by Mario Alfonsi  |  Published on May 24, 2017  |  Updated on May 24, 2017

Poker is a game that is popular the world over, however in Europe there has been something of a revolution recently in regards to the sheer number of people that do play poker in all playing environments.One of the main reasons for the increase in number of people playing poker is that many TV channels now show live footage from poker rooms and poker tournaments, and that has sparked an interest in people who feel they have the skills and capabilities to play poker, and play it well.If you are based anywhere in Europe then you are additionally going to be blessed with a huge number of different poker sites that will allow you to sign up as a new player, and with so many people playing online these day, you are never going to have any shortages of fellow players to take on and hopefully beat too.This guide is one of many that I do hope you make use of throughout this website, and as such if you are based in Europe and you fancy your chances of being a successful poker player then please do read on, as you will find plenty of hints, tips and advice you will find of great interest and use!Anyone travelling through Europe who wants to gamble online or in a live casino should be aware of the various laws covering gaming in the different European countries. Some prohibit online gambling from sites within their borders. There are also countries that permit online gambling, but prevent their banks from processing any of the winnings.

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Why You Should Play at EU Licensed Poker Sites

I really would urge you only ever to sign up to and play at poker sites that are fully licensed and regulated in Europe if that is where you are based, for at all times you are going to have the peace of mind in knowing those poker sites are highly regulated.What each gambling commission and gaming authority is also going to have in place is a direct line of communication with their team so that if you have any problems with any of their licensed poker sites you problems can be and will be addressed.There is also the obvious fact that when you do set about playing at any EU licensed poker site you are never going to have any doubt regarding the fairness of the poker games and poker tournaments they have on offer.Plus, as all player funds are legally required to be kept in a completely segregated bank account at all EU licensed and regulated poker sites, you are never going to have any concerns about the safety and security r the accessibility of the funds you do hold in such an account, and they are at all times going to be directly accessible to you too.

European Gambling Laws

european commissionThe European Commission (EC) permits internet gambling sites with the stipulation they be licensed by countries in the EU. There are some European countries that don’t agree with this policy. There are also countries that require poker sites to become licensed within their specific country. Many new countries are starting to use that particular method of licenser but asking the poker sites to pay 3-5 years’ worth of back taxes. There are a few poker sites that are ponying up. PokerStars for instance has already paid back taxes in a handful of countries and obtained legally operating and licensed status.What it really boils down to is this though; it’s not illegal to play poker in many countries, and there are no consequences to those who do, however, the poker site itself may face a penalty if they’ve not done all that they need to do to comply with the law. This is a lot like eating at an establishment that doesn’t have a permit to serve food. You have no idea you’re doing it, and you’re probably not getting prosecuted for it, it’s not even illegal.On the other hand, there are countries, like Russia, where gambling is absolutely prohibited. Things are changing there as well with the creating of four new legalized gambling zones, but in the meantime, they’re a prime example of a ‘dry country’ when it comes to land based and online gambling.

Benefits of Localized Poker Sites

In Finland players can use sites licensed within the EU and not pay any tax on their winnings. In Sweden players can also play tax free if they use a poker site approved by the government and operates inside the EU. France has strict laws to regulate and tax gambling. Poker sites that accept French players must have a .fr domain and get a gaming license. In Russia the government has blocked all gambling sites but has established four gambling zones in the country. People in Norway can use an online gambling site if it has a license within the country. In Northern Ireland online gambling is approved, but the strict laws here make residents go to Ireland to play live poker.

Playing Live Poker in Europe

Europe offers many hot tourist options when it comes to poker play including a plethora of major poker tournament events, like the World Series of Poker Europe for instance. There are also several famous poker rooms located throughout the continent. One major thought to keep in mind is that European poker rooms often feature dress codes and much like poker rooms located in Asia, they often require players to show an international passport.

Deposit and Play in Euros

One aspect of playing poker online in Europe is that you will be much better off playing at a poker site at which you can set your account to use Euros, as that way you are never going to be faced with having to pay any currency exchange rate fees when making a deposit or a withdrawal.You should also try and make use of a deposit and withdrawal option that comes with no additional fees and charges for using them, there will be plenty of them to pick and choose from but many European players much prefer using their debit cards as a way of funding their betting site accounts online.Web wallets are another popular option, and to be fair they often allow for a poker site to pay out their winning player instantly, as soon as they have put in a withdrawal request, however you will also find plenty of other ways of topping up your account and making a withdrawal too.Just try and select a poker site that offers rapid winning pay-outs to their players or you could end up waiting a very low time to get paid out your winnings if you don’t!

Frequently Asked Questions

If you are now getting quite interested in playing poker online, and you are based anywhere in Europe, then please do read on, for I am more than confident that you may have a few questions you want answering about doing so, and there is a very good chance those questions will be answered below.

Do I have to play poker online in Euros?

If you are based in a European country that uses the Euro is its currency then you will probably be best off setting your poker site accounts to use Euros, but of not then there will be several other currency option available to you at different online European poker sites!

Can I enter European poker tournaments online?

There will be a huge ongoing schedule of different poker tournaments that you are always going to be more that welcome to take part in if you are a European poker player, and they will always be listed somewhere on a poker sites website so do take a look to see when they are up and running.

What is the most played European poker game?

It is the age old and classic poker games that is Texas Hold’em that most players in and around not only Europe but all over the world tend to play more than any other poker game variants!

Are all European poker sites busy?

It is going to be the poker sites or poker apps you choose to make use of as a European poker players that will either see you playing at some very, very busy poker sites or at one of the less busier sites, but you will always find more than enough such sites available to you.

Can I play poker in Europe via an app?

There are going to be so many different poker apps that are also available to you if you do live and reside in Europe that I would suggest if you do want to play poker on a mobile device you try out several different poker apps to help you find one you like using the most!