California February 4, 2014 Adrian Sterne https://www.top10pokersites.net/author/adrian-sterne

Online Poker California – Best Legal CA Real Money Poker Sites in 2023

by Adrian Sterne Updated: January 27, 2023

Although California’s land-based poker scene is robust, its online counterpart still has a long way to go. You’d think the state would already have a well-developed online poker market and licensed online operators, but that’s not the case. The largest state in the US has yet to reach state-wide regulation.

With land-based casinos offering world-class poker rooms, poker is always the top-choice among gamblers.

Still, if you’re looking for more convenience, online platforms are the best solution. While we’re all waiting for native poker platforms, players can join offshore gambling platforms that cater to California residents.

Where to Play Real Money Online Poker in California

We have handpicked a range of online poker sites where we just know everyone living in California is going to be able to access and play a very large and diverse range of online Poker games, with this in mind please have a good look through the following collection of legal California online Poker sites and checkout the size of their new player sign up bonuses, they are huge!

My list of the best US poker sites which I consider to be the best rooms to play in 2023:

  1. BetOnline Poker
  2. Ignition Poker
  3. Everygame Poker
  4. Juicy Stakes Poker
  5. Americas Cardroom
  6. Bovada Poker
  7. BlackChip Poker
  8. SportsBetting Poker

100% Legal & Licensed Verified Bonus Mobile Friendly Advertiser Disclosure. Must be +18 to participate.

RankPoker RoomsBonusReview...
1.
Bonus

100% up to $1000

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • 100% First deposit bonus
  • Promo Code: NEWBOL
  • Banking through cryptocurrencies
  • Top 3 in US player traffic

Payout Speed

1-3 days

Licensed by

Panama  
2.
Bonus

100% upto $3000

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • Increased Poker Crypto Bonus $1500
  • Exclusively for US players
  • Many Payment Options
  • Rich Player Traffic

Payout Speed

1-3 days

Licensed by

Kahnawake Gaming Commission  
3.
Bonus

200% upto $1000 Welcome Bonus

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • Recreational Player Traffic
  • Get a 200% Match on Your Initial Deposit
  • Wide Tournament Selection
  • High-Quality Games

Payout Speed

1 - 5 days

Licensed by

Curacao  
4.
Bonus

200% upto $1000 Welcome Bonus

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • 200% up to $1000 poker bonus
  • Bonus code: 1000JUICY
  • High-quality software
  • Competitive poker tournaments

Payout Speed

1 - 6 days

Licensed by

Curacao  
5.
Bonus

100% upto $1000

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • VIP Loyalty Program
  • Weekly Progressive Jackpot
  • Reliable Customer Support
  • US-Friendly

Payout Speed

1-3 days

Licensed by

Malta Gaming Authority  
6.
Bonus

100% up to $500

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • Guaranteed Tournaments
  • Quick, secure payouts

Payout Speed

1-3 days

Licensed by

Malta Gaming Authority  
7.
Bonus

100% upto $1000 Welcome Bonus

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • Rich Player Traffic
  • Special Promotions
  • Get Free $1,000
  • US-Friendly

Payout Speed

2 - 5 days

Licensed by

Unknown  
8.
Bonus

100% upto $1000

(T&C apply. 18+)
Read ReviewVisit SiteDeposit Options

Features

  • Up to $1000 Sign Up Bonus
  • Promo Code: NEWSB
  • Highly Responsive Customer Support
  • Easy-To-Orient
  • Soft Competition

Payout Speed

1-3 days

Licensed by

Panama  
#1

BetOnline Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

100% up to $1000

Additional Bonus:

$100,000
in Guaranteed Tournaments

Read full review

Why We Ranked BetOnline Poker in Position 1

BetOnline has been a household name for online gambling since the early 2000s. In 2011, the company launched its very own online poker platform. It’s a legitimate operator based in Panama that has a great track record among sports bettors, casino players, and poker players alike.

Apart from its impeccable reputation, we gave BetOnline the top spot due to its excellent software client, swift deposits and withdrawals, and superior mobile software, among other things.

Pros

  • Top 5 in traffic in the US
  • Long-standing reputation
  • Smooth-running software client
  • Competitive welcome bonus
  • Solid selection of tournaments
  • Crypto-friendly

Cons

  • High fees for specific payment methods
  • Slow bank wire withdrawals

Overview

BetOnline’s ascent started during the previous decade when it launched a proprietary poker software and continued to improve it. The platform has a steady traffic flow, often ranking in the top five in the US and California. Another reason we have a favorable impression of BetOnline is the platform’s game versatility and game formats, in addition to its solid range of tournaments and special promotions.

Many players also enjoy BetOnline due to timely payments and the fact that the operator accepts an array of banking options, including plenty of altcoins. While it does not feature an app, BetOnline has one of the best mobile-friendly sites in the industry. The web page is reliable, features crisp visuals, and has excellent multi-table support.

