Video Poker

Video poker has long been one of the most popular casino games. It’s an institution at both land-based and online casinos.

Internet casinos present an extensive range of video poker games. Some even feature dozens of variations.

Gaming sites also offer unique bonuses that help pad your winnings. Deposit bonuses can be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

The following guide will help you to choose the top online video poker casinos. It’ll also provide you with information on bonuses, the best-paying games, and strategies.

Best video poker casinos

Best video poker casinos

#NameInfoScore
1
All Star Slots
All Star Slots
400% up to $4000
8.59 Play
2
Uptown Aces
Uptown Aces
250% up to $2500
8.53 Play
3
Desert Nights
Desert Nights
250% up to $2550
7.51 Play
4
SlotoCash
SlotoCash
200% up to $2000
7.18 Play
5
Da Vinci's Gold
Da Vinci’s Gold
100% up to $1000
6.91 Play

Criteria for determining the top video poker casinos

We’ve researched numerous online casinos to bring you the best of the best regarding video poker. You can refer to the list above when looking for the top video poker sites.

Of course, you may be wondering exactly how we separate the elite from the pedestrian. We use the following criteria when judging real-money video poker sites.

Game selection

The video poker world features dozens of variations. We don’t expect every casino to offer 50+ games, but we definitely expect some variety.

The best video poker casinos offer a minimum of 10 games. Below, you can see some common variations available in online gaming:

  • 10’s or Better
  • Aces & Faces
  • All American
  • Bonus Poker
  • Deuces Wild
  • Double Bonus
  • Double Double Bonuses
  • Jacks or Better
  • Joker Poker
  • Split Way Royal

Trustworthiness

Every online casino has a history—good or bad. You absolutely want to avoid depositing at casinos in the latter category.

We thoroughly vet gaming sites to ensure that they’re not questionable. Quality internet casinos treat their customers well and resolve potential disputes in a fair and timely manner.

Security

Gaming sites carry a responsibility to protect your financial and personal details. Unfortunately, not all casinos take this obligation seriously.

Therefore, we research sites to ensure that casinos use encryption technology. Encrypted sites prevent hackers from intercepting your data.

Bonuses & promotions

Video poker bonuses aren’t as common as slots offers. However, they exist at some online casinos.

When compiling our rankings, we put heavy emphasis on casinos that feature video poker deals. After all, any casino that offers players the opportunity to cash in on extra winnings is preferable to those that do not, all other things being equal.

Customer service

Quality customer service goes hand-in-hand with successful gambling sites. Support reps should treat you with respect and make every reasonable attempt to handle your issues/questions.

Gaming sites need to feature multiple ways to contact support, including email, live chat, phone, and/or Skype.

Fast payouts

Online casinos should process cashout requests within a reasonable time period. For example, they shouldn’t take any longer than two days to process an e-wallet cashout.

Unfortunately, not all gaming sites excel at delivering your money in a timely manner. We only recommend sites that take this matter seriously and quickly process your withdrawals.

Banking options

You must place a deposit to play real-money games. Assuming you’re interested in playing for real money, then you’ll need at least one viable deposit method.

Many gaming sites offer several banking options to ensure that you can fund your account easily. Bank transfers, credit cards, cryptocurrencies, e-wallets, prepaid cards, and wire transfers are the most-commonly available options.

You may not find all of these banking methods at a single casino. However, sites must at least offer customers the option of depositing with credit cards and e-wallets.

Free vs. real money video poker

Online casinos differ from land-based casinos, in part, by giving you the option of playing free or real-money video poker. Brick-and-mortar casinos, in contrast, force you to bet on every hand.

You may wonder what the benefits are of one over the other type of video poker. The following information will help you decide whether to start out with the free or real-money version.

Real-money video poker offers excitement & big payouts

There’s no denying the frustration you might feel when you reveal a royal flush or straight flush in free-mode. You may want to kick yourself for not betting real funds sooner.

Real-money video poker lets you cash in on big hands. Ultimately, you’ll experience more excitement when playing with actual money on the line.

You can also earn bonuses when depositing cash at online casinos. Some offer significant rewards, sometimes hundreds of dollars/euros/pounds, to those players willing to deposit and wager substantial sums.

