Online poker NZ – Best real money poker sites


If you’re seeking to learn more, this guide shows you where to play online poker for free, delving into the rules, some of the variants that are most popular, and with some handy tips about how to win.

Let’s kick off with a list of the best poker sites for New Zealand.

New Zealand’s top poker sites - February 2024

Disclaimer: We have noticed you are visiting this page from outside of the relevant state, you may not be able to access the partners on display

Rank Casino Bonus Offer Payout Speed Win Rate Play Online
#1 Top Rated Casino
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Bonus
Payout 0-1 days
Win Rate 96.26%
Deposit options include
visa
mastercard
skrill
neteller
banktransfer
paypal
  • Exclusive Deposit Bonus
  • Huge selection of Games
  • 24/7 Email and Phone Support
  • Reputable Brand
2
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0
Bonus
Payout 1-3 days
Win Rate 97.57%
Deposit options include
visa
mastercard
skrill
neteller
paypal
creditcard
    3
    nz flag
    0
    Bonus
    Win Rate 97.65%
      4
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      0
      Bonus
      Payout 1-5 days
      Win Rate 97.33%

      Play free online poker now

      If you’re still testing the waters, play poker games for free below. You can practice your strategy without registering or downloading anything.

      Jacks or Better
      Play Now
      Cards of Ra Jacks or Better
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      Three Card Brag
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      Aces And Faces
      Play Now

      Best poker online casino games – trending titles

      You’ll find many poker game variants to choose from at the best online casinos NZ. Here are a few of our favourites:

      Texas Hold ‘Em

      Each player is dealt two private cards, while five community cards are laid face-up on the board. Players use the best combination of five cards to form a hand and beat their opponents. We recommend you try this game out at TonyBet casino.


      Pai Gow poker

      Players receive seven cards and split them into two hands: one with five cards and the other with two cards. The goal is to beat both of the dealer's corresponding hands to win. Read more about pai gow poker in our dedicated guide.


      Caribbean Stud

      Here you’ll be betting against the dealer with a hand of five cards. The dealer needs an ace and a king or better to qualify. Wildz casino offers an excellent bet range of NZ$.0.5 to NZ$2,000.


      Omaha

      You’ll be dealt four private cards, while five community cards are laid face-up on the board. Use two of their hole cards and three community cards to form the best five-card hand.


      Five Card Draw

      This classic variant sees players dealt five private cards, and it’s available at Casinoly casino. You can exchange any or all of the cards at once. The aim is to have the best five-card hand at showdown after a round of betting.


      Seven Card Stud

      A classic variant that’s popular but difficult to find at online poker NZ sites. Each player is dealt seven cards, three facedown and four face up. The player with the best five-card hand wins.


      Live Poker Rooms

      This is when you play online poker for real money against a human dealer and other real players. Hugely popular at any of the best online poker websites like Casumo casino.

      Features of top online poker sites in New Zealand

      We only recommend the best poker online sites, offering world-class game variety and features. If you’re looking to play real money online poker, make sure your chosen site offers the below.

      🃏 No. of poker variants
      4 - 6
      ❤️ Popular titles
      Caribbean Stud, Texas Hold’em, Pai Gow
      🎁 Poker casino bonuses
      Poker freerolls, buy-in tournaments, sign-up bonuses
      📱 Online poker apps
      Android & iOS
      ⚙️ Software providers
      2+
      ⭐️ Top NZ poker rooms online
      888

      How we rate the best casinos for real money poker

      Our experts are committed poker players, and they follow a strict list of criteria when determining which is the best online poker site for NZ players.

      The list never changes, and includes all those features that can make or break your experience when you’re playing at new online poker sites. Let’s take a detailed look below.

      Range & quality of online poker games

      In the world of online casino poker, variety rules. Our experts expect a site to offer a good selection of games from renowned providers, covering the most popular variants with bet ranges that accommodate different bankrolls.

      This is why we highly recommend Casumo for the best poker casino games. If you’re after video poker, you’ll find 25+ variants to choose from, while the live poker section comes with VIP tables and low-stakes too. Highly popular is the Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em table, which accepts an unlimited number of players with one player per seat.