Available Poker Games

You’ll find all evergreen poker games at BetOnline, from Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and 7-Card Stud, to rarer variants like Americana and 32-Card Draw. Limit, No Limit, and Pot Limit Hold’em and Omaha are available in a wide range of stakes. As for formats, we suggest checking out fast-fold games at lower limits and 3-player SNGs with jackpots.

Bonuses

BetOnline starts you off with a 100% welcome bonus of up to $1,000. The minimum deposit is $50, and you must use the promo code NEWBOL to unlock it. Every time you reach $50 in rake, you’ll receive a $5 portion of your bonus until you clear the whole amount. Online casino and sports betting bonuses are not valid for poker.

Meanwhile, BetOnline features a bad beat jackpot that you can win by losing a hand consisting of four deuces or better.

Customer Service

To reach customer service at BetOnline, click on the live chat icon at the bottom of each page under “Need Help?”. This is also where you’ll find details about other modes of communication, including email and phone. The site has a comprehensive help center as well, where you can access all sorts of information, including a dedicated section for poker.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

BetOnline gives you plenty of options for deposits and payouts, including credit/debit cards, several cryptocurrencies, MoneyGram, and more. The deposits are almost immediate, while withdrawals usually take 24–48 hours, after which you can expect the money to reach you shortly, depending on the method you choose.

#2

Ignition Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

100% upto $3000

Additional Bonus:

200% upto $1500
Bitcoin Bonus

Read full review

Why We Ranked Ignition Poker in Position 2

Ignition Poker is right up there with BetOnline as the best online poker platform for US players. In fact, it is the largest US online poker network by traffic, accepting players from 45 states, including California.

The convenience of playing instantly without downloading software, crypto deposits and withdrawals, a high fish rating, and a decent welcome bonus are just some of the things we like about Ignition.

Pros

  • Highest player traffic in the US
  • Instant-play option
  • Speedy deposits and withdrawals
  • Increased bonus with a crypto deposit
  • Anonymous tables
  • Very strict toward HUD usage

Cons

  • Can slow down during peak hours
  • No rakeback
  • Fees on credit card deposits

Overview

The operator’s roots can be traced back to 2004 when the platform launched under Bodog and rebranded to Ignition in 2016. The company is part of the PaiWangLuo online poker network (just like Bovada), and it’s currently licensed in Costa Rica.

Ignition checks all the right boxes of a great online poker room. It has healthy player traffic (often ranked as the best in the US), allows instant play on both desktop and mobile, accepts crypto payments, features plenty of games and interesting game modes, and hosts rewarding tournaments.

Available Poker Games

Ignition Poker offers Texas Hold’em and Omaha games with optimal limits. One of the best game modes at Ignition is Zone, which is a fun and dynamic fast-fold game that’s also ideal for clearing the bonus.

Every time you fold during Zone Poker, you’ll be moved to another table alongside five other players who folded at other tables. This is a great way to get back into the action as quickly as possible, as you won’t have to wait on other players once you fold.

Bonuses

Ignition’s standard welcome bonus for poker is 100% up to $1,000. However, if you deposit using one of the accepted cryptocurrencies, you’ll get a 150% match bonus of up to $1,500. This will also trigger the same-sized bonus for the platform’s online casino, meaning you can enjoy a total of $3,000 for poker and casino games.

Other promotions include weekly boosts, freerolls, referral bonuses, and more.

Customer Service

If you need assistance, you can navigate to Ignition’s help center, where you’ll find dozens of FAQs and articles on common issues. Under each answer, you can ask for more help, after which you’ll get an option to use the live chat, send an email, or communicate with other Ignition players via a forum. Typical live chat response times are 5–7 minutes.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

It really pays off to use cryptocurrencies when playing at Ignition Poker. Cryptos have flexible deposit and withdrawal limits, faster transaction speed, and don’t impose any fees. Other deposit options include cards and vouchers, while you can also request a check-by-courier withdrawal.

#3

Everygame Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

200% upto $1000 Welcome Bonus

Additional Bonus:

36%
Rakeback

Read full review

Why We Ranked Everygame Poker in Position 3

Everygame Poker is another solid option for Californian online poker players. The first thing you’ll notice about this poker room is that it offers a 200% welcome bonus instead of a 100% like at BetOnline and Ignition.

Other factors working in Everygame’s favor are longevity, safety, tournament selection, mobile compatibility, and instant play options.

Pros

  • Trusted and secure brand
  • Competitive welcome offer
  • Satellite tournaments for live events
  • Daily no deposit bonuses
  • Instant play on desktop and mobile
  • Suitable for casual players

Cons

  • Low traffic
  • Small tournament guarantees
  • Restrictive withdrawal policies

Overview

Everygame Poker is a prominent US-friendly poker room with over two decades of experience. Apart from poker, the operator runs an online casino and a sportsbook.

Despite being an established online poker platform, Everygame Poker often receives criticism for its outdated-looking software and low player traffic. It definitely lags behind the likes of BetOnline and Ignition poker. Still, other features such as a good set of promotions, solid tournament selection, high-level safety, an acceptable rake, and quick deposits propel it to a top-three spot.

