New Jersey has offered legal online poker since 2013. The state signed a compact in 2018 that shares a player pool with Delaware and Nevada.
We, at PlayNJ, will cover several topics regarding New Jersey’s evolving online poker market, including how to play for real money.
Best online poker sites for real money in 2023
How to play real money poker in New Jersey
New Jersey requires all online poker players to be within its state boundaries. The Garden State’s gaming laws don’t cover other states, which is why it’s essential to ensure real money players are within NJ.
Online poker websites use geolocation software to determine one’s whereabouts. This process doesn’t work 100% of the time, but it does appropriately locate players in most cases.
Players should thoroughly research poker sites when they’re in New Jersey and ready to start playing. Reviews, such as ours at PlayNJ, are helpful tools in finding quality operations.
Players should, of course, visit the sites themselves to see what’s available. This process will provide a feel for the software, game selection, stakes, promotions, and more.
After finding a good site, the next step is to register for an account. Operators ask for each player’s name, email, home address, date of birth, mobile number, and Social Security number.
New Jersey also requires the Social Security number for both verification and taxation purposes. Sites may also request a photo ID and/or utility bill for further identification.
Top online poker sites for real money in 2023
The New Jersey internet poker market features seven sites:
- BetMGM Poker
- 888 Poker
- Borgata Poker
- Pala Poker
We’ve thoroughly studied each operator and have determined the following three are the industry’s best.
1. WSOP.com NJ
WSOP.com is a reliable site in multiple areas including promotions, software and tournaments. It also boasts the market’s best liquidity, thanks to a deal where WSOP shares players with 888 (i.e., the WSOP/888 network).
Many NJ players appreciate being able to compete for World Series of Poker (WSOP) gold bracelets through this site. WSOP.com features multiple gold-bracelet events every summer.
Its desktop and mobile software are well designed, but the poker app is fairly basic and could use more features.
2. PokerStars NJ
PokerStars NJ offers players the choice between two bonus deals when they first join the site. Each deal has its own merit, so you simply have to decide which one suits your personality better
Your first option is to receive $100 in free play when you play one hand of poker. PokerStars will award you with three chests worth a total of $50 described below:
- Day 1: 2 x $5 Spin & Go tickets
- Day 3: 2 x $5 Spin & Go tickets and 1 x $10 ticket
- Day 5: 2 x $10 tickets
100% up to $600
If you prefer a more robust opportunity, you can instead qualify for a 100% deposit match up to $600. Simply use promotional code STARS600 when you make your first deposit in order to trigger the bonus.
Then, you will need to start playing. For every 140 redemption points you earn, PokerStars will release $10 of the bonus into your account. You earn 5 redemption points for every $1 in rake or fees that you pay.
If you can’t or don’t want to claim the full amount of the bonus, don’t worry. For 60 days after the first deposit, you can make two additional deposits that are eligible for the same match. Make sure to use the STARS600 code to activate them, however.
In either case, you will also receive a ticket to the Depositor Freeroll, which runs at 6:00 p.m. ET on the last Sunday of each month. You will also get 1 million in Play Money chips.
3. BetMGM Poker
BetMGM is the signature online product for a joint venture between MGM Resorts International and GVC Holdings. So, it makes sense that companies of that stature could afford fairly generous bonus offers for new players.
The first bonus that new players on BetMGM can earn up to $75 in tournament tickets for free play. As a perk for making your first deposit. You just need to enter a promo code PLAYNJFREE.
The $75 tournament ticket bonus works out like this:
- Deposit between $10 – $499 and you will receive $25 in Tournament Tickets (one $20 Tournament Ticket and one $5 Tournament Ticket) for Free Play.
- Deposit between $500 – $999 and you will receive $50 in Tournament Tickets (one $20 Tournament Ticket, two $10 Tournament Tickets, and two $5 Tournament Tickets) for Free Play.