      Software providers

      Evolution Gaming is undoubtedly the name to look for when it comes to poker software providers, offering pretty much any variant you can think of, including a progressive jackpot on Caribbean Stud with the prize pool getting bigger with every round until the player who lands a Royal Flush wins it. 

      Once again, we recommend playing this at Casumo. However, if you enjoy a bigger variety of software options at your chosen online poker NZ site, TonyBet also offers variants like 6+ Poker by betgamestv and Ezugi.

      Poker casino bonuses & tournaments

      A good online poker tournament really gets the adrenalin going, so we keep our best scores for those sites that offer regular poker tournaments with various buy-in options and prize pools. 

      Poker freerolls are obviously the most sought-after, as you’ll participate without paying any entry fee. Sites like BetandPlay, which sometimes offer buy-in tournaments as part of the Drops & Wins live promotions, may require a fee or a buy-in, but it’s worth the price as the prize pools tend to run into thousands.

      Some online poker NZ sites offer specialist poker bonuses, although at the moment none of our recommended sites do so. Meantime, we recommend sites like Wildz, where you can use your welcome bonus on live poker tables with a weighting of 50%.

      Poker casino apps

      The best online poker sites will let you play your favourite skill game on the go, and this is one of the criteria that our experts look at very closely before recommending an online poker casino.

      With many Kiwis finding mobile casino apps very convenient, sites like JackpotCity score high. You’ll be able to use their dedicated app on any mobile device, whether Android or iOS, to play poker online real money games like All Aces Poker and Deuces Wild Bonus Poker.

      However, we also recommend online poker NZ sites that use HTML5 technology and are fully mobile responsive even when you play in-browser. Casinoly and Wildz both fall within this category, and they deliver an excellent mobile poker site experience.

      Safety & game fairness

      This is a huge priority for our experts and also applies at poker sites online. We only recommend casinos that operate with a reputable gambling license, such as those issued by the Malta Gaming Authority or by the UK Gambling Commission. 

      If a site has more than one license, that’s brownie points from our experts. This is why Rizk, with both of the previously mentioned licenses, scores very high on security.

      For RNG poker games, we make sure that wins are truly randomly generated following an audited RNG system. We look for auditing seals like eCOGRA, which JackpotCity shows on its homepage.

      Game lobby experience

      The best online poker sites make it easy for you to locate your favourite games. If a site makes you waste your time trying to discover whether it hosts a particular variant, it’s not going to score very highly with our experts.

      We like to see a clearly marked online poker room in the games lobby, with a search function like the excellent one at Rizk, which lets you filter by game title or provider. 

      Overall casino rating

      Even if your focus is playing online casino poker, we look at a site’s overall performance before recommending it. For starters, it needs to have a strong overall review rating.

      Beyond that, we look at anything that may affect your experience when playing online real money poker. This includes whether a site offers swift and uncomplicated cash outs, together with a good choice of payment options. We also look at the level of customer support offered, as well as whether there is sufficient choice for other games. 

      Our top scoring online poker NZ sites, like Rizk and Wildz, cover the whole package, making sure that the player comes first no matter which games they’re in the mood of and no matter the size of their bankroll.

       

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      Online poker tournaments and other casino promotions

      You will find sporadic casino bonus offers at online poker NZ sites, but what really gets online poker players excited is the prospect of a good tournament.

      Tournaments at real money poker sites work very similarly to those at land-based poker rooms, where you pay a buy-in to compete with other players. There are also freeroll tournaments, although these are less common and their prize pools tend to be smaller.

      Below we list the most common types of tournaments you can expect to find at online poker websites.

      Freerolls

      If the thought of coming up against pros still makes you a bit nervous, these are ideal as you’ll be able to take part without paying an entry fee. Simply register to your chosen online poker NZ site and enter your details. You will then be notified a few hours before the daily or weekly freeroll tournaments roll up.

      Multi-buy tournaments

      The best online poker sites offer a selection of these, so that true poker diehards can re-enter the event more than once. Be aware that some casinos do put a limit on the number of times you can register.

