Poker Sites by Country - Where Can I Play if Poker is Restricted in my Country?
When the internet poker boom began, it really was something of a free-for-all (as was most of the internet at that time). If you had a computer and an internet connection, then it didn't really matter where you were - you could sign up to one of the fledgling poker rooms and you would soon be sitting down at a virtual poker table playing with players across the globe.
Soon internet poker became a massive behemoth. Millions of dollars of money was passing into virtual accounts daily - and that made some governments nervous. The U.S. already had a ban on bank accounts being used online for monetary transactions involving gambling. This ban was primarily designed to prevent criminal from laundering money via online bank accounts. Poker players argued that poker wasn't gambling - that it was a game of skill just where money happened to be involved. The U.S. government did not agree, and on the notorious day that came to known as "Black Friday" (April 15, 2011), the government decreed that online poker was gambling, and PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker stopped allowing U.S. based players at their site.
Since that day, it's been a bleak poker experience for some online poker players, especially those in the U.S.
I Live in a Country Where Poker Is Restricted - What Can I do?
I am aware that many countries restrict online poker playing. As well as the United States, there are certain restrictions placed on the poker players of France, Spain and Italy. To get round this ban and to fall in line with legislation provided by those companies, some poker sites are offering special versions of their poker clients (and mobile versions) that only run in the countries of the players they are dedicated to - I've listed some of these sites below.
Other countries are far more draconian when it comes to online poker, such as Greece, Poland, Romania and Cyprus. If you're from those countries that I am afraid you're out of luck. The U.S. is slowing relaxing its ban on U.S. poker players, and allows play at approved sites. Please see the list below for some sites where U.S. players are approved.
If you live in a country where online poker playing is completely unrestricted - such as the United Kingdom and Australia - then rejoice! You can enjoy playing Texas Hold'em with other unresticted players from all over the world. I hope you will take your time to give this site a complete look-over, and that you'll find lots of informative poker articles and all you need to get going in the wonderful world of online poker. Enjoy!