Also, low traffic creates a beginner-friendly playfield, so if you’re just starting out in the world of online poker, Everygame might be the right choice.

Available Poker Games

Everygame Poker offers No Limit and Pot Limit Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha in usual formats, including SNGs, heads-up, multi-table, and more. Meanwhile, you can take part in Everygame’s satellite tournaments which are part of the WSOP Circuit, and qualify for live tournaments at exotic locations all over the world. There are also plenty of online-only events with lucrative prize pools.

Bonuses

The intro bonus at Everygame Poker is a 200% match deposit up to $1,000. On top of that, you’ll receive 25 free spins for a selected slot game at the operator’s online casino. There are also plenty of reload bonuses, daily no deposit bonuses, rakeback deals, and loyalty perks.

Customer Service

Selecting the Contact button on the Everygame Poker homepage will take you to the customer support section. The quickest way to reach out is by using live chat, but you can also send emails to two different addresses — one for general poker queries and the other for payments.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

You can use Visa, Mastercard, Paysafecard, and a set of e-wallets and cryptocurrencies to complete payments at Everygame Poker. The minimum deposit limits for certain methods can be a bit high, but at least they are fast and fee-free.

On the other hand, withdrawals are where Everygame can improve. Non-crypto withdrawals are prone to additional charges, and even if you use cryptos, you will meet with restrictive terms such as low withdrawal frequency (only once a week for most methods) and low maximum limits.

#4

Juicy Stakes Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

200% upto $1000 Welcome Bonus

Read full review

Why We Ranked Juicy Stakes Poker in Position 4

Juicy Stakes is almost a carbon copy of our previous choice, which is why we ranked it immediately after Everygame. This comes as no surprise considering that both poker rooms are members of the US-facing Horizon Network and are based in Curacao.

Therefore, you can expect the same as with Everygame, including a solid welcome bonus and other promotional deals, a wide range of tournaments, crypto payments, instant play options, and other perks, along with the ensuing downsides.

Pros

  • Download and instant play options
  • Great welcome bonus
  • Huge range of tournaments
  • Crypto-friendly
  • Market-leading rakeback deals
  • 100% secure

Cons

  • Non-anonymous gameplay
  • Relatively low traffic
  • Restrictive withdrawal rules

Overview

Juicy Stakes launched in 2013, and it has a Curacao license. It is a sister poker room to Everyday Poker. Both are part of the same network and share many features.

The platform regularly hosts a high number of tournaments, most notably the WSOP Circuit satellites. There are also a lot of promotions to take advantage of, a mobile-friendly site with instant play and cryptocurrency payments.

Despite being a very good poker room overall, Juicy Stakes is not that popular in California, which explains its mid-to-low traffic levels. In terms of downsides, the platform doesn’t support anonymous gameplay and could improve its withdrawal rules.

Available Poker Games

Juicy Stakes sticks to basics, offering Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and Omaha Hi/Lo. Minimum stakes start at $0.01/$0.02, going all the way up to $50/$100 for Fixed Limit Hold’em.

Satellite tournaments for live WSOP events are a great chance for you to end up in the Caribbean or other exotic locations. Online tournaments can be quite appealing, as can Daily and Depositor Freerolls, too.

Bonuses

A 100% up to $2,000 awaits all new members of Juicy Stakes. Once you deposit, you must click the bonus code button and enter 1000JUICY to redeem the offer. The bonus is released in $5 increments based on FFPs. Other promos include rakeback deals (up to 36%), reload bonuses, weekly FPP races, and more.

Customer Service

You can contact Juicy Stakes by sending them a message via live chat or email. The FAQ section is extremely helpful, letting you in on all the details surrounding payouts, withdrawal authorization, tournaments, rake, game rules, and more. The platform also plans to add phone support.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

You can deposit using credit/debit cards, Bitcoin, and a set of e-wallets. Maximum deposit limits are a bit restrictive, as only eZeeWallet allows deposits higher than $1,000. As for withdrawals, you can only use Bitcoin, bank transfers, and checks.

Bitcoin is the only method you can withdraw with and not have to pay any fees, and it’s also the fastest, with a pending time of 48 business hours.

#5

Americas Cardroom

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

100% upto $1000

Additional Bonus:

$50
Free Cash

Read full review

Why We Ranked Americas Cardroom in Position 5

Americas Cardroom is another long-standing online poker room serving a global market but primarily targeting US players. We rounded up our top five with Americas Cardroom due to it being part of the Winning Poker Network, featuring massive tournaments, accepting Bitcoin, and having a great platform overall.

