Michael McKean is an experienced writer with a portfolio that includes work on the subjects of sport, gambling, travel and finance. With a background rooted in journalism, Michael first ventured into the professional writing world based in Switzerland, where he wrote for a number of language and travel sites and magazines before moving into the world of sports writing and gambling sites.
As an avid soccer fan, who follows everything from the Scottish lower leagues to the European elites, he has earned himself a solid reputation as a reliable football betting tipster and predictor. Outside of work, Michael has always gotten involved with grassroutes football everywhere he has worked and lived – UK, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland and Brazil – and still isn’t shy when it comes to pulling the boots on himself. As well as soccer, he has also developed a love of North American sports, particularly ice hockey – a love which began in Switzerland and saw him venture across the pond to follow the NHL. Moving away from dry land, he’s also a keen longboard surfer and is happiest when writing with a view of the ocean.
Casinos became legal in Pennsylvania in 2004. But most of the brick-and-mortar casinos didn’t do much to lure in poker players. They were mostly just about slot machines, which is great if that’s what you are into, but not so wonderful if you are a poker player.
But then in October 2017 playing online poker in Pennsylvania for real money became legal. That opened up a whole new set of doors for online poker in Pennsylvania. People can now simply log in on their desktops and laptops at home or from their mobile devices when they are on the go. A bunch of Pennsylvania online poker sites has since cropped up and it’s never been a better time to play in Pennsylvania than now.
Poker in PA is growing and now is the time to get in on the action and see if you have the skills it takes to win.
When it came time for us to rate the best sites for online poker in Pennsylvania, we had to take multiple factors into account. There is no one thing that will make one Pennsylvania online poker site better than another. Overall, it’s the sum total of everything that is offered.
Here are the criteria we laid out when we rated online poker in PA:
How smoothly the site operates. When playing online poker in Pennsylvania you don’t want to have to worry about your connection cutting out right when you are in the middle of a big hand. We tested each of these sites in different conditions to see how solid the connection was. While no site will perform perfectly if you are in your car or on a train these sites will stay connected if you are in one place.
The variety of poker games on offer. When playing poker in PA you will generally be playing Texas Hold ‘Em. And that’s a great game. There is a reason it is a classic. But you may sometimes want to play a different type of poker. There is a wide variety of five-card draw games available to online casinos and we looked to see if they were on offer at the Pennsylvania online poker sites.
The quality of their bonus offers. There are multiple types of bonus offers available. Some of the no deposit bonuses. Some are matching cash. Others are tournaments with big prizes. They all have play through minimums of varying degrees. We looked through the terms and conditions of each offer and rated them for quality.
The level of customer service. Providing good, reliable customer service is essential for any online casino. When playing poker in PA you want to know that they will be responsive to your questions. Because at the end of the day a site is only as good as its ability to respond to problems. We took a close look at when customer service was available. We also looked at the type of customer service offered. Was it only live chat? Could you call them up? Send them an email? Finally we tested all of their customer service options to see how long it would take them to respond. And we checked their responses to make sure they were correct.
How easy it is to register for the site. When you want to play online poker in Pennsylvania you want to be able to get into the action right away. You don’t want to have to fill out a ton of forms. We checked out the sign-up pages for all of the sites. We looked to see if they just asked for the information they needed or if they tried to get other information out of you for marketing purposes. The less information they requested the higher rank we gave them.
How easy is it to deposit money into your account? Once again when you want to play poker in PA you want to be able to do so right away. All deposits should show up instantly. In addition, there should be a variety of ways to put money into your account. You should be able to use your credit card. PayPal should be available. So should e-wallets. The more options a site gave for making deposits the higher the overall rank they received.
How much time does it take to get your withdrawal? When you play online poker in Pennsylvania your goal is to win money. Why else would you play? And if you win money you want to be able to put it in your pocket. Each and every online casino in Pennsylvania has different rules about withdrawals. All require about a day to look at, verify and process your withdrawal. Then the amount of time they need to take in order to process it back to you. This somewhat depends on what you used to make your deposit. Getting your money back from Facebook will be far quicker than getting it sent to your credit card.
Does the site have an app? Some people are happy to play online poker in Pennsylvania from their home on their laptop or desktop. But other people would like the chance to play on the go. If you travel a lot and spend a ton of time in airports killing time playing poker can be a good thing. We not only looked at their apps but how well their apps run. An online poker site in Pennsylvania could get a lot of points for having a good app in place.
These are the same criteria we used when we evaluated the online poker sites in Delaware and West Virginia. We have found them to be a reasonable way to rate casinos.
The Legality Of Playing Poker Online In Pennsylvania
For most of Pennsylvania’s history gambling was illegal. Then horse racing parks sprang up and people got a taste for it. A few years ago, they legalized online gambling and poker playing. To operate an online casino in Pennsylvania you have to get a license. Then they state will closely monitor your operations and make sure you offer only fair rules and don’t stack the house against you.
