If there’s one thing we know, it’s that online poker is insanely popular in the United Kingdom. In fact, there are so many websites and providers in the online poker UK market that choosing the right one can be pretty confusing. Do you look for the best deposit bonus or pay more attention to player traffic? And what about the tournament schedules or the possibility of satellites for live events?
Like we said, it’s confusing for even the seasoned pros among us.
Luckily for you that’s where poker nuts like us come in. We’ve spent weeks on end going through all of the options out there and came up with this list of best online poker sites in the UK.
Now, it’s certainly not a conclusive list by any means. After all, there are many other online poker providers in the United Kingdom.
But as far as we’re concerned these are the UK online poker sites that are streets ahead of the rest.
The Top Poker Sites in the UK
Long gone are the days of PokerStars ruling the roost in the UK. Yes, they are still the biggest provider in Britain, but they no longer have the stranglehold on the industry that they had for many years.
And that is a very good thing indeed for UK players.
Look, we have nothing against PokerStars and their one-time monopoly of the UK market, but let’s face it, we were tired of having so very few decent poker rooms for so very long.
Now that 888poker and other operators have finally upped their game, we’re seeing an entire market rejuvenated.
Competition between the old stalwarts is fierce and then there are the relative new kids on the block that are also looking for their slice of the pie.
All of this means that while it’s a little confusing deciding which platform is right for you, the packed market means that there are some great bonus offers to be found at UK poker rooms. And that’s before we even mention customer service and gaming options.
What to consider when choosing where to play online poker
So how did we come up with the best UK poker sites on this list?
Well, by playing lots of poker for a start but also by taking a look at each online poker room from a different perspective. That’s why we decided to list recommended poker sites according to a specific aspect of their services and poker experience.
We find that some of the most important factors to keep in mind when evaluating UK online poker sites are:
Remember too that this list might change as the online poker landscape changes and evolves in the United Kingdom. The UK Gambling Commission makes sure that the licensed online poker rooms in the United Kkingdom hold on to the highest standards and gambling laws.
In other words, times change and so too do poker sites for UK players.
Okay, that’s enough waffle for now, here are our top UK poker sites in no particular order:
Best UK online poker site for the World Series of Poker
GGPoker is the newest player to enter the UK market and what a splash they have made.
It’s the home of living legend Dan Negreanu and has an amazingly slick client that many feel beats the hell out of the iPoker skins. We’re not here to comment on that but since they opened up in 2014, they have grown very fast in player traffic.
The brand has aced the mobile aspect of online poker play and many poker sites will copy the features of their mobile poker app for iOS and Android to keep up. Although GGPoker his a higher rake than other poker sites, the softness of the games compensate that quite well. You can find buy-ins from micro stakes to ultra high stakes.
But what’s all this about the World Series of Poker? Well, GGPoker is the online home of the WSOP and hosted the first ever online WSOP with huge guarantees in 2020.
That alone grants the site a place on our list.
There’s plenty of deposit options and poker variants to suit every poker player on GGPoker. You’ll find a suitable game fast at both cash games and tournaments. You can check out our in-depth review of GGPoker or get started with a 100% match welcome bonus of up to $600.
Best UK online poker site for a massive welcome bonus
Although Guts may not be the household name like PokerStars or 888poker, their parent company Betsson has been in the gambling industry for an incredible 50+ years.
Guts Poker runs on the iPoker Network so it has some pretty good traffic in real money poker games. Players can try out the ever popular Twister Sit & Go tournaments on the site. However, you can do that on every skin running on iPoker, right?
The reason we added Guts Poker to our list is because they offer an unbelievable 100% first deposit match bonus of up to €1,000. You read that right. €1,000!
Listen, not everyone is going to throw in that much money as a first deposit, but for those of you that have the cash to spare, it’s a hell of a deal. You get paid handsomely simply by playing poker online.
You can grab your Guts Poker €1,000 welcome poker bonus here.
Best UK online poker site for recreational players
Unibet Poker knew that it couldn’t compete with the likes of PokerStars so the brand took a look at the market and realised that the one thing that was missing was a solid online poker site that catered specifically to recreational players.
So they banned HUDs (heads-up display tools) and lowered their rake for low limit poker games and made the site the go-to place for casual online poker players. In fact, their current rake of between 1% and 6% in cash games is the lowest you’ll find in the uk online poker industry. The site also allows players to change their poker alias three times a day allowing for complete anonymity.
You could say it’s a paradise for recreational players. Most of their real money poker action is at Texas Hold’em and Pot-Limit Omaha tables. Getting rewarded with a cash game ticket can be a pleasant surprise after a session played at Unibet.
