Things to Know If You Want to Play Online Poker in Pennsylvania

Written by Paul Parish
Updated Apr 11, 2024

Pennsylvania is now one of the card-carrying poker states in the US, right alongside Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware. For players, this means that they can gamble at legal poker sites PA without an issue by using their desktops and smart devices.

As soon as this became an option, Pennsylvania poker rooms have been growing both in terms of popularity and number. The offerings for gamblers bloomed in 2021 when Borgata and BetMGM Poker launched their online version under the partypoker US Network. Soon after, WSOP joined this, making this game more popular than ever in the state.

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Table of content

    Gambling on Legal PA Poker Sites

    pennsylvania online pokerSince poker rooms Pennsylvania are legal and popular, there are many options for you to pick from. There are titles like No-Limit Texas Hold’em available online and live, as well as choices for Pot-Limit Omaha gamblers which are really popular with Americans these days.

    Moreover, you can find titles like Omaha Eight or Better, Limit Hold’ Em Stud, and other variants of the poker game. Depending on which of the PA state online poker sites or offshore casinos you choose, you will be spoilt of choice if you enjoy this game.

    Free Gambling vs. Real Money PA Poker Sites Play

    real money pa pokerBased on the PokerStars PA launched, players in this state can now gamble legally and with real money on their devices. This was only available in free or demo version before but today, gamblers can pick and choose between paid and free versions of the game.

    If you aren’t ready to deposit your money or want to try out the game and casino before you do, you can find plenty of demo online poker games in Pennsylvania casinos and gambling rooms. This comes without any financial risks, but also without the potential to win real money.

    Gambling for real money, on the other hand, means that you need to use your cash to bet on online poker sites for PA players with the opportunity to win if you get a winning hand.

    Live vs. Online Poker in PA Sites

    live online poker paThe main difference between online and live play is the speed of the game. Online poker can move fast while live games usually take longer. Since these games are played by over a dozen hands per hour, and dealers need to do everything manually, it can get a bit slower – but far more immersive.

    In fact, some online poker games exceed 100 hands per hour. In such cases, dealers often do not deal with the cards physically, so things go faster.

    Those with experience in this game increase their odds by gambling on multiple tables at once. This is impossible to do in real life, but it is more than possible to do when you gamble online. In fact, some bet on over 10 different games at the same time.

    Bonuses You Can Use to Play Online Poker in Pennsylvania

    bonus at pa online poker siteOne of the greatest things about betting online is the prevalence of casino promotions and bonuses. You’ll encounter different types based on which type of room you join.

    For example, if you play in live rooms, you can find a bad beat jackpot or a high hand bonus. As a new gambler on an online site, you can claim a variety of cash bonuses to use on your favourite games. However, make sure to read through the terms and conditions, as well as wagering requirements to ensure that the offer is realistic.

    The best place to play poker online for money in Pennsylvania is a site with quality gaming options, but also attractive bonuses that you can use to boost your chances at winning.

    Which are the Biggest Poker Rooms in Pennsylvania?

    Right now, there are a total of 4 online poker sites that operate in Pennsylvania. They are:

    Poker SiteNo Deposit BonusDeposit Bonus
    WSOP.COM$10100% up to $1,000
    PokerStarsPlay 1 hand, get $50 in Free Play100% up to $600
    BetMGM Poker$25100% up to $600
    Borgata Poker$25100% up to $600

    Today, the peak and average traffic numbers in such rooms exceed the numbers of New Jersey. An average PokerStars PA player count shows around 850 players online on average, while around 2,000 of them gamble during peak hours.

    The majority of players gamble on real money tables and rooms, while the rest pick other featured game variants, and join a variety of tournaments.

    In addition to these poker sites, there are casinos that hold licenses allowing them to add this game and its variants to their list of offerings. These are:

    • Parx Casino
    • Hollywood Casino
    • Wind Creek Bethlehem
    • Rivers Philadelphia

    Poker Apps, Downloads and Download on Online Poker Sites in PA

    poker apps PAMany Americans use their phones today. According to Pew Research, this number has reached 96% in the last couple of years, and most of them have smartphones. That being said, it is a prerequisite for gambling websites to optimize their features and offerings for mobile users.

    Most American poker websites offer a poker client that can be downloaded and a mobile app for smartphone users. So, if you were wondering: how can I play online poker in Pennsylvania, here are your options:

    • Download an app in the store or directly on the website. Apps are specifically designed to run on your device based on the operating system. Most are available on Android and iOS. However, keep in mind that these take up space, so you might want to free some room for them in your phone.
    • Download the site if you prefer to use your desktop. Most websites like Poker Stars offer downloadable versions for desktop players. You can find and download this from the website itself.

    Tournaments on PA Online Poker Sites in the US

    online poker sites paPA hasn’t been offering this as a legal option for a long time, so tournaments are still rare and in an early stage. However, this doesn’t mean that you cannot join tournaments in this US state. There are already some annual and weekly tournament options available on websites, such as:

    • PACOOP and PASCOOP tournament series with buy-ins between $5 and $500
    • Bounty Builder with over 30 events across two weeks and buy-ins between $10 and $750
    • Sunday Majors – five Sunday tournaments

    Gambling on Offshore Poker Websites

    pa poker websiteIn addition to the four sites mentioned above, players from PA can use other legal and safe websites. The four sites and other future websites that are licensed by the PGCB are regulated in the state, offering you higher level of security and safety. If you choose to use an offshore gambling site, you should look carefully to find a safe, well-rated place to gamble to avoid issues.

    Legalities and Rules: Is Online Poker Legal in Pennsylvania?

    pa legal pokerYes, playing various poker games is legal in this American state. It first became an option in November of 2019 and ever since, poker has been really trending in PA. This happened thanks to the vast effect of the law H 271, which opened a host of opportunities for gamblers in online casinos, sports betting, online poker, and daily fantasy sports.

    Right now, PA gamblers must compete with other gamblers located in the state, but this might change soon. The MSIGA or Multi-State Internet Gaming Agreement has allowed Delaware, New Jersey, and Nevada to mix the player pools, which might just prompt PA to do the same.

    Even though this is legal, not many have offered such gaming options because of the cost. Operators must pay a $10 million license fee to be able to operate in the state, and their gains are subject to a 16% task. To be more, each room must have a land-based partner in PA.

    To be able to gamble in PA, you must be 21 years or older. If you leave the state lines, you cannot gamble.

    FAQ About Online Poker in PA

    ❓ When are Pennsylvania poker rooms reopening?
    Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all poker rooms were forced to close in March of 2020. But, in October, they started reopening. Now all rooms are open and available to gamblers.
    👮 Is it legal to play poker online in Pennsylvania for US players?
    Yes. It is legal to play this game online in this state since 2019. Players who are located physically in the state and are at least 21 years old can gamble in one of the licensed sites.
    🤔 Are home poker games legal in PA?
    The laws regarding home poker games are still very unclear in this state. Under the law, poker is considered gambling, so it is forbidden outside of licensed venues. However, there’s no specific criminal charge for operating a poker home game just yet.
    🔒 Is it safe to gamble at legal PA poker sites?
    Yes. The four poker sites available in Pennsylvania now are registered and regulated by the Gaming Control Board, which has the authority to check and sanction them.
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