Pros

  • Safe and reputable online poker room
  • Huge tournament prize pools
  • Top 3 player traffic in the US
  • Great welcome bonus
  • Reliable crypto-friendly payments
  • Unique game modes

Cons

  • Doesn’t ban HUDs
  • Doesn’t guarantee anonymous gameplay
  • Imposes withdrawal fees on certain payment methods

Overview

Americas Cardroom is a US-focused poker room based in Costa Rica. It was founded in 2001 and became part of the famous Winning Poker Network in 2011. Americas Cardroom is most notable for its massive tournament prize pools. In 2022, the platform hosted a record-breaking Venom tournament with $10 million in guaranteed prizes.

While the tournaments are ACR’s main calling card, it has other things in its favor, including an attractive welcome offer, a mobile-friendly site that features fast-fold, unique game modes, crypto payments, and more.

It is also the third-largest online poker room in terms of US player traffic, trailing behind Bovada and BetOnline.

Available Poker Games

The games at Americas Cardroom include No Limit and Fixed Limit Holdem, Omaha, and Stud. The limits start at $0.01/$0.02 and cap at $75/$150 for Omaha.

We greatly appreciate the platform’s originality in terms of game modes like The Cage, The Beast, Spin to Get In, and others, all of which offer a take on poker different from other sites. Some of the highlights from a vast tournament selection include Million Dollar Sundays ($1 million in guaranteed prizes), Online Super Series, and 24/7 freerolls.

Bonuses

If you deposit $25 or more as a new member, you’ll get to claim a 100% match deposit bonus of up to $2,000. For every 27.5 Award Points you generate through play, you’ll receive a $1 increment of the bonus. Americas Cardroom also features a 6-tier loyalty program with loads of benefits.

Customer Service

You can reach out to the platform’s support team through live chat, email, telephone, or social media pages. If you want a quick response, it’s best to use live chat or a toll-free number. Email support typically responds within three hours.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

Deposits at ACR are feeless. The minimum limits are $25 for cards and $10 for cryptos, and you should definitely use cryptocurrencies if you’re a high-roller, as the maximum limits for Bitcoin and all altcoins are $25,000.

Cryptos are also the best way to withdraw, offering the lowest minimum and highest maximum limits while having the shortest pending times of up to 48 hours. Using other methods to withdraw may result in extra fees.

#6

Bovada Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

100% up to $500

Read full review

Why We Ranked Bovada Poker in Position 6

Bovada needs no special introduction. It’s by far the largest and most famous online poker room for US players, featuring reliable software, a good mobile product, a broad tournament selection, crypto-friendly payment options, and more. Apart from poker, Bovada runs an online sportsbook, casino, and horse race betting platform.

Pros

  • #1 in US player traffic
  • Long-standing brand with a good reputation
  • Safe and quick payouts
  • Plenty of games and tournaments
  • Accepts crypto payments
  • Suitable for mobile poker players

Cons

  • Lacking tournaments on the mobile site
  • Occasional software connection issues

Overview

Bovada started out as Bodog, which was the platform’s official name between 2004 and 2010. After being absent for four years and operating without a license for some time after that, Bovada is currently regulated by Curacao, although the company headquarters are still in Costa Rica.

Bovada Poker built a strong reputation over the years by offering quick payouts and having excellent player support. The site’s other strengths are a user-friendly mobile site, great tournament selection, strong player traffic, the fast-fold game mode (Zone Poker), and much more.

Available Poker Games

Despite having a massive player base, a portion of which would surely be interested in seeing some rare games, Bovada sticks to the basics, offering Fixed Limit Hold’em and Omaha, No Limit Hold’em, and Pot Limit Omaha. The starting stakes are $0.02/$0.05, hitting the ceiling at $30/$60. The maximum limits for Zone Poker are $1/$2.

Bonuses

Bovada’s opening offer is a 100% deposit match up to $500. To redeem the bonus, you must use the bonus code PWB500. The bonus is tied to the platform’s rewards scheme, with every $5 of the bonus released after you collect 150 Rewards Points. There’s also the $75 Bitcoin refer-a-friend incentive and a set of promotions for sports betting and the online casino.

Customer Service

Most players have praised Bovada’s customer service. Reaching the live chat is easy, and the support agents are knowledgeable and quick to respond. Alternatively, you can send an email and receive a response within 24 hours. For more help, you can visit the website’s help center.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

A standard set of credit/debit cards and cryptocurrencies are available for deposits, although you should choose the latter due to card fees. Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash are also the best way to claim your winnings, as you’ll enjoy quick delivery times, no fees, and flexible limits. However, note that the feeless Bitcoin withdrawals are only available once every three days.

#7

BlackChip Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

100% upto $1000 Welcome Bonus

Additional Bonus:

$250
$250 New Depositors Freeroll

Read full review

Why We Ranked Black Chip Poker in Position 7

Another member of the Winning Poker Network, Black Chip Poker, takes the seventh spot on our list. It’s a solid all-around platform that doesn’t stand out but offers what most poker players look for in an online poker room — stable software, relatively quick payouts, a good selection of games and tournaments, and a competitive welcome bonus.

