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Established in 2001 in Europe, PokerStars became a poker household name over the following years in the U.S. After a brief exit from the U.S. market in 2011, PokerStars returned with real-money online poker in New Jersey.
Since launching in NJ in 2013, PokerStars has expanded to Pennsylvania and Michigan, bringing players exciting cash games and tournaments.
The poker site is the world’s largest in terms of number of players, boasting some of the largest prize pools in the industry.
Before you play at the real-money PokerStars, we recommend the free-play version of the poker site, called PokerStars.bet. There are many ways to sharpen your skills, while claiming bonuses.
Should You Play At PokerStars?
Yes, this poker site is one of the most popular and trusted platforms in the U.S., bringing poker players the best and most action-packed ring games and tournaments on the internet.
Peer-to-peer poker is a skill-based game, and PokerStars is a site where skilled players can win money. Practice your card game skills on PokerStars.
PokerStars has micro stakes options and tables where you can buy-in for just a few bucks, all the way up to stakes available for more seasoned players. Players of all experience levels will find what they are looking for at PokerStars.
PokerStars Promos in 2023
PokerStars is currently offering a variety of ongoing promotions that all players can take part in. Below is the current list of offers featured on PokerStars.bet.
No promo code is required for the following promotions if you sign up through The Game Day Casino.
Buying Play Chips
Although every player automatically receives 35,000 complimentary Play Chips upon registering his or her account, this current promotion allows players to purchase chip bundles at a “mega value."
There are many bundles to choose from, starting at $2.99 for 500,000 chips and peaking at $499.99 for 1,325,000,000. PokerStars offers flash sales throughout the year to save money on chips, but this current promotion encourages players to save their money by purchasing chips in bulk.
You can also top-up your Play Chips balance with 15,000 free Play Chips every four hours.
Daily Mystery Mega Prize
As the name suggests, the bonus players will earn from this promotion each day remains a mystery. That is until they unlock the mystery chest, which contains instant casino bonuses of up to $500.
To make an attempt at breaking into this chest and reaping the rewards, players must first wager a minimum of $1 in any game by opting in under the “Challenges" tab.
There is a 2x playthrough requirement in order to unlock the chest, but players have up to 7 days to meet it. Players can claim a Mystery Mega Prize once each day, but the minimum $1 wager is required every time.
PokerStars Rakeback Bonus
PokerStars does not currently have a rakeback offer. If you join the site, you can activate a bonus play deal plus a bonus match offer. The special deals give you instant cash to play with from the start, so you can easily explore cash games and tournament options.
Upon signup, new players receive a $100 poker and casino bonus play deal, with the bonus cash available for seven days. Once you play with the free funds, you can deposit and use the welcome bonus 100% match. The bonus match deal is valued at up to $600.
How To Join PokerStars.bet
Signing up and playing on PokerStars is a straightforward process.
- Click a PokerStars link on this page
- Download the software when prompted
- Create your PokerStars account
- Make your first deposit
- Start playing cards!
Can You Win Real Money At PokerStars?
Yes, the platform allows real-money deposits and withdraws. You play with real money on PokerStars.
As mentioned, TGD Casino has an exclusive offer for PokerStars.bet, the free-play version of the poker site. You can receive generous quantities of Play Chips.
In cash games at the real-money PokerStars, you play directly with real money, while in tournaments you use real money to enter and are given chips that don’t have a real cash value. Whoever sits with all the chips at the end wins, with payouts in real money based on finishing place.
Is PokerStars Legal?
Yes. PokerStars operates under legal gambling laws in the U.S. Online gaming is regulated at the state level, so PokerStars has secured approval from several states so far.
PokerStars.bet is legal nationwide, however.
Who Can Play Poker On PokerStars?
In order to enjoy playing on the real-money PokerStars, players must be at least 21 years of age or older to be in compliance with federal laws. Another law states funds made from gambling cannot be transferred over state lines, so all of the players in a room must legally be in the same state.
Operators such as PokerStars work hard to comply with all state and federal laws. That is why poker sites are “ring-fenced" to certain state markets.
PokerStars works tirelessly to validate players’ locations in order to follow the laws so that everyone can legally enjoy the casino for years to come.
For PokerStars.bet, you need to just be 18.
Where Can You Play on PokerStars?
PokerStars is live and legal in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and New Jersey. Those states have given the platform a full stamp of approval.
Additional states are expected to approve PokerStars in the future.
PokerStars.bet is available nationwide.
My PokerStars Experience
Compared to other similar online poker lookalikes, it is very apparent that PokerStars really knows what it’s doing. This site excels in delivering what the player wants.
It knows what looks and feels fun, as well as how to keep the entire operation running as smoothly as possible, from your first raised bet to your first cash out. Being in the industry for over twenty years makes all the difference here.
It is incredibly convenient that players can experience this without needing to be in person with other players from around their home state. Speaking of convenience, I appreciate the fact that the mobile client was completely self-contained.
