Poker is one of the most popular card games in the world with a long history behind. While previously, all the action was happening in smoky dark basements, now gamblers have comfortable and safe conditions for poker sessions.

In 1834, the term “poker” was mentioned in the literature for the first time.

The famous English traveler, Jonathan Green, described this game as an exciting table game for 2-4 people. Poker was very popular among the sailors, with whom Jonathan roamed the Mississippi river.

The first poker room in history

Planet Poke is the first official poker room in world history, founded by Randy Blumer in 1998. So, on 1 January 1998, the first game was held with Limit Texas Holdem, and USD 3-6 blinds. A few months later, poker sessions in Planet Poke became really long, and in February 1998, the longest game was recorded — it lasted all night long.

Limit Texas Holdem is a variation of poker, and this simple card game will be a great start learning professional poker.

The poker rooms sites components:

  • Website. Users register on the site, take part in poker sessions, and can use additional services.
  • Server. The equipment for information storage and data processing that is necessary for the interaction of players both among themselves and with a website.
  • A client program. The player downloads it on PC to play poker. It is worth noting that some poker establishments operate solely online.

World status of online poker

The attitude to online poker differs from country to country. Some states welcome virtual poker establishments, and others make every attempt to stop gambling. Here is a more detailed review of the poker rooms’ situation in the world.


Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Great Britain, Denmark, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Estonia are the countries where online poker is legal. In these states, gambling activities are permitted only under the license. Otherwise, a platform will be blocked. As for players, they have access to poker rooms within their country and international web resources. We can say that in these countries the online poker legislation is executed at advanced level.

A global indicator of the online poker market is the UK. Many poker establishments successfully operate on the country's territory, but there are only a few sites that offer excellent playing conditions. Among the most popular and proven UK resources for playing online poker are

  • Partypoker: a player gets a 100% bonus on the deposit up to USD 600, a rakeback up to 50%, and other “perks” and promotions.
  • Coral Poker: fixed 60% rakeback — the highest one in the online poker market.
  • Betfair: rakeback up to 35%, and an excellent 200% bonus on a starting deposit up to EUR 1,000.
  • Betsafe: welcome bonus of EUR 1,000 + 35% rakeback.
  • Bet365: VIP rakeback up to 57% + very weak players field, thanks to special private tables.


In the USA, the situation with online poker is quite ambiguous. The poker rooms are legal only in 4 states: Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. In 2018, according to local mass media, 4 more states got a chance to legalize online poker. These are New York, Michigan, Illinois, and Connecticut. We propose to consider the situation with poker rooms legislation in one of the USA largest states – New York.

Due to the number of people living there, New York is a very influential state. About 20 million people live there. This is almost as many inhabitants as in Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania in total.

In the case of gambling legalization in the state’s capital, impressive 10% of the commonwealth will be able to play online poker. In February 2019, the Gambling Committee of New York got a bill number A04924 on the poker rooms legalization. Following it, the license for virtual poker sites will be available to operators who already have experience in the organization of interactive games and a valid gambling permit. Entrepreneurs will be required to pay a one-time USD 10 million fee.

Also, do not forget about taxes on benefits, which is 15% of the gross income from gambling entertainment house. It is worth noting that this tax, as well as all fines for rules violations established by the Regulatory Commission, will be credited to the State Lottery Fund. At the time of writing this article, the bill on online poker legalization is under consideration.


At the legislative level, the land-based poker in Russia is allowed, but the online is prohibited. Despite this, operators always find ways to start online poker rooms and give players access to gambling entertainment. The Russian government has established a supervisory authority of Roskomnadzor to stop illegal websites activities. The main authority’s task is to eliminate illegal gambling sites, in particular, online poker. It seems to be that the authorities are not going to legalize the gambling, but based on the current situation with bookmakers' legalization – there is hope.

The largest and most affordable poker rooms in Russia and CIS countries:

  888Poker PartyPoker PokerDom PokerStars
Welcome bonus 100% bonus on a deposit up to USD 400 100% bonus on the first deposit up to USD 500 RUB 1000 bonus on the first deposit 100% bonus on the first deposit up to USD 600
Gifts No deposit bonus of USD 88 for registration USD 40 gift with start deposit from USD 10   USD 30 with a deposit from USD 20
Rakeback up to 50% up to 40% up to 50%  
MTT (Multi-Table Tournament) and cash game A wide range of MTT and cash games up to 200NL A good range of MTT and cash games up to 100NL An average range of MTT and cash games up to 200NL A wide range of MTT and cash games up to 200NL
Advantage Ongoing freerolls and promotions for players Convenient and quick cash out Beneficial payment systems for Russians; an opportunity to play on rubles High level of safety and reliability

How to open a poker room online: practical guidance

The poker room opening is not an easy task. Ambitious entrepreneurs should patiently develop a strategy, invest their own time and impressive initial funds. To understand the whole picture, we offer you to consider the stages of creating a virtual poker establishment.

STEP 1: budget planning

The first thing to do if you want to open a poker room is to plan your budget. New company registration, website development, providers' and IT-specialists' fees, advertising campaign – all these require significant investments. Besides, it is not the whole list of points that will require financial investments. It is necessary to create an expenses policy and follow it to avoid all sorts of financial inconsistencies in the business project implementation.

STEP 2: registration

In Russia, online poker rooms are prohibited, so many operators register such gambling establishments in offshore countries. An amount of business registration fee differs depending on the chosen jurisdiction. Besides, the first mandatory tax, an operator must pay annual fees to continue the business project.

STEP 3: website

The next stage involves website creation, domain acquisition, and software development. You will need high-end licensed software and prestigious test laboratories certificates. They help to gain the consumers' trust in your product. People usually choose decent resources. Thus, do not neglect quality to save some money or time. In this case, quality plays one of the fundamental factors, thanks to which a new company will be able to compete with well-known brands.

STEP 4: team recruitment

It is complicated to manage a poker site alone. Thus, to ensure the successful site operation, it is necessary to have a professional team: experienced programmers, IT specialists, and technical support consultants. On average, at least 3 specialists per 1000 users are required to work in online chat, as customers may have different questions. For example, about deposits, cash outs, etc. A well-chosen team is one of the main keys to a successful business.

STEP 5: marketing strategy development

To become competitive among renowned online poker gaming brands, you need high-quality marketing plan. When launching a new business project, it is necessary to consider its advertising, PR that will require qualified and experienced marketers. Experts will develop an effective strategy that will allow the brand to reach a new level and engage more active users.

Following the above tips, an operator will increase the new project chances to success. Do not hurry up with business implementation and spend money by buying a quality product.. The main thing is high-quality preparatory work and a well-thought-out action plan.