South Africa Poker FAQ

With online poker on the rise in South Africa, we know players have many questions. Therefore, here you’ll find answers to most of the commonly asked ones in our South African online poker FAQ.

Do I have to deposit money to play online poker?

No, you do not. Most of the best online poker sites allow you to play for 'play money', and this is a good way for beginners to practice playing poker online before making a real money deposit. Online poker sites in South Africa will also offer freerolls. These are tournaments which are free to enter but offer real money prizes.

Can I play in Rand?

Unfortunately it is not possible to play in Rand at present. However many South Africa poker sites will allow you to deposit and withdraw in Rand, and they will make the conversion to and from US Dollars themselves.

Do I have to download software?

A number of online poker sites for South African players will offer a browser based client in addition to downloadable software. The non download software lets you play online poker in your browser just by entering your login details, and it is fully encrypted to ensure you can play safely and securely.

Can I play on my mobile?

The non download options for online poker sites mean you can play on many different mobile devices as well as on a desktop or laptop computer. In addition to this, some of the best poker sites have native mobile clients that you can download from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store, then just load them up to play on your mobile or tablet device.

Are international poker sites safe?

Just because a site is licensed offshore doesn't make it any less safe. All the online poker sites we have recommended here at have been subject to stringent tests and checks before being awarded a license in an offshore jurisdiction, and our team of reviewers has independently checked them out to ensure that they are safe and secure.

Do you need a fast internet connection to play?

This depends on how frequently you want to play online poker. If you want to play several tables at a time, for long periods of time, then a fast internet connection will undoubtedly be a benefit. However a slower connection will not prohibit you from enjoying great online poker sites, and should be no problem whatsoever if you're just playing one table at a time.

What types of poker can I play?

Every online poker site will offer No Limit Texas Hold'em poker, the most popular variant and the form of poker you will be most familiar with if you watch broadcasts like the World Series of Poker Main Event on television. Other formats you are likely to come across include:

Limit Hold'em (where you get two cards but can only bet a pre-set amount)

Pot Limit Omaha (where you start with four cards but have to use exactly two)

Seven Card Stud (where you are dealt up to seven cards and have to make a five-card hand)

Razz (similar to stud, but the lowest hand wins)

Can I play in tournaments?

All good online poker sites for South African players will allow you to play tournaments as well as cash games. Poker players using these sites will have a choice of scheduled tournaments, which start at a pre-designated time, and 'Sit-n-Go' tournaments, which have a set number of seats and start as soon as all of those seats are filled.

Are there many players on international poker sites?

As you might expect from sites that do not restrict players by country, international poker sites attract a great number of players. Many international online poker rooms will have thousands of players online at any one time, which of course makes it easier to find a game running at your preferred stakes.

Will I find games at every stake level?

While poker sites offer games at a wide variety of stake levels, with blinds often starting as low as $0.01/0.02, tables at higher stakes may take longer to fill up. This does not mean tables at higher stake levels are unavailable: indeed games at some of the bigger online poker sites around have been known to see players able to buy in for hundreds of thousands of dollars at a time.

Does the software require a powerful computer?

Downloadable poker software is not as bulky as it once was, and even the less powerful computers in circulation are far more powerful than their equivalents from the early days of online poker in the late 1990s and early 2000s. This means you do not need a powerful computer to play online poker, however if you find the speed of your computer proving a problem you can always play on no download browser based software, or even on your smartphone or tablet.