From account creation to addition of funds, viewing available tables, and joining tables with other users across multiple limits, playing on PokerStars is an overall smooth experience.
With poker variants like Hold’em and Omaha being timeless, well-known games that are fully fleshed out (including variants within those game types), they are still as timeless as ever.
The game does well to really capture the feeling of playing a home game with friends. I was glad to see that some of the issues which plague other sites have been almost fully ironed out here.
While playing a home game with friends isn’t exactly completely replicable on an electronic device, the creation of a networking feature where others around the state can be played against is as close as it gets.
You can even use the chat feature available at the game tables to get to know your fellow players. I personally found myself having enjoyable conversations over the messaging box while playing.
Lastly, as with any competitive game or sport, someone must win, and someone must lose. In general, poker is heavily influenced by skill, and with the different variations of the different game types, there’s an endless amount of interesting scenarios that can play out and, of course, the suspense we all know and love.
At the end of the day, as long as you have an enjoyable experience, that’s more than can be expected from many applications. I give it a thumbs up!
You’ll only find poker-based games on PokerStars, but the options for this one form of gaming are immense.
PokerStars has cash games, tournaments, sit-and-gos, and satellites available for players, with around-the-clock action. You’ll always find a game 24/7 at PokerStars, without having to leave your home to go to a brick-and-mortar poker room.
One of the earliest, most popular types of poker was a timeless and simple version called 5 Card Draw. Since then, other popular variations like Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and Seven have emerged, adding interest, suspense, and different layers of skill to the beloved card game.
Below, we will give a brief rundown of the various types of poker games players will find on PokerStars.
It is safe to say that Texas Hold’em has dethroned 5 Card Draw as the “king of poker games." At the start of the round, all players are dealt two cards facedown.
These are called “pocket cards" or “hole cards." Then a round of betting goes clockwise around the table. Instead of a traditional ante like many poker variants have, Texas Hold’em has something called blinds.
There is a small blind and a big blind. The two players to the immediate left of the dealer are small and big blind, moving outward. These players must wager the price of a blind ante if they are the big blind or half this amount if they are the small blind.
From here, players look at their two hole cards and either call the blind to play, quit the round by folding, or choose to raise.
How much the player can raise is determined by the type of Hold’em being played. The most popular, No-Limit Hold’em, has no limit to how much a player can bet. If you want to bet your entire stack of chips during any betting round, you can.
Limit Hold’em has fixed limits on the maximum amount a player can bet or raise. Pot-Limit Hold’em is a middle-of-the-road compromise between these two types; players can increase the size of their bet up to the amount that is already in the pot.
Next, multiple rounds of betting occur, with the cards in the middle of the table, known as community cards, slowly revealed throughout the hand following the betting rounds.
The object of the game is to win the pot, which will net you all the chips that have been wagered into it during the current hand. This is done either when every other player folds or the last card is revealed, and you show the best five-card hand. The deal then moves to the next player in a clockwise motion.
Omaha has very similar round-style betting, with some noted exceptions.
Omaha is very similar to poker in terms of betting rounds and betting limits. The biggest difference is that players are each given four hole cards instead of two. Only two of the four cards can be used to make the highest five-card hand.
There is a variant of Omaha, however, where the high card doesn’t win the entire pot. This version is called Omaha Hi-Lo. As one might surmise from its name, Omaha Hi-Lo is a “split-pot" version of Omaha poker in which players compete for both the “high" and “low" halves of the pot.
Omaha hi-lo is usually played with fixed-limit betting. For example, Pot Limit Omaha.
Seven-Card Stud Hi-Lo
Seven-Card stud eight or better plays just like seven-card stud until the showdown, although there’s usually more action. The big difference is that the pot gets split 50-50 between the highest poker hand and the best possible low hand. Not all hands have a qualifying low.
To have a low hand, you need 5 cards ranked 8 or lower in your hand. And you can’t include a pair as part of this low hand.
So a hand with an 8-7-6-5-4 would qualify as a low hand, even though it’s also straight. But 7-7-6-5-4 wouldn’t qualify as a low hand because of the pair.
Many poker players look forward to participating in tournaments with a “guaranteed prize pool." This means that regardless of the number of people playing, there is a minimum amount of prize money guaranteed.
If the number of players in such tournaments is low and the amount of money totaling this guaranteed prize amount is not met, then the room will supply the rest of the money to meet the guaranteed amount. This is referred to as an “overlay."
Guaranteed prize pool tournaments are among the many types of tournaments that PokerStars offers. Sundays normally have the largest prize pool tournaments.
One of these tournaments is called the Sunday Million. With a one Million chip prize pool, this weekly tournament promotion provides players with the potential to reap massive rewards.
While participating in this weekly promotion, players can compete among poker legends (who each have a bounty on their head) in the game Play Money.
There are winners every week, no matter how many players signup for the tournament. Throughout the week, there are also guaranteed prize pool tournaments offered multiple times each day in smaller amounts of prizes.