Free video poker provides risk-free entertainment & practice

When you’re new to video poker, you may struggle with strategy and/or figuring out which games you like. Consider free-mode free practice.

The free version allows you to simultaneously practice your strategy and figure out which variations you enjoy.

You might be disappointed when you win a big hand, imagining the real money you could have received, but this should be offset by the knowledge you’ve likewise avoided potentially big losses.

Many online casinos require you register for an account before playing for free. However, the amount of time it takes you to complete registration is a small cost for free video poker.

Video Poker bonuses

You can generate comps at both online and land-based casinos. However, only gaming sites offer bonuses.

These deals give you an exciting opportunity to make serious money. Below, you can learn more about the various deals that are available, along with where to locate them.

Different types of video poker bonuses

Deposit bonus

A deposit bonus is the most common video poker offer. It’s expressed as a match percentage of your deposit amount.

Here’s an example:

  • A gaming site offers a 100% match video poker bonus worth up to $500.
  • You deposit $250.
  • You’re eligible to earn a $250 bonus.

The word earn is crucial here. You must unlock bonus funds by meeting a casino’s terms and conditions.

Rollover (a.k.a. wagering requirements) is of particular importance when determining eligibility for your bonus. This term refers to how much you must wager before withdrawing a bonus.

Here’s an example:

  • You qualify for a $200 bonus.
  • Rollover is 200x.
  • 200 x 200 = $40,000

$40,000 seems like a tremendous amount of money. However, you can reach this amount without suffering heavy theoretical losses, thanks to video poker’s low house edge.

For all deposit bonuses we have gathered on online.casino, see this page.

Sticky bonus

A sticky deposit bonus is not available for withdrawal. Instead, it lets you generate winnings that can be cashed out later. 

Here’s an example:

  • A casino offers a 400% match bonus worth up to $2,000.
  • You deposit $250.
  • 250 x 4.0 = $1,000 bonus
  • Rollover is 100x.
  • 1,000 x 100 = $100,000
  • You can withdraw winnings after betting $100k.

Most sticky bonuses feature high match percentages, because they’re not actually awarding the cash amount. You may feel disappointed upon the realization that you’re not actually playing for the bonus’ listed value.

These deals also cap the amount that you can win. For example, T&Cs might state that you can’t cash out more than $200 in winnings.

Nevertheless, sticky bonuses are worthwhile under the right circumstances. They provide more money upfront than a standard (a.k.a. cashable) deposit bonus thanks to the high match percentage.

Welcome & reload bonuses

A welcome bonus is available when you first sign up and place a deposit at a casino. It can either be cashable or sticky.

Welcome bonuses are typically the biggest and most-impressive deals at a casino. They can be worth up to $1,000, and sometimes more.

Reload bonuses are cashable offers that become available after you’ve exhausted the welcome bonus. They’re not usually as big as welcome offers.

For example, a casino may offer a 75% reload bonus worth up to $75. You can still benefit from such an deal, but you won’t win anywhere near what’s available through a welcome bonus.

No-deposit bonus

To claim no-deposit bonuses, you’re only required to register an account. They give you a chance to win free money from the casino.

You can withdraw anything left over from the bonus and potential winnings after satisfying wagering requirements.

Here’s an example:

  • You register for an account and receive a $10 no-deposit bonus.
  • Rollover is 100x.
  • 100 x 10 = $1,000 must be wagered
  • You have $8 left after meeting rollover.

Technically, you can cash out the $8 now that you’ve satisfied wagering requirements. However, most gaming sites require that you meet a minimum withdrawal amount (e.g. $10).

How do you find these bonuses?

Online casinos offer far more bonuses promoting slots than video poker. Nevertheless, you can find video poker offers at many gaming sites.

Casinos discuss what games do and do not qualify for bonuses in their terms and conditions. You should visit the T&Cs page to ensure that video poker contributes to rollover.

Some sites exclude video poker entirely from bonus deals. Others reduce the amount that this game contributes towards wagering requirements (due to low house edge).

You should also view the promotions section to peruse what deals are available. Certain reload bonuses cover video poker.

Some offers require bonus codes. You’ll need to know what code, if any, must be entered when you make your deposit.

What separates quality bonuses from the rest?

Many casinos offer gaudy welcome bonuses that promise hundreds, or even thousands of dollars. You should certainly consider these deals if winning lots of bonus money is a priority.