Pros

  • Extensive tournament schedule
  • Above-average welcome bonus
  • Nice-looking software
  • Quick payouts via cryptocurrencies
  • Decent player traffic

Cons

  • No option for macOS and iOS users
  • Doesn’t ban HUDs

Overview

Black Chip Poker started out on its current network in 2012. The company is based in Costa Rica and operates under a Curacao license. At first glance, Black Chip seems like an above-average platform, which it is for the most part, particularly after looking at its jam-packed tournament schedule, lucrative promotions, and quick payment solutions.

However, one major flaw and the main reason it didn’t rank higher is the absence of a mobile-friendly website and the lack of compatibility with Mac computers. On the flip side, BCP has recently released an Android app with the APK file available on their website. This essentially means that Black Chip Poker is exclusive to Windows PC and Android phone users. So if you are among them, you’ll love your time with BCP.

Available Poker Games

Apart from standard Pot Limit, No Limit, and Fixed Limit Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and Omaha Hi/Lo, Black Chip Poker is one of the rare top-rated US poker rooms to offer 7 Card Stud and 7 Card Stud Hi/Lo.

What’s more impressive is the tournament selection, which is massive and commonly features competitions with guaranteed prizes of $100,000 or more.

Bonuses

Black Chip Poker offers a 100% deposit match of up to $2,000 to all new players after depositing $25 or more. Just like most other online poker bonuses, this one also pays out once you earn enough Award Points, with a $1 increment being worth 27.5 points.

Customer Service

You can contact BCP’s virtual assistants via live chat or by filling out a contact form on the website. You can choose whether you wish to talk in English or Spanish, making Black Chip Poker one of the rare platforms with multi-lingual support.

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

Bitcoin is definitely the superior way of transferring money to and from your Black Chip Poker account. It’s fast, doesn’t impose fees, and the minimum deposit limit is $25. It also saves you the risk of your credit card being blocked when you try to deposit money to a poker site, although you have that option, too, as well as a few e-wallets.

#8

SportsBetting Poker

Bonuses
Welcome Bonus:

100% upto $1000

Additional Bonus:

+$250,000
in Guaranteed Tournaments

Read full review

Why We Ranked SportsBetting Poker in Position 8

You might feel that a brand with a name like SportsBetting doesn’t have much to offer to online poker players, and while that logic is sound, you’d be wrong.

SportsBetting is the final pick on our list of top poker sites in California, and it’s well deserving of that spot. This established brand offers modern feature-packed software, an impressive game and tournament selection, instant-play options, crypto payments, and more. Unsurprisingly, SportsBetting also runs an online sportsbook and a casino.

Pros

  • Solid first-deposit bonus
  • Among top-rated sites with US player traffic
  • Great mobile and desktop software
  • Quick crypto payouts
  • Relatively soft competition

Cons

  • Doesn’t block HUDs
  • Lackluster tournament schedule

Overview

Even though it initially built its reputation as a sportsbook, SportsBetting has been an online hub for US poker players since 2012. The company is based and licensed in Panama.

The SportsBetting poker room is solid, offering a nice 100% welcome bonus, featuring both common and rare poker games, with software that works across all major operating systems on desktop and mobile and promising quick deposits and payouts through cryptos and other methods.

Available Poker Games

SportsBetting has a high ranking when it comes to game availability. It offers Limit and No Limit Hold’em, Omaha, 7 Card Stud, Americana, and 32 Card Draw.

Bonuses

You can get a standard 100% bonus of up to $1,000 as a new player at SportsBetting after using the promo code NEWSB. The minimum deposit is $50, and every time you earn $50 worth of rake, you’ll get $5 in bonus money.

Customer Service

Live chat, email, and telephone are the holy trinity of customer support, and SportsBetting made sure that all three means of contact are available 24/7 with quick response times. For specific poker queries, send a message to the dedicated email address at [email protected]

Deposit Methods and Payout Speed

SportsBetting has some of the best success rates for credit card deposits among US poker sites. Still, if you can, you should deposit using cryptocurrency, as it has the most optimal limits. Cryptos are also the best withdrawal option, with a delivery time of up to 48 hours.

All of the above California State online poker site bonuses are subject to change at any time, should any of them be of interest to you please visit the respective Poker sites website for full terms and conditions of any bonus listed.

My video review on online poker in California

 

How to Register on a Real Money Poker Site

Let’s take a look at how joining a real money poker site works:

Choose A Poker Room

Choose a poker site from our list.

Visit the official website using our link.

Signup

Click the Register/Sign Up button.

Follow the registration procedure by inputting the required info.

Verify the account by the site’s instructions.

Deposit & Play

Make a deposit using one of the available deposit methods in the Cashier/Account section.

Once the money is in your account, you can start playing any poker game available.

Real Money Mobile Poker Apps

Since numerous poker sites offer their services to Californian players, many have also created subsequent mobile apps. In many cases, you can download the app straight from their website when on your smartphone. Once you install it, you can use it just like the poker site.

We go into greater detail on California mobile poker apps here, so visit the page to learn more about how they work, how to use them, and what you get from them.