      Rebuy tournaments

      Let’s say you’re playing online casino poker and you run into a bad streak. No sweat – these tournaments will let you back in. As with multi-buy, the site may impose limits as the number of times you can do this. Worth noting is that you should only do this if your bankroll can afford it, so don’t simply buy back in while chasing losses.

      Multi-table tournaments

      The thrill of a poker table, multiplied. Tournaments with multiple poker tables are known for offering bigger prizes, but they also attract more pro players and the vibe can get a bit cutthroat. Expect to find various variants, including Texas Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha (PLO), as well as various betting formats. Strictly for the confident.

      Turbo games

      All the usual fun of playing poker games, speeded up. Levels are shorter while blinds and antes increase at a faster rate than usual. Basically, it’s act now or lose your chips.

      Sit and Go

      These tournaments usually have one table in the 6 or 9 max format. There’s a small buy-in fee to gain access to the starting chip pack and the gameplay can feature various poker styles such as classic, turbo and others.

      Popular software for real money poker

      Being a highly specialised skill-based game, only the most on-point software providers will do when playing online real money poker. Below, you’ll find our experts’ choice of top game providers for the best online poker sites.

      Realtime Gaming

      Realtime Gaming

      If it’s video poker you’re after, this provider services casinos with 60+  online real money poker titles including classics like Caribbean Stud, Pai Gow and Texas Hold ‘Em.

      Ezugi

      Ezugi

      Specialising in live dealer tables, Ezugi has built a strong reputation and offers a nice balance between classic variants and newer ones like 32 Cards.

      Free vs Real money poker

      Online casino poker is not the easiest game to play, which is why some players may find themselves wondering whether they can cut it. If you’re still unsure whether to risk on real money online poker, this guide includes a selection of free poker games that you can try without putting down any of your money. 

      Remember that you won’t be able to cash out any winnings in the free version, and you’ll also have access to far fewer variants. Our experts have compiled a list of pros and cons to help you decide which version’s right for you.

      Free online poker

      You can practice your skills without risking any of your money

      You can experiment with different variants until you find the one that works for you

      There is no pressure to win as your bankroll is not on the line

      Should you land a good win, you won’t be able to cash out your money

      You will find less bet options and you’re limited to the most popular variants

      Real money poker

      Any money you win can be cashed out

      You can take part in thrilling tournaments with huge prize pools

      There are unlimited variants to try so boredom is very unlikely

      You stand to lose real money

      Playing with pros can be intimidating if you’re not used to it

      Free online poker Real money poker

      You can practice your skills without risking any of your money

      Any money you win can be cashed out

      You can experiment with different variants until you find the one that works for you

      You can take part in thrilling tournaments with huge prize pools

      There is no pressure to win as your bankroll is not on the line

      There are unlimited variants to try so boredom is very unlikely

      Should you land a good win, you won’t be able to cash out your money

      You stand to lose real money

      You will find less bet options and you’re limited to the most popular variants

      Playing with pros can be intimidating if you’re not used to it


      How to play poker online – the rules

      When playing at the best online poker sites, specific bets and rules vary according to the variant. However, a basic game of classic poker will always play out in the same way. Below, we outline how to play poker online in seven simple steps.

      • Place your starting bets – choose from a small blind that worth half the minimum bet, or the big blind that is worth at least the minimum bet.
      • Players are handed 2 cards each, starting from the left. Keep your hand hidden at this stage.
      • When it’s your turn, decide whether to call, raise, bet or fold.
      • The dealer places 3 community cards face up on the table. This is when you can replace your existing cards.
      • At the end of the round, each remaining player starting from the left reveals the cards face up.
      • The best hand wins. In case of a tie, the pot is split.
      • Another round is called and the process starts all over again.

      Win real money playing online poker – NZ expert tips

      First of all, you need to understand that although real money online poker requires skill, there’s still a strong element of luck to it. That said, let’s take a look at how you can help push your luck in the right direction.

      • Make sure that you’re familiar with the rules of your chosen variant

        Different poker setups come with their own rules and betting options, and if you miss out on something crucial then your opponent is already in the lead.