However, you also need to consider the T&Cs governing video poker offers. Less-restrictive T&Cs help you earn bonus funds with fewer potential losses.

Here are important terms to consider when determining the value of a bonus:

  • Rollover – Lower wagering requirements are better.
  • Reduced rollover contribution – Video poker usually contributes less toward rollover than slots.
  • Excluded games – Some casinos exclude video poker from bonuses. 
  • Time to meet rollover – You must satisfy rollover within a certain timeframe (e.g. 30-90 days).
  • Max winnings – Sticky and no-deposit bonuses cap winnings at a certain amount (e.g. $150).
  • Excluded deposit methods – Many sites exclude Neteller and Skrill deposits from qualifying for bonuses.

Several terms determine the value of a video-poker offer. However, you should pay special attention to rollover.

Again, video poker contributes less to wagering requirements than slots due to the low house advantage. The key, though, is how much less.

To demonstrate, here’s a comparison between two offers:

Bonus #1

  • Bonus wagering requirements are 40x.
  • Video poker contributes 10% towards rollover.
  • 40 / 0.1 = 400x rollover

Bonus #2

  • Bonus wagering requirements are 40x.
  • Video poker contributes 20% towards rollover.
  • 40 / 0.2 = 200x rollover

The second offer is decidedly better. With this deal, you’ll wager half as much before withdrawing the bonus.

How to choose the best video poker games

Each video poker game differs from the next in terms of return to player (RTP). You’ll improve your odds of winning by knowing which games pay the most.

The following information will help you find the best-paying variations and spot critical differences in pay tables.

Learn which games offer the highest RTP

Video poker boasts plenty of variety in terms of payout frequency, bonuses, and wild cards. You may choose games based on these factors alone.

However, you should also take RTP into account. Payout percentages directly affect your chances of winning in the long run.

Most casinos offer Jacks or Better (JoB). The “full-pay” (explained later) version of JoB delivers 99.54% RTP.

You may consider sticking with this game. Full-pay JoB offers the perfect combination of high RTP and simple strategy (compared to other variants).

However, some gaming sites feature even higher-paying variations. They may offer Not So Ugly Ducks (Deuces Wild), which pays 99.73% RTP.

You can search payout percentages for new games that you encounter. Eventually, you’ll be able to quickly identify the highest-paying variations whenever you visit an internet casino.

Know the differences in pay tables

Every video poker game features different pay tables. The differences in each table usually only involve 2-3 payouts.

Here’s an example dealing with Jacks or Better:

  • JoB pay tables differ based on the full house and flush payouts.
  • 9/6 JoB offers nine coins for a full house and six for a flush.
  • 9/5 JoB offers nine coins for a full house and five for a flush.
  • 8/6 JoB offers eight coins for a full house and six for a flush.

The term full pay refers to the highest-paying variation of a given video poker game. In the above example, 9/6 Jacks or Better is the full-pay version.

The differences in each pay table are slight. However, they bear a noticeable impact on the payout percentages.

9/6 JoB features 99.54% RTP, 9/5 JoB offers 98.45% RTP, and 8/6 JoB features 98.39% RTP. The one-coin difference in full house payouts creates a 1.15% RTP discrepancy between the 9/6 and 8/6 pay tables.

If you’re going to play a certain video poker game, then you might as well pick the best pay table. You should learn the pay-table discrepancies for your chosen game.

Use video poker strategy to improve your odds of winning

Video poker payback figures only represent what’s possible with optimal strategy. Assuming you play based on hunches and feelings, then you’ll be facing lower RTP.

You must choose the best games and use proper strategy to win more often. Correct strategy gives you a stronger chance of earning profits.

We can’t make you an expert within the confines of this page. However, we can point you in the right direction with the following advice.

Place the max bet

Video poker lets you wager anywhere from one to five coins per hand. This option might seem arbitrary, but it actually makes a difference in your potential winnings.

You must wager all five coins to achieve the highest payback within a given video poker game. A five-coin maximum bet gives you more value with the royal flush payout.