Latest Online Poker News For Californian Poker Players

In mid-December, WPT announced its schedule for the first half of Season XXI, running from January to June 2023. California will be home to two main events, the WPT Rolling Thunder in early April at Thunder Valley Casino in Lincoln and the WPT Gardens Poker Championship at Gardens Casino in Hawaiian Gardens.

The state also saw a few noteworthy tournaments. For instance, the RGPS Contenders Season Finale Presented by PokerGO featured several poker events, the main one having a prize pool of $1 million and 417 entries. The winner was Brett Murray, who took home $172,845.

There was also the WSOPC Los Angeles, with a few dozen events spanning from November to the middle of December. The No-Limit Hold’em Main Event ended on December 14, with a prize pool of almost $400,000. Andrew Merrick came out on top and won $87,120.

How to Select a Good Online California Poker Room

Online Poker CaliforniaIt’s not difficult to locate an online poker room that caters to Californian players. There are plenty of them in operation. However, not all of them cater to the market on a good enough level. That’s why we have gone through the full range of them and singled out the platforms that provide gamers within California with a great experience – and a safe one, too!

All of the poker rooms that we recommend here have gone through thorough testing and we’ve reviewed them in full, too. By checking through these reviews, you’ll be able to find out which ones hold respectable licences, which ones cater to and support your preferred payment method, how good their withdrawal processes are and much more. Reading through such will allow you to filter them to find out which one(s) works best for you.

Selecting a good online California poker room isn’t something that should just be done on a whim. After all, this is all to do with money. Online gambling shouldn’t be taken lightly by anyone. Find a site that you feel comfortable with. See what kind of licensing status it has. Find out about its various offers. Check to see how long it has been in operation. Uncover what kind of poker games it provides within its lobby. See if it supports your preferred payment method. All of these features are what you should look out for and more.

There’s little doubt that there will be one or more online poker rooms that will cater to your preferences. Then, it’s simply a matter of registering at the site and proceeding on with your initial deposit to start playing the games there.

History Of Poker In California

The beginnings of poker can be traced back to the 19th century. Thanks to the Gold Rush, San Francisco quickly became one of the US’s leading gambling destinations. Over time, multiple state governments have attempted to make poker illegal, but somehow, the game always managed to persevere.

In the late 20th century, two significant events led to a poker boom in California. In 1987, California legalized the flop version of Hold ‘em, Stud, and Omaha poker. Until that moment, the state only allowed draw variants of the game.

Since California already had a solid poker foundation, the number of games in the region drastically grew. At that time, the state welcomed the legendary poker rooms in the Commerce Casino and The Bicycle Club that operate to this day.

The second event that brought even more popularity to poker happened in 1988 when Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA), allowing casino properties to operate on Indian land. In the next couple of years, the number of poker rooms rapidly grew. To this day, some casinos in California are the most popular poker destinations.

While the state of California hasn’t got any laws regarding the legal status of online poker, players from there still have the ability to access such games. In fact, California is one of the largest states within the country, meaning that a large portion of players actually operate from there. Essentially, the reason that there aren’t any specifically legal online poker rooms in operation within California, is because there are no regulations in place to allow it.

Yet, there is still a perfectly legal way of accessing online poker from California. Players simply have to sign up to a site that operates from outside of the US. It’s not difficult to find such sites, with many providing their services out of locations like Costa Rica, Panama, Antigua, Curaçao and others. And while some online poker rooms that provide their services to the US do block certain states, California isn’t one of those.

This means that regardless of which online poker room you choose to access from The Golden State, you should still be able to register and deposit there to enjoy rounds of poker.

There are many of these sites for you to access and join in with playing poker alongside other US citizens. In fact, we’ve located plenty of them for you as well, meaning that you can check out the ones that we think are the best. This will help you to avoid any poker rooms that may seem shady and take you along to those that can be trusted instead.

Laws & Regulations In California

LawWith the introduction of the UIGEA in 2006, many poker rooms were affected – especially when it came to the online poker industry. Many companies pulled out of the United States entirely, although California’s constitution doesn’t mark poker gameplay as illegal in any way.

This is more so relative to land-based poker though, which means that the state maintains a strong selection of card rooms throughout the land.

These have been in operation since around 1850 when California officially became a US state.

Unfortunately, online poker isn’t considered to be a specifically legal operation within the state. That’s not to say that it is illegal, but the UIGEA is still in effect across the US, which does put restrictions on what California is able to do as far as online poker is concerned.

Section 330 of the California Penal Code clearly states that a person playing prohibited games is guilty of a misdemeanor and has to pay a fine of $100 to $1,000 or go to county jail for up to six months. Sometimes, both punishments are applicable.

However, this doesn’t mean that the law is applied to players using offshore poker sites. The law is mainly concerned with in-state poker games, usually offline.

Tribal casinos are their own entity, and even though people from the state have been trying to get laws passed through to establish legal online poker, a lot of backlash has come from the tribal communities.