- Deposit $1,000 and you will receive $75 in Tournament Tickets (two $20 Tournament Tickets, three $10 Tournament Tickets, and one $5 Tournament Ticket) for Free Play.
BetMGM uses a point system known as iRewards as a method to track your play volume online. Every $1 in rake or tournament fees that you pay is worth 5.5 iRewards points.
In order to release the $10 in cash, you must accrue a single iReward point. Obviously, the tournament dollars go to buy-ins for tournaments.
Deposit Bonus 100% up to $1,000
BetMGM also has an extremely generous deposit match for first time depositors. When you make your first deposit, be sure to use promotional code PLAYNJFREE in order to claim the offer.
The deal is that BetMGM will match the entirety of your first deposit up to $1,000. BetMGM will release the bonus to you in 10 equal portions.
While that maximum is higher than at most online poker rooms, there are a couple of catches associated with claiming the bonus. The first thing is that you will have to earn 20x your bonus amount in iRewards points in order to release it.
So, were you to realize the full amount possible for the bonus ($1,000), you’d have to earn 4,000 iRewards points for every 10% bump ($200 x 20). Earning that many points may not be something you’re interested in pursuing.
You also have a rather short timeframe to accomplish the goal. Any unclaimed bonus reverts to BetMGM 7 days after you activate the bonus.
So, be realistic about the volume of play you can undertake in a week when you claim
4. 888 Poker NJ
The 888 Poker site stands out with its frequent promotions. It gives players a chance to enter plenty of freerolls and earn high rakeback.
This site also features good traffic due to the partnership with WSOP.com. Its relatively high liquidity allows 888 to offer quality tournaments.
One downside is 888 Poker’s software could use an update. The software’s look and features lag well behind what PokerStars offers.
5. PartyPoker NJ
PartyPoker NJ offers a terrific one-two combination of bonuses for new players. Both are accessible as a welcome bonus and can be a great bump to your bankroll from the start.
PartyPoker is both a poker site and online casino, so it wants you to experience all that it has to offer. So, just for signing up, you can receive $25 in bonus money to use on various parts of the site.
After completing registration, you will receive bonus money in the following amounts:
- $10 for cash games and fastforward
- $10 for casino games and slots
- $5 for tournaments
There’s really not much to it. You can get started today, but that’s not the only offer on the table at Party.
100% Match up to $1,000
You can also get an extra $1,000 on your first deposit into Party. After registering, simply make a deposit to activate the bonus.
PartyPoker will pay out your bonus money to you in 10 equal payments. These releases will come as you earn points through your play.
Every 4 points that you earn through poker and every 8 points in casino games will be worth $1 of bonus money. You earn 2 points for every $1 in fees and rake that you pay. So, as you build your bankroll, Party will be doling out increments of your initial deposit to you. Don’t miss out.
6. Borgata Poker
There are two great sign-up bonuses available on Borgata Poker that you can use to your advantage.
The first bonus is up to $75 in tournament tickets for free play on deposit.
In order to claim this bonus, you simply need to register for an account and make your first deposit. While entering your information, make sure to enter promo code PLAYNJ to activate the deal.
You will have to begin the process of earning loyalty points (known as iRPs) in order to release this bonus for withdrawal. You need 1 iRP to get the $10 in cash, and 40 iRPs for the poker bonus.
You earn iRPs through your play in cash games and tournaments. Every $1 of rake or fees that you pay will net you 2 iRPs.
Deposit Bonus 100% up to $1,000
The other bonus that you can get at BorgataPoker is a fairly sizable deposit match. Borgata will go dollar-for-dollar on your first deposit up to $1,000.
All you have to do is make an account and a deposit to get started. As was the case with the ticket bonus above, use promo code PLAYNJ to activate this offer.
As you play, Borgata will dispense the bonus to you in 10% increments. You will need to earn 4 iRPs for every dollar of bonus that you need to release, so plan accordingly. Earning 2,400 iRPs for the full amount of bonus (or $1,200 in rake) might not be realistic for everyone.