You can check out our comprehensive review of Unibet Poker or go right ahead and take advantage of their £500 playthrough poker bonus for first depositors!
Best UK online poker site for poker tournaments
Okay, so we spoke earlier about PokerStars having almost complete control of the UK market for quite some time, but as we also mentioned, that’s certainly no longer the case.
However, by all accounts they are still the top dogs when it comes to player traffic. And all of that traffic means that PokerStars can offer an incredible range of online poker tournaments that is possibly the best on the planet. Huge guaranteed events — you’ve heard of the Sunday Million, right? — mean that the weekly qualifiers and satellites are always going to be busy. This makes it the perfect UK poker site for players that are all about the multi-table tournaments with huge prize pools.
PokerStars offers a £20 Free Play welcome deposit that comes in the form of — yes you guessed it — tournament tickets!
Best UK online poker site for absolute beginners
While 888poker has cornered the market on poker strategy, Bet365 Poker decided to take a slightly different approach and make their site the best for complete beginners.
As you may know, Bet365 is on the iPoker Network along with a slew of other brands such as Betsson Poker, Paddy Power, and Betfair. So with so much competition on the same network, they’ve decided to target the beginners market. Obviously, this is in the hope that once beginners learn how to play online poker properly, they’ll stay with Bet365 Poker.
So how do they do this?
They created beginners cash game poker tables that can only be accessed by players during their first 90 days on the site. This means that beginners get a safe, shark-free player pool where they can play real money poker. It’s an incredibly simple idea but one that works very well.
It also helps that they offer a very tasty welcome bonus of up to €365.
Best UK online poker site for learning about poker strategy
888poker was always a fairly good poker site, but it always seemed to be playing catch up with PokerStars. While that may still be true when it comes to poker tournaments, 888poker is streets ahead of the competition when it comes to improving your poker skills.
They have one of the most extensive and impressive poker blogs of any of the major players. Their knowledge base is vast and they even have guys like Jared Tendler, a licensed therapist who specializes in sports psychology writing guides on the mental side of the game. Yep, they go real deep with their guides.
So if improving your game is top of your list, then 888poker should be your first port of call. You can check out our complete review of 888poker or jump right in and grab your £20 FREE – no deposit needed welcome bonus here.
While we’re talking about 888poker we think that it’s only right that we point out an issue we have documented. It was a case involving Finnish high-stakes player Jussi Nevanlinna and his experience with 888poker.
As we mentioned earlier, there are many other excellent UK online poker sites such as Betfair Poker, William Hill, and Paddy Power Poker and if we’re completely honest, we struggled to whittle the list down to the seven gambling sites listed above.
So whether you decide to go with one of our choices or another of the big names currently operating in the United Kingdom, the chances are you can’t go too far wrong. With such strong competition in the UK market, every brand has upped their game considerably and the industry has never looked healthier or had so many reputable providers for poker fun.
Online Poker UK FAQ
Is online poker legal in the UK?
Yes, UK residents can legally play poker online on both country-licensed and offshore poker sites according to the 2005 Gambling Act. The law requires you to be 18 or over and have a permission to operate the computer, laptop or mobile device you’re playing with.
How is online gambling regulated in the UK?
The UK Gambling Commission is the legal body responsible for regulating real money gambling. Online gambling operators must acquire a gambling license from the UKGC if they wish to offer real money poker games to UK citizens.
Where can you play live poker in the UK?
You can find live card rooms in most big cities. The most versatile poker scene is in London, where casinos like The Victoria Casino, Hippodrome Casino, and Aspers Casino run live poker rooms every day of the week. Perhaps the most legendary poker room in the UK is Dusk Till Dawn Poker Club in Nottingham, hosting various live tournament events and cash games.
What are the different regulated UK poker sites?
There are tons of regulated online poker sites in the UK, with few examples being GGPoker, Betsson, Unibet, Guts, Bet365, PokerStars, and William Hill.
Who are the best UK poker players?
Some of the top British poker players include Sam Trickett, Charlie Carrel, Alex ‘Kanu7’ Millar, Stephen Chidwick, Chris Moorman, Roland De Wolfe, Victoria Coren Mitchell, Liv Boeree, and Jake Cody. Dave ‘Devilfish’ Ulliott who passed away in 2015 was a top-level player from the UK, and was known all over world in poker circles.
Johannes is the Editor in Chief at Beasts Of Poker and is an expert in both live & online poker. Johannes played online poker semi-professionally for 5 years while completing his Master’s Degree in Technology.