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Downloading and Signing Up
Without a doubt, the best way to learn or improve at poker is to get yourself dealt into some hands. With a wide selection of poker rooms to choose from online, getting into the game has really never been easier.
Common Questions about Downloading and Signing Up
(aka: Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Getting Started But Were Afraid to Ask)
It's natural to have questions and anxieties about online poker when you're just getting started. Here are answers to some of the most common questions people have about signing up to an online poker room:
Q. Is it free?
A. Yes. All poker-room software is free to download, and it's also free to register on the room's site. Once you have the software up and running all online poker sites offer free "play-money" tables, as well as real-money tables. You can play as long as you like without ever spending a dime.
Q. Is it safe?
A. Yes. Online poker sites use the same online security measures as your bank. You are safer giving out your information to these sites than you are using your credit card to buy gas or pay for dinner in the brick-and-mortar realm. All data transfer, especially of financial information, is handled securely and electronically - there are no disgruntled waiters to rip you off online.
Q. How do I get started?
A. This is the easiest part of all. Head to our Online Poker Rooms page and read some reviews. Pick the top few sites that sound best to you. They're all free to download and try, so do just that until you find one that you really like. All of the top rooms on our list are world-class; you can't go wrong with any of them. Pick the one that gives you the best bonus.
Q. What does the downloading process involve?
A. Downloading the software is as easy as clicking "Download" and saying "Yes" or "Save File" to any Windows pop-ups that ensue. Installing is quick and easy (follow the on-screen instructions), and the software will run like any other program on your computer. Once you have the software, you can sign up for an account.
Q. What information do I have to provide to sign up?
A. All sites differ slightly in their sign-up requirements. Some require nothing more than a username, password and valid e-mail address to sign up for a play-money account. If you want to play for real money you are required to supply your name, street address, e-mail address, phone number and a valid form of payment to fund your account.
The rooms need this information for a couple of reasons: they want to make sure no one is running multiple accounts, and when real money is involved, they want to be sure that you, and only you, have control of your account.
Q. Why should I sign up through a PokerListings.com link?
A. Because we are the top online poker resource, you will get the best possible signing bonuses by signing up from our site. This means free money, including, for example, from freerolls (tournaments that are free to enter, and that pay real money to winners).
Q. What do all of these poker bonuses mean?
A. There are many types of bonuses available. Each site chooses what bonuses to offer. Players who sign up via PokerListings.com get the best bonuses available on the net - often ones that other players can't qualify for.
Each full room review on our site details all of the bonuses offered by the poker rooms, and what is required to receive them.
One of the bonuses sites offer is the first deposit bonus: the room will match the amount of your first deposit, giving you that money after you play enough hands to "release it." The more money you deposit, the more hands you have to pay to get the full amount.