From Doyle Brunson to Daniel Negreanu, many have called Texas Hold ‘Em the greatest game they have ever played. Whether you are just an amateur or have played seriously, you have likely felt the thrill of playing this game of strategy, luck, and wit. If you are ready to move on from playing games at the poker table with your buddies to something more serious, you may consider online poker.
But where can you play Pennsylvania online poker, and how do you play PA online poker? We will look at all that and more, so you can hit the virtual tables and compete with confidence.
How To Play Online Poker PA
If you have never played Texas Hold ‘Em, we will give you a brief rundown of the flow of the game. Each player receives two face-down cards. You use these cards with five face-up community cards to create the best five-card poker hand. While it seems simple to play, there is a wealth of strategies regarding betting techniques and understanding the power of your opponent’s hands.
During each deal, there is a big blind and a small blind. The big blind must pay the minimum bet before seeing any cards, and the small blind antes up half of the minimum bet. Blinds are used by casinos so that a player cannot sit indefinitely at a table without ever putting money into the pot. It encourages play and adds additional strategies.
Once you receive your initial cards, players will begin deciding if they will partake in the hand or fold in the first round of betting. You may either make the minimum bet or raise the minimum bet by a specified amount. If you raise, every other player will have to match the new minimum you have set, or they can reraise. Once every player has paid up or folded, the action moves to the flop.
The dealer turns over the top three cards of the deck for the flop, and players engage in another round of betting. Once betting concludes, the dealer turns over the fourth community card. The third round of betting occurs, and if at least two players remain in the game, the dealer will turn over the final card, known to gamblers as the river. After one final round of betting, the players reveal their cards, and the strongest hand wins in the showdown phase.
If at any time one player is the only person left in the hand, they take the pot by default. You can accomplish this feat with smart wagering or strong bluffing. In professional settings, very few hands ever make it to the showdown phase, as they are experts at bullying fellow players out of hands.
If you are not familiar with hand rankings, here is a quick breakdown of the strength of hands in order from weakest to strongest:
- High card
- One Pair
- Two Pair
- Three of a kind
- Full house
- Four of a kind
- Straight Flush
- Royal Flush
Best PA Online Casinos
When you want to play online Texas Hold ‘Em in PA, there are four sites that we recommend checking out.
PA residents may be familiar with Borgata as it is a recognizable brand from Atlantic City. Rivers Philadelphia partnered with Borgata Poker to create this app. Regardless of your prior knowledge, it is still one of the best places to play poker. We recommend Borgata to those looking to get started playing Texas Hold ‘Em, as it is an approachable app with several low-stakes tables to play at.
Of course, it is not just low-stakes games with buy-ins starting at a few pennies, as Borgata has tables for high rollers as well. The company offers several no-limit tables available with various blind amounts. You will also have the chance to participate in regular tournaments through the shared player pool the Borgata app has with BetMGM.
If you want to try out online poker, we recommend trying out Borgata and its low-stakes tables.
Perhaps no Texas Hold ‘Em site has remained as famous over the years as PokerStars; it has been a force in online poker since the 2000s and continues to be the most popular place to play a few hands virtually. PokerStars was the first site to allow Pennsylvania residents to legally play poker online.
The player pool does not include New Jersey residents, so you will only be playing against other Pennsylvanians when you play on PokerStars. The site partnered with the Mount Airy Casino to open up service in the Keystone State.
PokerStars has everything you would expect from an online poker service, including cash games and tournaments. It hosts a yearly tournament, the Pennsylvania Championship of Online Poker, along with other big-money formats. If you have some experience playing poker online and are looking for the biggest site, Pokerstars is worth a look.
When you conjure up associations with poker in your head, Las Vegas likely comes to mind. If you want to play on a site with backing from Sin City, you should look into BetMGM. With backing from MGM Resorts International, it is one of the fastest-growing gambling apps, and the poker selections are exquisite.
One of the best features on BetMGM for those who always want to be playing is Fast Forward, a game type where as soon as you fold a hand you are dealt a new one. While you may not get to slow down and understand the dynamics of the table, you will be constantly in the game, and it is the perfect method of poker playing for those with little time.
Aside from Fast Forward, you have your choice of cash games and regular tournaments. BetMGM also gives users several new player bonuses, so this is another excellent app for new players.
If you have ever been flipping through the channels, chances are you have caught a few reruns of the World Series of Poker or WSOP. Caesars Palace owns the World Series of Poker trademark, and they brought it to Pennsylvania with the WSOP app. It is one of the most user-friendly poker services on the market, and you may have a chance to come across some of the legends of the game.
WSOP has both an app and a desktop client, so no matter how you choose to play poker you will have the option available. There are several new player perks as well, so you owe it to yourself to give it a try, even if you decide to go with a different service as your primary place to play. WSOP offers several tournaments and cash games for players.
Is It Legal to Play Online Texas Hold ‘Em in Pennsylvania?
Yes! It has been legal to play poker online in Pennsylvania since 2017 when Gov. Tom Wolf signed House Bill 271. The widespread proliferation of online poker has been slower in the Keystone State than sportsbooks, though new poker apps spring up regularly.
Online poker is open to anyone over 21 who resides in Pennsylvania. You will need to provide data to verify your identity when you sign up for any of the services, including your address and social security number. Once the company confirms your identity, you may make your first deposit and begin playing Texas Hold ‘Em.
How Do I Deposit and Withdraw Money From Poker Apps?
You can transfer funds to and from poker services in various ways, though using a debit or credit card is the most straightforward. If you prefer, you can have funds taken directly from your bank account with an Echeck.
Aside from the conventional methods, you can deposit money at the casino if you live by one or purchase a cash card from the casino in question to add money to your account.
Tips for Playing Online Texas Hold ‘Em PA
Texas Hold ‘Em is a complicated game and remains popular with gamblers of all skill levels. While you may never be as skilled as Phil Ivey or famous as Phil Hellmuth, you can still have fun playing one of the most rewarding games at the casino. Here are a few quick tips for new players.
Always set a budget and stick to it. If you are on a losing streak, it is better to walk away than keep throwing money away. Always gamble responsibly.
Practice on smaller tables before moving to higher-stakes games. There are many books written about poker, and reading any of them will put you above the average casino player. Once you have a strategy, whether it is small ball or playing tight, stick to it as best you can.
Avoid going on tilt. If you have a few bad beats and the hands are not going your way, there is no shame in walking away from your computer.
Conclusion: How to Play Texas Hold ‘Em Poker Online in Pennsylvania
Texas Hold ‘Em is a high-risk game, but with responsible bankroll management and practice, you can play at some exciting tables entirely from home. There are a few poker sites to choose from, so if you enjoy playing a few hands, consider signing up for one today.