In more recent years though, things seem to have died down with the intention of legalising online poker in California.

For example, much of 2018 and throughout 2019 so far, no poker-related proposals were put forward during legislative sessions. This is a bit of an unfortunate outcome, although the Supreme Court did overturn the PASPA ban in May of 2018. Perhaps a new ruling on online poker will come in due course.

Recent Attempts To Make Poker Legal In California

Based on my research, the first attempts at creating a regulated online poker market date back one decade. To my surprise, I discovered that the person who started a petition to launch a state-run poker platform was Anthony Sandstrom, a YouTuber. Unfortunately, the attempt was unsuccessful after he failed to gather the 430,000 necessary signatures.

In 2008, Assemblyman Lloyd Levine attempted to introduce the California Gambling Control and Intrastate Poker Legalization Act. However, the tribal gaming sector was against such legislation because it would interfere with their interests. That endeavor was rejected, and so were others in the following couple of years.

In 2016, two Assemblymen introduced the Internet Poker Consumer Protection Act intending to authorize entities to apply for seven-year licenses to operate online poker platforms. Although this move seemed promising, it was later rejected. That’s how the state of California remains to this day without a regulated online poker scene.

Future of Online Poker in California

As far as online poker legalization is concerned, California hasn’t made any significant progress in the last couple of years. One of the main reasons that the process always comes to a halt is the intense relationship between PokerStars and Pechanga.

In 2016, the Pechanga coalition suggested a ten-year freeze-out of PokerStars in the state of California. Fortunately for PokerStars, the petition never led to anything, but it ruined any progress previously made in this field. With no solution in sight, we just have to wait and see who will be the first to budge. Until that is resolved, online poker probably won’t become a regulated part of California’s gambling market.

Varieties of Online Poker in California

Playing poker in California is a great past time many enjoy, however those who may be just discovering poker online may be unaware of the different variants that they will have access to when registering with an online poker room. The positive side to this is the discovery will enlighten new players to not just the standard Texas Hold ‘em, but will see them being in the position to learn multiple other variants such as:

One of the advantageous large poker rooms provide is learning tutorials. This can include detailed explanations on how each variant is played and include lessons relating to strategic playing techniques, to will include video tutorials.

When you consider the different variants that we mentioned, the one most played is Texas Hold ‘em as it is the version of poker most known to the majority of players, whether casual, professional or those that play home games. Its rules are the easiest to understand, however so too are the other variants, so taking time to learn them will not only provide an increase game variety but will increase your knowledge overall of poker and the finer details to playing it.

Payment Options On Californian Poker Sites

As you can see, online poker sites offer plenty of deposit options to their users. Now, signing up to an online poker site is one thing, but making a deposit into your account is quite another. You’ll need to know that the payment method that you prefer is supported at your chosen site before registering.

The introduction of 2006’s UIGEA law did affect transactions taking place to gambling sites, which was one of the main reasons that multiple operators chose to pull out of the US. However, since that time, various alternatives to bank transfers and card deposits have come into effect.

Cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrencies

One of the best options to go for when it comes to depositing at an online poker room, is to use a cryptocurrency. There are so many cryptocurrencies available to use these days, including popular options like:

  • Bitcoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • Ethereum
  • Litecoin
  • Dash

Because cryptocurrencies aren’t attached to any sort of central financial institution, the UIGEA law can’t have any sort of effect on them. This means that you can readily deposit and withdraw via any supported cryptocurrency. Due to this, multiple online poker rooms have taken the decision to start supporting such payments.

Digital Wallets

Digital Wallets

While cryptocurrencies are slowly taking over the online gambling industry, players who prefer more traditional payment providers can choose between various digital wallets, such as:

Other Alternative Payment Methods

Other Alternative Payment Methods

If digital wallet or cryptocurrencies aren’t supported or if they’re just not your preferred payment method, one or two other options are generally available to utilise.

Many online poker rooms accept Money Orders as a valid form of payment. The issue with these can often be that they also come with transaction fees that you will need to pay for both depositing and withdrawing. The main other alternative to this is to make use of a Person to Person transfer, which operates in much the same way.

Before you request to withdraw any winnings, make sure you comply with all the requirements stated on the website.

I always tell players to read the fine print — otherwise, the entire cash-out process can become complicated, and none of us want that. Therefore, check the withdrawal limits, transaction time, and any additional T&C you come across to ensure your cashout goes smoothly.

Advantages of Playing Online Poker in California

Many Poker players enjoy taking part in Poker Tournaments however it is often the case that getting to and from the venue where they are being held can prove to be hard, especially if those Poker Tournaments are being held out of State.

Thanks to the online Poker plying environment then you are able to instantly, and with no effort what so ever, take part, enter and play in a huge range of Poker Tournaments whenever and wherever you like, simply by logging into one of our featured Pokers sites.

