers thanking me for helping them navigate the bustling poker scene, it is safe to say this method has been successful.
So, what are the traits that set the most elite brands apart from the herd of cookie-cutter online poker rooms? Which characteristics should you pay the most attention to? I’ll answer all these questions as I unravel my ranking methodology below.
Safety and RegulationLet me make one thing clear straight away — there are a lot of shady, possibly fraudulent poker sites you may stumble upon. Since Black Friday was so traumatic the first time around, I decided to take extra precautions and make safety a top priority in my poker sites reviews.
You need to check a few things to make sure that your chosen poker room is legit:
- License — Perhaps the most reliable way to determine if the poker site is safe is to check whether it’s licensed by a recognized entity. Licensing information is usually transparently displayed in the footer section; if it’s not there, that could be a major red flag. You should look for virtual stamps from regulators such as UK Gambling Commission, Malta Gaming Authority, Gibraltar Gambling Commission, Swedish Gambling Authority, Spanish Directorate-General for the Regulation of Gambling, Alderney Gambling Control Commission, AAMS Italy to name a few.
- Company info — Before you commit to an online poker ream, do a thorough background check on the company that runs it. This research includes looking at sister sites (if there are any) and past projects the company has worked on. A proven track record with other sites is a positive sign.
- Reputation — There is a lot of first-hand feedback that players share nowadays at gaming forums and portals, and this can give you a good idea of how an operator goes about its business. If a casino has a poor reputation for not paying players their winnings on time or if it is known for other unethical practices, it should be avoided.
- Security measures — Gambling sites are often targeted by hackers, which is unsurprising given the massive cash flow that runs through these platforms. Therefore, it is imperative that you choose a poker site with airtight security measures. It’s best to use a platform that utilizes 128- or 256-bit SSL encryption.
Bonuses and Promotions
Since most poker rooms usually copy each other’s game offers, their bonuses are probably the main point of differentiation.
Poker brands typically give massive welcome bonuses to new customers to gain an edge over their competition. The most generous sites also provide loads of other incentives for returning players, like freerolls, rakeback bonuses, and loyalty rewards.
Many players are so enticed by the prospect of getting hundreds of dollars of free cash that they overlook the fine print attached to promotional offers. However, you should always read the terms and conditions since they reveal the true value of a bonus.
Bonus size, monetary cap, and match percentage are certainly very important. Still, the caveats that accompany each promotion are even more relevant. In fact, no matter how big the bonus is, if its playthrough requirements are too high or the time limits too short, you might not be able to cash it out.
Payment Method AvailabilityThe availability of banking options varies greatly from one poker room to another. After all, if the site you’ve opted for doesn’t accept your preferred payment method, then what’s the point of playing on it?
My poker room reviews award bonus points to those operators who boast a wide variety of banking options. There should be at least several choices available, including credit/debit cards, an e-wallet service like PayPal and ideally, a cryptocurrency (Bitcoin, Ethereum, Tether or some other popular crypto). The more, the merrier!
Processing SpeedHaving to wait for an eternity to cash out your profit after just winning big at the tables can be frustrating. That’s why payout speed should be one of the primary assessment metrics.
These things can drag on for more than ten days — been there, done that. Because of this, I only play on those sites that facilitate withdrawals in a timely manner. Keep in mind — payment speeds for e-wallets and cryptos shouldn’t exceed 48 hours.
Game SelectionMost poker rooms offer a similar variety of games. The selection mostly comes down to a handful of variants — most notably, Texas Hold’em and Omaha.
In spite of this, I’m willing to bet there are some players with esoteric tastes who would like to sample something different and explore some niche options like Five-Card Draw, Razz, Stud and Chinese Poker.
Game variety is rarely discussed in online poker reviews around the web, as more attention is paid to other aspects of the site. Not on my watch.
Tournament Line-UpCash games are a lot of fun and can be very lucrative potentially — however, tournament tables will get you right into the thick of the action.
Whenever you analyze tournament schedules, you should first focus on their depth and variety. You’re more likely to find an event that suits your preferences, budget, and skill level if the tournament roster is extensive.
Also, you should look at the weekend guarantees and see how they measure up to those of competitors. Major poker rooms run massive Sunday guarantees, with more than $1 million up for grabs. Look out for flagship events — these tend to have the biggest purse.