Still, this bonus can serve as a nice little bump every so often as you play on Borgata.
Is it safe to play online poker for real money in NJ?
Yes, New Jersey features a legal and regulated online poker market. New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) regulates the Garden State’s sites.
The DGE thoroughly vets every operator before issuing them an Internet Gaming Permit. Part of the process includes ensuring each site offers fair play. The DGE tests each operator’s poker software to confirm the random number generator offers results based on a 52-card deck.
Some players may confuse NJ real money poker rooms with offshore poker rooms. The latter are unlicensed sites that don’t undergo rigorous software testing.
What are the advantages of playing real money poker online?
New Jersey features a big, land-based poker hub in Atlantic City, but many players are enjoying the benefits NJ real money online poker offers.
Here are some key advantages to playing poker with real cash.
Poker is one of the slowest games in land-based casinos. Dealers must physically shuffle and deal cards, which is a time-consuming process.
In contrast, software shuffles and deals online poker hands within microseconds. The sites also provide players with a timer on decisions, which prevents taking minutes.
These aspects speed up the action, with the average ring game featuring around 50 hands per hour. This amount is approximately double the number of hourly hands gamblers play in land-based poker rooms.
New Jersey poker sites don’t need to cover salaries for dealers and other floor staff. They, therefore, don’t take as much rake from games.
Players can check rake charts at poker sites to see how much is collected from cash-game pots. They’ll find the rake is much lower than what’s featured at land-based venues.
Online poker doesn’t require players to travel anywhere. It instead offers a fast way to start playing the game immediately.
Rounders merely need a mobile device or computer and a working internet connection to begin. As long as one is 21 years of age or older and located within New Jersey’s boundaries, he or she can start playing right away.
Internet poker rooms don’t close in the twilight hours or for holidays like many land-based locations. They’re instead open 24 hours a day.
This constant availability ensures NJ players can enjoy poker whenever the urge strikes them. They also don’t need to worry about being forced to stop playing when the casino closes.
Ability to multi-table
Poker sites in New Jersey offer the ability to multi-table, which involves playing multiple poker tables simultaneously.
Multi-tabling is great for successful players who want to increase their edge. It’s also nice for those who crave more action than a single table can provide.
Micro stakes available
The lowest no-limit stakes offered in Atlantic City are $1/$2. NJ sites go even lower by featuring $0.01/$0.02 no-limit tables.
These micro-stake games are popular among recreational players who want real money action without assuming much risk.
Free online poker
Poker sites allow visitors to play for free as long as they’re registered members. Players receive play-money chips that they can use to compete in these games.
Free internet poker doesn’t offer the same competition and intensity as the real money version, but it can be a relaxing way to enjoy the game and try out a poker room’s software.
Types of real money poker games
New Jersey used to feature a limited selection of variations. PokerStars changed this situation, though, when they entered the market.
PokerStars offers the most extensive variety of games:
- Texas Hold ’em
- Omaha Hi-Lo
- Pot-Limit Omaha
- Eight game
- 2-7 triple draw
- Seven-card stud
- Lottery-style Spin ‘n Go’s
Other sites offer a basic mix of Texas Hold ’em, seven-card stud and Omaha. The stud games don’t typically get much action across the board.
Real money cash games begin at $0.01/$0.02 and go up to $100/$200. Most players stick to the lower stakes, ranging from $0.01/$0.02 to $1/$2.
WSOP NJ gives players a chance to compete in online WSOP tournaments, with each event offering a coveted gold bracelet.
No deposit options for real money poker rooms in NJ
A no deposit casino bonus awards real-money funds just for completing account registration. Players don’t need to make a deposit to claim these offers.
No deposit bonuses are quite rare in online poker, but you can find this offer sometimes on New Jersey online poker sites. For example, right now Partypoker offers new players $25 in bonus money just for signing up.
