Best Poker Bonus Offers
Almost every poker site online offers a sign-up bonus for making your first deposit. But not all bonuses are created equal. At PokerListings we’ve worked painstakingly hard to handpick the ones where you can get a great value poker bonus with little hassle.
There are a variety of factors to consider when looking for the top online poker bonus. First of all the size of the bonus is obviously important as some sites will match your deposit up to several thousand dollars.
You usually have to hit a pre-set criteria to unlock your bonus which means you have to generate a set number of frequent player points. Some poker bonuses are very easy to unlock but not very big' smaller bonuses worth $10 or $20 can be a better deal for casual players.
As the biggest online poker guide PokerListings is in a unique position to negotiate the best sign-up bonuses for our players. Click one of the links below (or on our review page) to create and account and be eligible for our world-best poker bonuses!
Best Poker Bonus Offers
|Rank||Poker Site||Rating||Best Sign-Up Bonus||Why?||Play Now|
|1.||7.3||Regular: Flat $500||
||Play Now Free Download|
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Whether you're an aspiring pro in the early stages of your poker career or just a casual, turbo SNG loving recreational player popping in for some action after work, it’s important to practice good bankroll management.
Simply put, everyone wants to make their money last longer at the poker table. Maybe even never having to deposit again after the first time.
It might not be such a huge priority for the casual layer but if you're hoping to make a career of it your focus should be 1) improving your game and 2) keeping your bankroll alive.
As far as part 2 goes, a good poker bonus can make all the difference!
Why Poker Bonuses Matter
Poker bonuses were created by the best online poker sites to help attract new players to their respective sites.
If you play with the best bonuses the poker sites have to offer, your chances of keeping that first bankroll alive will grow dramatically.
When you play with a poker bonus the poker sites will basically give you money for every hand you participate in. On some poker sites it will even be for every hand you are dealt!
Obviously, this increases your chances of becoming a winning player quickly and gives you an opportunity to build a sizable bankroll.
The Poker "Welcome" Bonus - aka the Poker Sign-Up Bonus
There are a variety of poker bonuses available on every poker site. The most common bonus is the welcome or "deposit match" sign-up bonus.
If you sign up and open a new account at an online poker site the site will usually match a percentage of your initial deposit and give you that amount on top of your deposit.
The match percentage is applicable all the way to $600 so if you deposit the full $600 you'll be eligible for another $600.
Some ambitious poker sites, such as Tiger Gaming, have even gone so far as to offer match bonuses at 100% up to $2,500!
These bonuses are typically not "instant" bonuses as most online poker sites want to see players actually spend some time at the tables.
There are also instant "no-deposit" sign-up bonuses where players immediately receive a set amount of free cash after signing up, but they are rarer. It’s usually a much smaller amount but it can be worth it if you want instant gratification.
One example of a good free poker bonus is the $8 instant bonus offered at 888 Poker right now. This money is immediately added to your account with no deposit required.
Most sites also offer reload bonuses from time to time for players looking to make another deposit and beef up their accounts. These bonuses are usually less than the initial sign-up bonus but still offer some extra incentive to get money online.
Exclusive Poker Bonuses
The info in the toplist above will help you find the best poker bonuses online at the moment. By using our exclusive poker bonus codes you will earn yourself the absolute best bonuses available in the industry, taking into account both percentage match and maximum amount.
Thanks to our long history in the industry and long-standing partnerships with some of the biggest online poker sites in the world we've been able to acquire some of the best, most exclusive welcome bonuses for our players.
Players who sign up using a PokerListings link or code not only get a big deposit match but are sometimes entered into exclusive tournaments where the field is tiny.
Don't underestimate the value of free tournaments when you are building your bankroll! This will help you to become a winning player and get through the most crucial part of a poker player's career.
What’s the Best Poker Bonus?
Almost every online poker site offers a sign-up bonus of some sort but not all are created equal. Some bonuses may sound enticing with hundreds of free dollars up for grabs but the biggest bonuses usually take much longer and require more hands to unlock.
On the other hand there are some smaller bonuses in the $50-$100 range which are much easier to access. Sometimes there are even no-deposit sign-up bonuses that will credit you with a few bucks without having to make any kind of deposit whatsoever.
Usually the no-deposit bonuses are much, much less than the percentage matches but they are better than nothing if you don't have the time to unlock your huge bonus.
It’s important to research the various welcome, sign-up and no-deposit bonuses and pick the one that’s right for you. In other words: make sure you’re actually going to play enough hands to receive a piece of the bonus.
How to Unlock Your Poker Bonus
As mentioned above, welcome or sign-up bonuses are not always immediately accessible. Online poker sites want people to actually play on their sites so they hold the bonus (or a portion of it) in a "pending bonus" account until players have recorded a set number of real-money cash game hands or real-money tournaments.
Generally the bonuses are awarded in $5-10 increments based on how many frequent player points you earn. You can unlock your poker bonus playing any kind of real-money poker.
Many people like turbo Sit & Go's for generating frequent player points but cash games are also good. The best are fast-fold poker cash games where you'll burn though tons of hands in a short matter of time.
Try to avoid big MTTs unless you are going to play a lot of them. It’s also important to note that some poker weclome bonuses have time restrictions and will eventually expire if you don’t play enough hands in a certain time period.
Poker Bonus FAQ
What is a Poker Bonus?
