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Most of us started playing poker either in a live home game or in low stakes cash games in a casino. Until the late 1990’s, live poker was the only form of poker available. After the Poker Boom, online poker exploded and is now the primary source of poker gaming in the world.

So why aren’t you playing online poker? Have you stayed away because of certain horror stories regarding unscrupulous operators? Maybe you aren’t quite sure what online poker is all about. Now is a great time to be an online poker player and if it is legal in your area, you should be playing.

Still not convinced? Below are 9 reasons you should be playing online poker.

Always a Game

Whenever you login to play online poker, you will always find poker games to compete in. If you login at 3 p.m. in the afternoon, there’s a game. If you login at 4:15 a.m., you will also find plenty of action. Most sites run cash games and poker tournaments around the clock. So whenever you have the itch to play, login and take your seat.

Greatly Reduced Rake

When you play poker games online, you have the advantage of greatly reduced rake over that in a live game. The reason why online poker rooms can charge reduced rake is the speed of the game coupled with the sheer volume of tables running at one time. This saves you money and allows you to stretch your bankroll dollars. And many online poker rooms also offer rakeback – a way for you to get back some of the rake you put in.

Micro-Stakes Available Online

In the live arena, low stakes poker starts at $1-$2 for NL and $2-$4 for Limit poker. If you play online poker, you have a whole world of micro stakes games that have blinds as little as .01-.02 for NL and .02-.04 for limit games.

In the live arena, you need at least $20 to $40 for a bare minimum buy-in for low stakes poker. Online, you play on some poker tables for as little as 50 cents.


Playing one table at a time is great in a live game but also is limiting on the amount of money you can make each hour. With online poker, you have the option of playing multiple tables at one time to increase your hourly rate.

Multi-tabling is a must if you plan to play online poker professionally. Which sounds better, making $35 an hour playing one table or earning $20 an hour on each of four tables? Imagine if you could profitably play eight, 12 or even 16 tables at a time. If you play online poker, you can!

You Can Play in Your Underwear – Or Not

What’s more relaxing than kicking back and watching TV on the couch in your shorts or underwear? How about playing online poker in your underwear? At live poker tables, how you dress will make all the difference between winning and losing. The great thing about playing online poker is that you don’t have to worry about how you look as no one will ever see you. (Well, unless you play while live streaming on Twitch. Then at the very least put on a shirt.)

In fact, you don’t have to get dressed at all. Some of you that like to go commando could try your hand at naked online poker.

Just make sure you don’t post any pics to Facebook.

Nobody wants to see that.

Play More than Texas Hold’em

If you like to play games other than Texas Hold’em, your options are going to be limited in brick and mortar casinos. You might find some Omaha or Stud poker but that’s about it. If you like to play Badugi, Stud 8 or Better, 2-7 Lowball, Five Card Draw or other poker variants, your only option will be online poker.

Just about every poker variant imaginable is available online. You may have to look around but you will your favorite game somewhere online, even Open Face Chinese Poker.

Work on Your Game for Cheap

Playing poker can be expensive while you’re learning the game or trying to improve your game. When you play online poker, you can reduce that expense by playing low stakes or even free play poker.

Trying new styles of play in a live game can cost you hundreds or even thousands depending on how well you run. Doing the same online can be done for just a few dollars per buy-in. A deposit of $50 can go a long way in micro stakes. Try your luck at a new style of poker online before heading to the live tables to see if you like it.

Shut the F**k Up!

Ever been at a table in a live poker game with someone you wish you could put a muzzle on? Unfortunately, there are just as many loudmouths in online poker as there is in live poker. However, with online poker you can disable online chat and effectively muzzle your opponents. The person that invents the live poker muzzle will become rich.

Get a Lifetime of Experience in Short Amount of Time

Playing a normal 40 hour week in the live arena, it could take you 10 years or more to play a million hands. However, with the speed of online poker you can accelerate the learning curve dramatically.

Playing five tables at a time, a player could play a standard 40-hour week and play 1 million hands in just a year’s time. Players that are more aggressive or those spending more time could do so in even half that time.

The reason that the face of poker has become younger in recent years is because online poker allows players to gain a lifetime of experience in a short amount of time. There are players that have played as many hands in two years as old-school players like Doyle Brunson has in 30 years.

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James Guill

James Guill began his poker career in 2006, spending two years traveling the US tournament circuit. Since 2008, he has covered the game extensively for some of the biggest names in the industry. When not writing about the latest poker news, he can be found hunting for antique treasures in Central Virginia.