Hello everyone it’s Raj here to tell you about online poker sites and live poker in India. If you are an Indian, you know how much poker has really gotten popular lately. Let me first tell you that online poker is not illegal in India like so many believe!
Indian Accepting Poker Sites
There is only one poker site that accepts Indian players that we recommend, that is Betway. Not only do they have a solid offering of poker, but also casino and sportsbetting as well. They accept INR directly, as well as convenient deposit options such as Neteller an Skrill. We are constantly on the lookout for more sites, we will update this page accordingly.
These poker sites are located offshore of India. Legal issues have kept any proper assignment of an actual “Indian poker site” where all the servers and company is located in India.
Depositing at Legal Poker Sites
When you play online, depositing is a bit of an issue. Because of foreign exchange laws, it’s best to use an ewallet. Almost everyone from India chooses Skrill, Entropay, or Neteller. Neteller is easy because you can just open an account, and if you have a friend they can transfer you money instead of having to wait and put money in yourself. It’s really not hard, just takes about 5 minutes to set up.
Withdrawing Money from India Betting Sites
It’s very easy to withdraw from India, but many are concerned about it. What I did with an HDFC Bank was simply give Neteller my SWIFT code, Neteller will then ask for bank verification and I gave them my debit card details, they verified my account and I got my money in a few days. There was an option asking if it was for gaming and I said no, because it’s none of their business. I do this whether I’m playing poker, betting on sports, or playing casino games.
Indians used to withdraw using Netellers debit cards or Entropay’s plastic card, but this has been disabled for India. My suggestion would be to do a wire like I did above, or do it by check. The check can take a couple weeks but there is no fees or hassle.
The “grey” area that online gambling is perceived has led to certain circumstances such as the following. You can play at the poker sites mentioned above, but if you wanted to buy something from the online poker sites store, you wouldn’t be allowed to. They won’t deliver what you buy to an Indian address so it’s best to cash in the player reward points for money or tournament tickets.
Major live tournaments happen a few times a month and are part of “series” that run each month. The three that I know of that many play in are the India Poker Legend, Aces Unlimited, and the India Poker Series. The India Poker Series is most popular. The Buy-in amounts are usually INR 5000 to INR 100,000. No Limit Texas Holdem poker is the main game played.
Cash Games in Goa and Sikkim
People around the world still get the idea that all Indians are poor. Just going to a casino in Sikkim and playing poker you can see this is not true, and we love to gamble! I see rich business people go through 1 or 2 Lakh of Rupee very quickly and not care so there is plenty of easy money. The main games played are 100-200 Rs, with people buying in at 100 times the big blind. I am pretty sure, but not positive if it’s changed recently that the minimum buy-in is usually Rs 5000 and you can play higher at something like 100k Rs.
Indians Style of Poker
From what I have seen in India most guys will play very tight poker. They play by the book is what I mean and don’t like to bluff very much. It’s pretty easy to put them on hands, but hard to bluff them. That is just the average person, I am not talking about the pros that play in India.
Just like anywhere in the world, poker thrives underground as well and as long as you know the host or someone in the game it’s pretty easy to get in and play somewhere around where you live. The biggest games are in Delhi and Mumbai.