A poker bonus is simply a cash reward from an online poker site to players who make a deposit and play real-money poker hands.
Why Do Online Poker Sites Offer Bonuses?
Poker rooms generate revenue from collecting a small percentage from each pot in cash games or by charging a small entrance fee in tournaments in addition to the buy-in.
This is called rake. More players equal more rake, and getting a lifetime customer is incredibly valuable to every online poker site.
To keep bringing in more players, poker sites will front players bonus cash so they have a better chance of building a bankroll and continuing to play at the poker site. It's a win-win situation for both sides.
What Kinds of Poker Bonuses Are There?
There are a variety of poker bonuses but most boil down to four categories:
1) Match Bonus
These are by far the most common bonus offers. Essentially with a match bonus, the poker site matches the amount of your deposit up to a certain amount.
For example if you deposited $100 the poker room would give you an extra $100 on top of that. Most sites will match 100% of your deposit depending on the amount.
Most online poker sites will usually have a minimum and maximum amount they will match. In general the sites stick close to a minimum deposit of $10-$50 while the maximum can be in the thousands.
Keep in mind that most match bonuses are not awarded instantly and you have to play a certain number of hands on the site to "release" them.
2) Reload Bonus
From time to time rooms will offer a "Reload" bonus to its players. A reload bonus is simply a cash reward for a player who deposits more money into his or her account. Usually this follows the same matching format as the initial deposit, albeit it's usually for less money.
Like the sign-up match bonus, you don't receive the money instantly. It's released the same way as the initial sign-up match bonus - by playing a set number of real-money poker hands.
3) Instant Sign-Up Bonus
These are rare but some online poker sites will offer instant cash when you sign up. This money is deposited directly into your online poker account. Usually it's a small amount of cash in the $1-$10 range.
4) Referral Bonus
A referral bonus, which is called a "Refer-a-Friend" bonus on some sites, is given to players who personally get other players to sign up at the same poker site. Bonuses are usually in the $25-$50 range and are dependent on how many hands the player you referred ends up playing.
How Do I "Clear" My Poker Bonus?
Just because you sign-up for a poker bonus doesn't necessarily mean you're going to get it. The untold secret of the online poker bonus is that you have to play a number of raked hands to actually receive the cash.
Players earn frequent player points based on the amount of rake they pay and earning the right amount of FPPs is usually what unlocks bonuses. Some bonuses are released in increments (the standard seems to be $10 at a time) and some are released as a lump-sum payment when a player has earned a certain amount of FPPs.
For instance at one of the most popular online poker sites a player has to earn approximately 1,667 FPPs to clear a $100 match bonus. Difficult? Yes. Impossible? No.
How Do I Sign Up Using a Poker Bonus Code?
There are generally two ways to sign up for a poker bonus.
1) Deposit Code
A deposit code is usually a combination of numbers and letters that you enter when you are going through the signing up process. There will be a field that asks for a deposit code or bonus code and as long as you enter the correct code you'll be eligible for a bonus.
2) Download Link
This method is even easier than a deposit code. You simply click a link on a site that offers poker bonuses and you're eligible for the bonus.
What's the Best Way to Clear My Bonus?
The bottom line is that you're going to need to play a number of raked hands to clear your poker bonus. But there are several tricks that can help you reach your goal faster and easier. Here are some tips to get you started:
1) Bigger Can Be More Difficult
As a general rule, the larger the bonus is the harder it is to clear. If you don't want to spend a lot of time at the tables grinding you may want to stick to a smaller bonus in the $10-$50 range. Then again with many bonuses paid out in increments, it may not hurt you to aim big.
2) Read the Rules
Make sure you understand how many days you have to clear your bonus. This is obviously important if you want to have a shot at getting all of the bonus cash.
Take a look at the expiration date of your bonus and then calculate how much poker you plan to play in that time. Some rooms also offer "Happy Hour" specials where you can earn twice the FPPs during select times.
3) Choose the Bonus for You
There are a wide variety of bonuses out there so make sure you chose the one that's best suited to your style of play. Consider factors like expiration time of the bonus, amount of FPPs required to clear the bonus, difficulty in generating FPPs and whether the bonus is paid out in a lump sum or in increments.
A $500 lump-sum bonus isn't going to do you any good if you are nowhere near the 5,000+ FPPs required to clear it. You might be better off taking a tiny instant bonus of $5-$10.
4) Put in the Time
The bottom line is that if you want some of that free cash then you're going to have to get out there and play!
Where Should I Sign Up for My Poker Bonus?
We're obviously biased at PokerListings.com but we don't use the slogan "World's Best Poker Deals" for nothing. Securing the absolute highest sign-up bonuses from the biggest and best online poker sites in the world has been our primary goal since entering the industry.
Don't take it from us, however, go ahead and search the internet for other top affiliates. We think you'll be hard-pressed to find better sign-up bonuses. Check above this article to see some of our best offers.
How Do I Know How Many Frequent Player Points I Have?
You should be able to get a frequent player point total in the cashier tab on most sites.
Some sites show your FPP totals in real-time so it can be fun to leave the window open and watch your points accumulate while playing. This also gives you a good idea about how fast you generate FPPs.
Once you have a certain number of FPPs you'll be able to exchange them for merchandise in the online store, free poker tournament tickets or even cash back. Find out more about playing free poker online.