The following example explains this concept:

  • 1-coin bet = 250 credits for a royal flush
  • 2-coin bet = 500 credits
  • 3-coin bet = 750 credits
  • 4-coin bet = 1,000 credits
  • 5-coin bet = 4,000 credits

The royal-flush prize increases proportionately by 250 credits from one to four coins. Following this pattern, a royal should pay 1,250 coins on a five-credit bet.

Instead, it delivers 4,000 coins—an increase of 3,000 coins when compared to the four-coin prize.

Your odds of getting a royal flush are approximately 1 in 40,000. Therefore, you can bet 1-4 coins on hands and not suffer too much.

However, you should strongly consider placing five-coin maximum bets if you want to achieve the highest RTP.

Use a video poker strategy chart

Video poker strategy revolves around choosing which cards to keep and discard during the draw round.

Your natural inclination may be to keep any made hand (e.g. pair of jacks) and discard everything else. This method of play presents a problem, though, by lowering your chances of getting the best hands.

Optimal strategy involves keeping hands/cards based on their long-term value rather than short-term payouts. You won’t automatically know which combination of cards to hold in each situation.

A video-poker strategy chart shows you exactly what cards to keep. It ranks hands by their importance.

Here’s an example:

  • You’re playing Jacks or Better.
  • You hold: Qs-Qh-9h-10h-Jh
  • You’re guaranteed a 1-to-1 payout with your queens.
  • However, the chart suggests to hold four cards to a straight flush.
  • You keep these four cards and discard the Qs.

You can find strategy charts for popular games like JoB and Bonus Poker. Unfortunately, charts aren’t available for the majority of video poker variations.

Practice with video poker trainers

A video poker trainer is a program that provides feedback while you play. If you’re training with Bonus Poker, for example, you’ll receive feedback on when you do and do not use correct strategy.

Here’s an example:

  • You’re playing Bonus Poker.
  • You hold: 10h-5d-Ac-Ah-5c
  • You keep Ac-Ah
  • The trainer suggests to keep 5d-Ac-Ah-5c.

Training programs cover a wider variety of games than strategy charts. Therefore, you can learn strategy for more variations with these tools.

Plenty of free video poker trainers exist across the internet. You can also buy programs that cover more variants.

FAQs on video poker

Which online video poker game pays the best?

Online gaming doesn’t offer the rare video poker machines that deliver over 100% RTP. These machines are only available in specific Las Vegas casinos.

However, internet gaming does feature some variations that offer close to 100% RTP. Here are the highest-paying games that we’ve found (software developers in parenthesis):

1. All Aces Poker (Microgaming) = 99.92% RTP
2. Aces & Eights (Realtime Gaming) = 99.78%
3. Not So Ugly Ducks (many providers) = 99.73%
4. 9/6 Jacks or Better (many providers) = 99.54%

Can I beat video poker?

You can only guarantee profits by using optimal strategy on games with over 100% payback. However, online video poker still gives you some of the best odds of beating the house.

Multiple games offer 99.54% RTP or higher. Assuming you learn strategy for a given variation, you stand a good chance of beating the casino.

Why do I keep losing in video poker?

Video poker is one of the most volatile games in the casino. It features a wide discrepancy in payouts from top to bottom.

Some variations offer bonus payouts that further increase the volatility. Therefore, you may experience many losing sessions before you hit a big payout or two.

You may also be choosing low-paying games and/or using poor strategy. You can refer to this guide for information on selecting high-paying variations and learning strategy.

Will I be cheated in online video poker?

You stand little chance of being cheated in internet video poker.  All reputable software providers undergo third-party testing.

Gaming auditors, such as eCOGRA and iTech Labs, ensure that software developers offer fair-and-random games. Testing labs give their seal of approval to legitimate providers.

Where can I find a video poker bonus?

Many gaming sites offer video poker bonuses. However, you may need to dig into a casino’s terms and conditions to be certain.

Video poker always contributes less to wagering requirements than slots. However, you need to ensure that your preferred game at least contributes something and counts towards bonuses.

Is online video poker legal in my country?

Your country’s laws will determine whether you can legally play real-money casino games online. Most nations either feature a regulated internet gaming market or treat online gambling as a grey area.

You can legally enjoy internet video poker in either of these cases. However, you may have trouble depositing if you’re in a grey market.

You should also check your state’s/province’s online gambling laws. Some countries (e.g. USA) let each state decide how to treat gaming.