When you play at online poker sites in Pennsylvania it is important that you only use a site that has a license to operate in the state. If it doesn’t have a license, then it is probably a scam site set up just to take your money – and if you win, you’ll see nothing in return.
At captaingambling we have only reviewed sites that are fully licensed to operate in Pennsylvania. That way you don’t have to waste your own time researching if a site is a legal one to play poker at.
Instead, you can just kick back and enjoy playing poker in PA and not worry about if the site is a safe place to gamble at or not. If we don’t list a site you have found, then it probably isn’t legal, and you should go somewhere else to play. You don’t want to risk getting malware on your computer of the site stealing your money from you.
But at the end of the day if you use one of our sites for online poker in Pennsylvania you should feel safe and know that it’s entirely legal.
Playing Poker In Pennsylvania On Casino Apps
Apps are the wave of the future. And that’s no different when you are playing poker in PA. While it can be nice to sit at home with the big screen of your desktop or laptop if you are into poker, you’ll probably want to play much more often than that.
That’s where apps come in. Apps are mini-programs on your cell phone or portable device. You get them by searching through at the app store for Google or Apple devices. All apps for gambling sites in Pennsylvania should be free. You should not have to pay any money at all to install them.
Once they are on your phone you should be able to just click on them to launch the Pennsylvania online poker site where you want to play. Some apps are better than others. But all of them should support you while you are playing poker.
How well the app performs when you are online is a factor when we give a ranking to a poker site in Pennsylvania. That’s because as time goes by, we believe more and more people will be playing on their phones and laptop and desktop users will begin to decline.
If you have not tried using an app to play poker yet we strongly encourage you to try one out now and see if it might be the next wave of gambling for you.
When Playing Online Poker In Pennsylvania, Do It Safely and Securely
Safe and responsible gambling is of utmost importance to us here at Captain Gambling, wether it be poker, sports betting or casino gaming. It goes without saying that you should gamble responsibly, and all reputable gambling sites have plenty of measures and affiliates in place to help ensure things don’t get out of hand.
What we’re going to advise you on, is how to ensure your gambling experience is safe and secure with regard to your funds and your personal data and information. First of all, you should change your passwords regularly to protect yourself from hackers and scammers. Secondly, you should also make sure they site you’re using has an SSL certificate to protect your personal data and information. Additionally, you should make sure the gambling site you are using is properly licensed and regulated by an official regulatory body in the state of Pennsylvania. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, you should budget, control your finances and have fun.
Consider Trying Social Poker Before You Take On The Real Thing
There are sites out there that will allow you to play poker online without betting real money. If you want to play online poker in Pennsylvania but are new to the game that’s probably where you can start out. You can play against other players but not bet any real cash. Here is where you’ll be able to hone your skills. That will give you a better chance of winning when you feel comfortable enough to make the move to online gambling sites where you have to bet real money.
That way you can test out the strategies you want to employ without risking any of your own cold, hard cash.
How Old Do You Have To Be To Play Online Poker In Pennsylvania?
You must be at least 18 years of age to participate in any type of gambling in Pennsylvania. Online poker is considered a type of gambling. If you are not at least 18 years of age don’t play. If you do play you risk having the online gambling provider sealing your profits. They may also report you to the authorities. It’s just not worth it. Wait until you are older.
What Are My Chances Of Winning At Online Poker?
That’s really up to you. Poker is a mix of skill and luck. Putting the odds on any given hand is impossible to do. The more you play poker online the better you will get at it. That will increase your odds of winning. That said even the best player can end up having a series of bad hands. You have to factor that into things when you are setting up your budget. In poker, unlike most online casino offerings, the odds really come down to just how well you play.
Is Texas Hold ‘Em The Only Type Of Poker I Can Play Online In Pennsylvania?
No. At many online casinos, you can play variations of five-card draw. In these games, you play against the dealer. Jacks Or Better is a good example. Usually, you have to get at least a pair or three of a kind in order to win. All of these games have various odds that you can look up before you play the game. These games are much more based on luck rather than skill but can be a fun way to pass the time.
Can I Get Credit From An Online Casino In Pennsylvania?
No. Unlike brick and mortar casinos, online casinos cannot extend you credit. Instead, you have to play with the cash you have on hand or else your credit card. We recommend only betting what you can afford to lose. It’s not a great idea to go into debt simply to play poker online. If you are low on cash in a given month there are always the social sites where you can play for free.
Are There Online Sites Connected To Brick And Mortar Casinos?
Yes, there are. Several online poker sites are run by the same companies that offer the real casino experience. Harrah’s, for example, offers ways to play poker online. Some people prefer these casinos because it gives them a sense that there is a physical presence for the casino where they’re playing poker.