10 Beginner's Mistakes to Avoid in Poker
Online poker is a fun, challenging game of strategy enjoyed by Brits for many years. It's growing in popularity with new players joining in games each week. If you're ready to join the fun and try your hand at online poker, the most important thing you need to know is that each mistake you make costs you money. Make sure you avoid costly mistakes many beginners make by following the tips in this article. Read on to find and avoid common mistakes so you can enjoy playing and win big!
Mistake #1: Not knowing how to play
Before you sit down at your computer to play online poker, make sure you know the rules of the game. Learning while you play is something many new players come to regret because it costs them a great deal of money. Play smart and save money by taking time to memorize poker terms, learn the value of each hand, understand various strategies for betting, and read the tips in this article.
To get you started, here's a quick primer on common poker terms:
Ante: the minimum amount of money to gamble
Blinds: money put down prior to the cards being dealt in a hand to ensure money is being wagered
Call: matching the raised amount of a bet
Check: term indicating you don't wish to raise the new wager
Raise: term indicating increasing the bet
Mistake #2: Choosing the wrong casino
With the popularity of online poker in the UK, there's a lot of casino websites to choose from, but how do you know which one is right for you? The best online UK poker sites are safe and secure, have high ratings and excellent customer service, accept deposits in UK currency, offer a great table selection and have terrific perks. Make sure the casino you choose has a good reputation and rating and is backed by the UK Gambling Association.
Mistake #3: Not setting a bank roll limit
It's always a good rule of thumb to only gamble with money you can afford to lose, and one of the best ways to do that is to set a limit to your bank roll and stick to that limit. Doing this will help you avoid ending up in a tough spot. Whether you're on a winning or losing streak, though, it's tempting to bet big or spend more to win more. But sticking to your pre-determined limit will help you feel better about your experience--and your wallet will thank you.
Read more in our guide to bankroll management.
Mistake #4: Not taking advantage of bonuses and perks
Just like land-based casinos offer free drinks and hotel room stays as incentives to play, online casinos offer incentives to play too. All of these perks can lead to more play time and more winnings, so leaving them untouched is like leaving money at the table. Use welcome and loyalty bonuses, many of which include matching a percentage of your initial bankroll deposit, free plays and more, to get the most from your online poker experience.
Mistake #5: Playing while impaired
Keeping a clear head when playing is the best way to be strategic and not lose money. Playing online poker when you're tired or not sober is a great strategy for losing money. Staying clear headed helps you make smart choices and prevents you from taking unnecessary risks and overspending.
Mistake #6: Over betting
Betting a large amount of money in relation to the size of the pot is over betting or "buying the pot". It's a dramatic move that many beginners use overconfidently in an effort to push their opponents to fold, but it can be a costly move if your bet is called. Avoid over betting as a beginner, and, after you have some experience under your belt, use it sparingly and strategically only in deep-seated games where you can afford to lose.
Mistake #7: Playing every hand
It may seem like a good strategy to play every hand--the more you play, the more you learn, right? That's not the case, though. The odds don't increase because you play more. Know good starting hands and play those rather than playing everything you're dealt. While it can be easy to get impatient if you don't have a lot of good starting hands, playing smart will keep your money safe and your game enjoyment high.
Mistake #8: Ignoring opponents' betting moves
Don't get so busy playing your hand that you don't pay attention to what your opponents are doing. Stay alert and watch the other players' moves to make the best bet choices yourself. Just because a player is quiet or seems passive doesn't mean they can't raise competitively. And just because an aggressive player is raising doesn't mean he has the cards to win. Take into account your opponents' actions and how they could impact you when considering your next move.
Mistake #9: Chasing your losses
Continuing to play till you win back the money you've lost is a move referred to as "chasing your losses". But doing that is a trap that almost always ends with you spending--and losing--more money. Stick to your spending limit (see Mistake #3) and you'll enjoy online casino play much more.
Mistake #10: Not having fun
More than anything, online poker should be enjoyable! While it's important to be informed and play smartly, getting too stressed about playing negates the point of it. If you're not having fun, you're doing something wrong.