      • Don’t be afraid to play aggressively

        This isn’t something you’ll catch us saying often, but with poker you need to make the most of a good opening and up the ante, before you lose your opportunity.

      • Keep an eye on your opponents’ moves

        What they’re doing is just as important as the cards in your hand as it’ll show you which way the wind is blowing. And do learn how to read a bluff.

      • Make the most of multi-table tournaments

        These offer the biggest chances of winning as you’ll have a lot of hands concurrently on the go.

      Should you play online poker for real money?

      So you’ve tasted the thrill of playing online poker but remain uncertain whether it’s time to put down a real money wager. Below, you’ll find a list of pros and cons to help you decide whether you need more free practice.

      Pros

      • Game variety: Playing real money poker online gives you access to a vast selection of variants from the popular Texas Hold'em to rarer variants like 2-7 Triple Draw.
      • High RTP: Poker is one of the most popular casino games at top paying casinos in New Zealand due to having a high return to player.
      • Cash out your winnings: When you win on a real money wager, you’ll be able to withdraw your cash. In free poker, your winnings aren’t real. 
      • Multi-tabling: Online poker allows skilled players to play multiple tables simultaneously. This can be a significant advantage for those who are good at the game, as it can potentially increase your hourly wins.
      • Promotions and bonuses: Online poker NZ sites sometimes offer sign-up bonuses, loyalty programs, and other promotions specifically to poker players.
      • Access to tournaments: These are the ultimate in terms of delivering the vibe of a landbased casino, with multiple players and big prize pools adding to the thrill of the game.

      Cons

      • You risk your money: If you lose, it’s your actual bankroll that’s at stake.
      • Skill disparity: When playing against a human dealer or other players, there is a chance that they’ll be more proficient at the game than you. 
      • Lots of rules to master: This applies particularly if you try to play more than one variant, and it’s easy to get confused unless you’re a pro.
      • Rapid decision making: You’ll be expected to make your move fast, especially on multi-player tables.

      Real money poker FAQs

      Can you play online poker for real money?

      Yes, on this guide you will find our recommendations where Kiwi players can play real money poker in a safe environment. Our experts have compiled a list of the best real money online poker sites – these were chosen after rigorous testing to ensure that they satisfy our criteria of the features that a trustworthy online gambling site should offer.

      What online poker site is best?

      We especially recommend 888 to New Zealand players, as this site has been found by our experts to offer the best overall experience, with an excellent choice of poker variants from the best software providers, as well as regular tournaments. However, this guide includes a selection of other poker sites that are also highly-recommended.

      What is the most trusted online poker site?

      While 888 has been found by our experts to offer a superior level of security and safety to poker players, there are many legit sites where NZ players can enjoy a hand of poker. This guide delves into the data-based criteria that went into the selection process to determine the definitive list of online poker sites that are trustworthy and will deliver a smooth and reliable experience.

      Is online poker legal in New Zealand?

      Yes, playing online poker is perfectly legal in New Zealand as long as the site you’re playing at is not registered or physically present within New Zealand. This limitation is laid down by the Gambling Act of 2003, leaving Kiwi players free to enjoy remote poker elsewhere. For more detailed information, check out our section about gambling laws in New Zealand.

      Can you win real money playing poker online?

      Yes, when playing real money online poker you can certainly win real money if you get lucky. We provide helpful tips to help boost your chances. Always check the terms and conditions and the cashout policy of the poker site you’re playing on to make sure that you meet them, and that any bonus wagering requirements are fulfilled. Remember that, though the game is based on skill, there’s also an element of luck so you can never guarantee a real money win.

      Ramona Depares

      Written by Ramona Depares

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      NZ casino expert

      Ramona Depares is an award-winning journalist focused on cultural and entertainment related content. Based in the Mediterranean gaming hub of Malta, she has taken a deep interest in gambling related news since the earliest days and has seen the global landscape evolve. Ramona specialises in the legal and regulatory aspects of gaming across multiple jurisdictions, with specific interest in NZ and US markets. She is also a best-selling author of fiction and non-fiction books.