Why Do Poker Sites Set Deposit Limits in the First Place?
The reasons for small minimum deposit requirements are rather straightforward, though they vary from one poker site to another.
- Fees: Online poker operators must pay fees for each transaction by credit card and ewallet institutions. Deposits of $1 or $5 would most likely barely cover the fees.
- Standards: Most sites set one minimum deposit amount so as to be consistent. While they may pay higher fees for some payment processors than others, it can be confusing to customers if the minimum deposit changes or varies. Setting one amount as the standard is easier for everyone.
- Encouragement to Play: If players were allowed to deposit $5 or less, there is a higher likelihood that many players would forget about the amount in their accounts and let them lie dormant. However, if they have $10 or more in an account, players are more likely to play and get a feel for the website, further becoming more likely to deposit again in the future.
Where Are Minimums Listed?
The best thing about our website is that we provide that information all in one place for your convenience. The table above provides a section which outlines the lowest possible deposit amount and lists the banking method needed. See this image as an example of where to look.
In general, however, it is not difficult to seek out the minimum deposit poker requirements of any given site, if you know where to look. And all of the information can be accessed before setting up a new account or choosing to become a customer.
- Banking page: Most online poker sites offer a link from their home pages to a page with information on banking and deposit/withdrawal information.
- Help or FAQ section: Every online poker site offers a page labeled “help” or FAQ for frequently asked questions. By doing a search on those pages, a person can typically find answers to questions about minimum deposits and withdrawals.
- Terms and conditions: A standard legal requirement poker sites is for the operators to list their terms and conditions. Somewhere in the fine print is the information about small deposit amounts.
- Customer service: Players need search far and wide for information. If it is not listed in obvious places, simply contact the customer service department of the poker site to ask about the requirements.
- Google: By doing a quick search in Google or any web browser for “minimum deposit” plus the name of the poker site, there should be links that pop up immediately with the information.
How to Avoid Minimum Deposits?
For most poker rooms, there is no way to avoid the deposit requirements. For the reasons listed above, sites simply must set those amounts for financial and consistency reasons. However, players are not obligated to make those deposits.
Here are some suggestions for customers who want to experience the fun of online poker without making a financial commitment:
- Play-money poker: Go to the dot-net version of the major poker sites like PokerStars, 888poker, or PartyPoker to play for chips and coins with no financial requirement whatsoever. Other sites do offer free poker as well.
- Freerolls: Create an account on any reputable poker site and look for freeroll tournaments in the main lobby. Most sites offer freerolls regularly throughout the day and night. They require no money to play and typically reward the top finishers with real money. Many players build their bankrolls primarily by becoming skilled at freeroll tournaments.
- Specials: Some poker sites offer specials with free money to play. For example, 888poker occasionally offers anywhere from $8 to $88 in free-play on their real-money sites in order to attract new customers. There are usually wagering requirements for that money, such as winnings might have to be wagered 30x or more before withdrawals are permitted, but it is a good way to get the feel of a site before depositing one’s own money.
Don’t Be Distracted by Minimums
As mentioned, the smallest deposit requirements are very standard in the entire online gambling industry to cover fees and other overhead costs of the operators. Unless a minimum is more than $50, the site is not trying to get over on its customers.
The best thing about small deposit poker sites is that they usually come with a promotional or bonus offer. Most sites will offer some incentive to make an initial deposit to their site, such as a 100% matching offer that gives the player the chance to play with double the amount of that first deposit. Other times, there are promotions that allow players to earn free tournament tickets or other prizes for simply making that first deposit of money into a new account. Sites even offer reload bonuses for players who want to add money to an account that has been depleted through regular play.
Check out the online poker sites above and their minimum deposit offers.