You can’t cash out your bonus until you’ve met through the play through requirements. To do this, you will need to earn loyalty points. Poker sites offer loyalty points based on the amount of rake a cash game takes in or the tournament fees you pay.
Best bonus offers for real money players
Each New Jersey poker site offers a welcome bonus to entice new customers, but not all of these deals are created equal.
Here are the best offers of the bunch.
888 Poker NJ
The 888 Poker bonus features a 100% match bonus of up to $1,500, plus $20 free.
The $20 no deposit bonus is split up as follows:
- $4 for cash games
- $6 in tournament tickets
- $10 in casino funds
The cash and tournament tickets expire seven days after a player places his or her deposit. Players can withdraw winnings from the no-deposit bonus immediately; however, they must release the original bonus funds by earning three status points for every dollar.
Players earn one status point for every $0.50 paid in cash-game rake or tournament fees. They therefore only need to spend $1.50 in rake to get each bonus dollar.
The 888 match bonus truly stands out, because it’s the largest one in the market. Players receive the funds in $10 increments whenever they collect 100 bonus points. They earn one bonus point for every $0.50 paid in tournament fees or cash-game rake.
Players are essentially paying $5 in rake/fees to unlock every $1 (100 / 10 x 0.5). This rate is equivalent to a 20% rakeback deal, which isn’t great in comparison to other NJ sites.
However, the key reason to choose 888’s deal is the sheer size of the offer. High-volume players should consider depositing enough to take advantage of the maximum $1,500 bonus.
The WSOP.com poker bonus is a 100% deposit match bonus of up to $1,000, plus up to $100 in Bonus Play on deposit.
The free play bonus will be distributed as follows:
- Deposit $10-$250: Receive a $25 bonus
- Deposit $251-$500: Receive a $50 bonus
- Deposit $501-$999: Receive a $75 bonus
- Deposit $1000: Receive a $100 bonus
The offer also includes:
- Entry into a 2023 WSOP $10,000 Main Event Seat Package Drawing
- Seven Welcome Week Freeroll Tickets
Match bonus funds are cleared by earning Action Player points, which are loyalty points at WSOP.com.
Here’s how players can release the bonus:
- $1 for every 10 Action Player points, up to the first $10.
- $5 for every 50 points, up to the next $50.
- $10 for every 100 points, for the remainder of the bonus.
Players have 60 days from their first deposit to release as much of the bonus money as possible. Anything left after two months will expire.
PokerStars gives players a choice between one of two bonus options:
- $100 in free play when you play 1 hand
- A 100% match bonus of up to $600
One must play a hand to claim the $100 in free play. Low-stakes players should consider this deal, given that it’s a free bonus.
The 100% match bonus of up to $600 doesn’t look so impressive when pitted against the 888 and WSOP offers, but players only need to pay $2 in rake for every $1 in bonus funds. This rate works out to an outstanding 50% rakeback deal.
New PokerStars NJ customers also receive 1 million play-money chips and a ticket to the “$5,000 Depositors Freeroll.”
How to deposit and cashout at real money sites
New Jersey poker sites collectively offer a large amount of deposit and cashout methods. ACH, credit cards, debit cards, e-wallets and cash at the casino cage are all available.
Credit cards are an easy way to fund an online poker account. The catch, though, is that credit cards reject deposits at a higher rate than any other banking option.
Playing internet poker for money is perfectly legal for those at least 21 years and older, but Visa and Mastercard are still apprehensive about approving gambling-related transactions.
ACH is the gold standard for depositing at NJ sites. This option, which transfers funds from a player’s checking account, is easy to use and doesn’t require fees.
E-wallets, like Neteller and Skrill, are popular because they can be used for both deposits and withdrawals. The downside, however, is that e-wallets carry high processing fees.
Cash at the casino cage also lets players deposit and withdraw money. You must physically visit the Atlantic City casino associated with the poker site to do so.