Real vs. Virtual Poker Rooms

by admin on March 7, 2011

This is a guest post by Matt McGuire.

One of the things people are always asking is if it is better to play poker in online poker rooms, or should they play in a real casino. The answer is mixed. Some people prefer online, while others lean towards the real casinos.

The reality is that there are pros and cons to both types of poker rooms.

Virtual Poker Rooms

The biggest advantage to playing poker in online room such as Full Tilt is convenience. You don’t have to worry about getting all dressed up, or if your car is going to make it to and from the casino, or if you should plan on spending the night. Since you don’t leave the house, none of these questions are relevant. If you have ten or twenty minutes to kill, all you have to do is log onto your account and you can start to play. Another perk is that you are the only person who knows that you are gambling.

Since online casinos are now offering tournaments; many of which can be used to qualify for larger, real world tournaments like the World Series of Poker. This gives more people a chance to qualify, but it also means that they are not learning how to read people, making it much more difficult for them to be able to read body language and know how to bluff when they get to the actual tournament.

Real Poker Rooms

The biggest problem with real world casinos is that they are not always located close to someone’s house, they are usually a destination. This means that the person has to plan when they are going to play, how they are going to get there, what they are going to wear, and how much money they are going to spend. On the other hand there are lots of advantages to the real poker rooms.

When you play poker in a real casino as opposed to PokerStars, you get to socialize while you are playing. You are meeting people; this means that even if you have lost all of your money playing cards, you have at least gotten something out of the night. When a person goes to a real casino they usually spend less. They know exactly how much money they have in their pocket and when that is gone, they quit playing. When a person is playing online, it is very easy to use credit cards to pad a dwindling bank roll and then promptly lose track of how much money you have post.

Most of the professional poker players, who regularly win big, are playing online at, but they also make an effort to play several games each month at a real casino as well. The reason for this is simple. They have to be able to read body language. This is a skill that can only be developed by watching actual people and not staring at a computer screen.

The best thing you can do is try playing in both situations and then deciding which is going to best suit you.

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