Each of the three states that PokerStars serves has its own unique guaranteed prize pool tournaments and offerings:
Guaranteed Tournaments In NJ
In New Jersey, PokerStars hosts the tournament series “New Jersey Championship of Online Poker," or NJCOOP.
Here, over 50 events are held, including guaranteed prize pool tournaments with guaranteed prizes amounting to over $1 million.
Guaranteed Tournaments In PA
PokerStars created another series of tournaments, such as the PACOOP (Pennsylvania Championship of Online Poker" to appease their Pennsylvania players.
Similar to the New Jersey Championship of Online Poker series from PokerStars, this Pennsylvania-based series of tournaments feature a vast selection of events around the clock, including daily guaranteed prize pool tournaments with large payouts.
The PACOOP series has attracted a lot of praise from poker players for holding such an “impressive selection of game variations."
Guaranteed Tournaments In MI
Just as this company did in the other two states, PokerStars created a series exclusively for its Michigan players: Michigan Championship of Online Poker, or MICOOP for short.
MICOOP is the newest of the three tournament series by PokerStar, but it continues to see success as more and more players participate in the daily guaranteed prize pool tournaments offered.
In addition to large, prescheduled tournaments, sit-and-go tournaments (often abbreviated to SNGs) are also offered by the poker site.
In these tournaments, there is no start time; the match begins once a certain number of players join. Sit-and-go matches can consist of multiple tables or just one table. Multi-table SNGs can have 18 or 27 players. Single-table SNGs have as many as 9 players, or as few as 2 players battling 1-on-1.
Sit-and-go tournaments are offered each day. One such type is the Spin & Go tournament, which PokerStars describes as “a type of Hyper-Turbo Sit & Go that gives players a chance to play for a prize pool that is much bigger than a tournament buy-in would normally be".
PokerStars is a casino that is almost entirely online, but there are some opportunities for those who like to play in person. Satellite tournaments are tournaments with a lower buy-in fee that allows finalists entry into a more highly-priced tournament.
Online poker sites like PokerStars may occasionally offer satellite tournaments with prizes consisting of an entry into a live poker tournament in Las Vegas or Atlantic City. Some of these satellites may even include the covering of travel expenses!
These kinds of tournaments don’t stay around very long, as they often fill up quickly. So keep your eyes open for them!
Banking Options at PokerStars
PokerStars makes it easier than ever for players to successfully and quickly handle banking transactions, whether it be depositing funds into their accounts or cashing out winnings.
PokerStars has truly prioritized the customer’s need for instant deposits so that they can jump back into the game as soon as they add funds. The company also accepts the most popular methods of online payments, including:
With so many ways to pay, players can easily reload funds into their accounts without a hassle. The process to deposit the money is also incredibly simple, as customers can pay by clicking “cashier," then “deposit," and lastly, filling out their desired payment method.
Withdrawing money from PokerStars is made just as easy as it is to deposit it. Simply click “cashier," then “withdrawal," then select the amount you wish to withdraw, and choose the card you want the money to go to. Most of the same methods available for depositing are also available for withdrawal.
PokerStars customer service is as easy to access as its poker game library. The online poker casino offers an easy way for customers to get in touch with customer support through the mobile application by clicking the “help" tab, then the account icon, and finally selecting “contact us".
The same result can be achieved on the desktop by choosing “help" and then “Contact Us". To better assist players in an efficient and quick response time, there is no telephone number for customer support.
It should be noted that there is no live chat. Instead, players can fill out a support form with details about their inquiry. PokerStars support usually has a quick response, but sometimes it can take up to 24 hours.
Players have often praised PokerStars for having excellent customer service with representatives who are polite, professional, and genuinely appear to want players to have the best experience possible, but the lack of a dedicated telephone number or live chat option may be a detriment to some.
Self-Exclusion & Player Safety
PokerStars wants the game to remain fun for its players. Unfortunately, online gaming can be addictive, and some players develop compulsive behavior. You are not alone. The site offers the option to self-exclude from playing, guidance on responsible gaming, risk identification, and player verification.
You can exclude yourself from playing for a specific period. To do this, please email PokerStars support.
All exclusion periods apply to all game types on PokerStars.
PokerStars Multi-State Network
Currently, PokerStars players can only play against a pool of players who are also located in the same state as they are. While there is shared liquidity among New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada, PokerStars only operates in New Jersey.
For other states, player liquidity isn’t possible due to the Wire Act. However, it seems that poker laws tend to be in a constant state of flux, much like poker hands themselves.
There has been some movement from Michigan to join the player liquidity pool with New Jersey, Delaware, and Nevada. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania has written into the law that shared liquidity is an option, but it has yet to join any of the other states.
Sharing the player pool will add much liquidity to the number of games and tournaments that can be offered by sites. If things continue in this trajectory, players from more and more legal gambling states might soon be able to play against each other across state lines.