Finally, let’s talk about betting options. Casual players will find the low-buy-in tournament sites most appealing — and if there’s a freeroll available, even better! In contrast, high-rollers prefer nosebleeds and higher-stakes events. When choosing the option that suits you best, make sure to factor in your risk aversion, budget, and skill.
TrafficMy poker room reviews are heavily influenced by traffic. In this case, the math is simple — the more traffic the site receives, the bigger the prize pools will be, and the easier it will be to find a fish to prey on.
It is generally true that top-performing poker rooms have high traffic, which is why you should consider playing in them. If there is a larger number of players, you won’t have to wait for too long for the tables to fill up on SNGs and cash games.
SoftwareWhen assessing a poker site, one of the important benchmarks is its software quality. Platforms need to be responsive and easy to use on both desktop computers and mobile devices. All the important buttons and menus need to be easily accessible on the user interface, and there should be no clutter.
Additionally, you should examine advanced functionality, such as HUDs, trackers, and similar analytic tools. Those features should be available on both the instant play site and the downloadable clients/apps.
Customer SupportGlitches and issues are almost inevitable, no matter how good and trustworthy your poker room may be. Whenever such a situation arises, you should contact customer service.
The support team should be able to resolve trivial issues quickly and provide timely assistance through a variety of contact methods. Personally, I prefer live chat for pressing matters; however, email and phone support could also be effective. Additionally, an FAQ should provide
Top 3 Poker Sites in the US
Over the course of my US market analysis, I did online poker reviews of dozens of operators. Three brands stood out in the crowd.
The site also shines in the promotions department. From its massive intro promo to refer-a-friend deals, crypto bonuses, and weekly boosts, there are a variety of promotions you can take advantage of.
Ignition also has some of the best tournaments in the business, including $2 million in weekly guarantees.
- US players allowed
- $1,000 in bonus cash for newcomers
- Friendly bonus terms
- Heavy traffic
- Bustling selection of cash games
BetOnline has improved its poker software drastically in recent years, and its client is currently hailed as one of the best in the business.
Its cash game selection is among the most diverse ones I’ve seen so far, with plenty of No Limit Hold’em and Omaha tables to choose from.
- US players accepted
- User-friendly platform
- Exceptional line-up of cash games
- 100% welcome bonus up to $3,000
- Fast payouts
The site is licensed in Curacao, which is a testament to its trustworthiness. Tournament selection includes plenty of SNGs and low-stakes events, as well as occasional freerolls.
All this makes it an excellent spot for recreational players. Everyday Poker also accepts cryptocurrencies, which is another point in its favor.
- Accepts US players
- 200% up to $1,000 welcome bonus
- Plenty of soft games
- Runs a rewarding loyalty program
All poker reviews you see on our site are conducted with the points mentioned earlier, and with utmost focus on excellency and detail. I can safely say that all experts are devoted to a thorough examination of each poker site, and only after studious observation and first-hand playing experience will they rank the best online poker rooms.
Do you think that our methods are good enough? Would you like us to focus on anything else? Make sure to post your ideas in the comments section below. We would love to hear your opinion on how we can make our review methods even better.
Why should you trust my review process?
I have been in the online poker business for at least as long as you have, and probably much longer. During that time, I gained a lot of insight into what makes a great poker room. Neither do I fabricate reviews, nor do I praise operators falsely in order to make a few extra bucks. As I’ve pointed out repeatedly throughout this article — I’m a player myself, and my objective is only to assist a fellow poker fan.
Is poker legal in the US?
Depends on the state where you live. Certain states like Delaware, Michigan, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania have launched their online poker markets and welcomed several top-tier brands. Most other jurisdictions allow players to join offshore poker platforms. It’s best to familiarize yourself with the online poker laws in your state before you get in on the action.
Can I trust new poker sites?
If it passes all of the criteria mentioned above, then yes. Just because the poker room has been launched recently, that doesn’t mean it can’t be trusted. I’ve played in several new poker rooms and rarely had any issues.
What’s the single most important criterion for rating poker rooms?
I must note the safety aspect here — everything else comes second. Even if the poker room excels in all other areas, if it isn’t trustworthy, I wouldn’t recommend it. It needs to be licensed, and it has to have a clean track record. Also, it needs to use adequate security measures for me to consider it a safe platform.
What is the best poker site?
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all poker room. What could be a great poker site for one player may not fit another one’s preferences.