With there are such a very diverse range of online Poker Tournaments available then you will find plenty of free of charge Poker Tournaments up for grabs, plus you will also be able to take part in Satellite Poker Tournaments which offer you the chance, via a very low entry fee, to win a direct entry into a large paying Poker Tournament.

There really are lots of additional benefits of moving your land based Poker playing action online, so do make sure you checkout all of the above listed sites who all have something unique to offer you whenever you choose to log on and play!

Is Playing Poker Online Safe in California?

There isn’t specifically direct and easy answer for this question, because it generally depends upon the poker room that you’re playing at. For example, players from California won’t have any issues with accessing online poker sites, but not all of them operate in a safe and secure way. This is why it’s always good to make sure that the platform you’re accessing holds a gambling licence or at least has a good reputation behind it.

To put it simply, if an online poker room doesn’t have a gambling licence, then there aren’t really any regulations in place for it to adhere to in order to ensure that it’s providing you with a secure service. While some sites that don’t hold a licence do operate in a fair and just way, there are others that can take advantage of players who don’t know about this. So, while gameplay from California is a safe option, this can’t always be guaranteed unless you do your research beforehand.

Other than having a valid gambling licence and/or a good reputation, you should also check whether or not the platform is utilising a secure server and data encryption technology. Without such, there’s no guarantee that your personal data won’t be kept out of the sightline of prying eyes. It’s very important that an online poker room utilises these features, so that you know you’re not going to be giving up personal and private information to anyone and everyone by using it.

All payments to and from the poker room are carried out using reliable, professional payment processing companies and therefore receiving winnings withdrawn from the poker rooms is not an issue. Many now opt to use cryptocurrencies as all payments are untraceable and therefore remove any potential risk that pertains to federal laws. However, it is important to note; federal authorities do not prosecute individual players. They will, however, if deemed to be acting in defiance or against the wire act laws, will prosecute poker room operators but this is rare and has not occurred in years, so, therefore, playing in California is safe, and players should not have any worries or concerns in doing so.

Famous Poker Players From California

erick lindgren

One California based Poker player that you may be familiar with is Erick A. Lindgren, one of the most successful Poker players who is from Burney in California.

He has proved to be a mean opponent at many Poker Tournaments and has so far won for himself two World Poker Tour titles and has managed to additionally win two World Series of Poker Bracelets.

Other Resources

FAQs

You may have a few different questions regarding playing online poker in the State of California, and as such below we have listed the most frequently asked questions and answered them all for you!

Why is online poker still not regulated in a state as big as California?

Despite several attempts to regulate the online poker market in California, the state hasn’t managed to reach a decision and legalize online poker. The state currently offers many gambling opportunities. From land-based casinos and the horse racing industry to commercial cardrooms, many stakeholders are in play.Consequently, it’s been challenging to reach a consensus and find a solution that would benefit everyone. Therefore, we have yet to see how this situation will develop in the future.

Do players have to be in California to play online poker?

Given that California doesn’t have a regulated online poker scene and that the best options are offshore international poker platforms, players don’t necessarily have to be within state borders. However, if California legalizes online poker and regulates the market, they’ll need to be in the state. Until that happens, poker fans can enjoy playing various online poker games offered on the best gambling platforms.

What is the legal gambling age in California?

Generally, the state of California allows people older than 18 to partake in gambling activities. However, most casinos allow only those over 21 to enter. Still, since you’ll be playing in offshore online poker sites, you need to be 18 or older.

Are there bonuses for online poker players in California?

Yes, there are. Online poker sites that cater to Californian players offer enticing welcome bonuses and ongoing promotions to boost your gambling experience. As soon as you choose one site to sign up in, you’ll be able to claim a bonus and start playing the most exciting poker games.

Are online Poker games available 24 hours a day in California?

YES. All poker games offered with online poker rooms are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This is regardless of where you are located or the state you reside in.

Is there a charge or fee to download the online Poker sites software?

NO. Online poker rooms provide software free without the need to invest in purchasing the software as they retain full ownership of the software. You simply need to visit the poker room, click the download link and the software will begin downloading onto your computer. Some poker rooms are offered via a web browser and access to is also free to those that do.

Are Freeroll Poker Tournaments available to play online in California?

YES. Yes, all freerolls that are available to players online and not restricted to specific countries. Therefore entering freeroll tourneys is as simple as registering and being logged in at the time the tournament begins.

Can Private online Poker Tables bet set up at Poker sites?

YES. No, not all sites offer private tables. PokerStars is one of those that does however they currently do not allow those in California to register and play at the site.

Will I be able to play 7 Card Draw Poker online in California?

YES. Most online poker rooms offer 7 Card Draw Poker and those that reside in the state of California are able to access cash games, sit’n’go’s and 7 Card Draw Poker tournaments online.

About The Author

Adrian Sterne Editor

Hi, I am the Chief Editor of top10pokersites.net, this site is dedicated to all thing poker. I have been working around the poker industry for the last 15 years, with different brands. The main purpose of this site is to keep you uptodate with the industry and offer you the best deals around.