Poker Online in India – How to Play and Its Variations

Playing Poker Online is popular in India. And is why many online gambling sites have allowed people to play poker on their platforms.

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In this guide, we will cover everything you need to know about playing online poker for real money in India. Make sure to read the article until the end, so that you can learn all tricks that will make you make you a pro when playing poker online.

Poker And Its Origins

Poker evolved from a game that was first introduced in the 10th century by people in China. The modern variant gained its form in the 19th century in the USA. R. F. Foster, a card game writer wrote in 1837 that poker was first developed from the Persian game of As-Nas. As-Nas dates back to the 16th century, and by the next century, it seems to have been picked up by the French. 

Poker Online

Main Families Of Poker Online

There are four main families of poker in gaming sites, and they will be covered in this section.


You can play straight poker with 2 to 14 participants, but the ideal number of players is 7 or 8. People always play the game with a standard 52-card deck. In this form of online poker, you have to make the best of your initial set of cards. When playing straight poker, bluffing is very important. Otherwise, you will mostly be relying on luck. 

Stud Poker

In stud poker, cards are dealt face up and face down and players receive the cards in multiple rounds. In these variations of poker, players need to only play poker with the cards they initially receive. They cannot replace the cards when playing the game.

Here are some examples of stud poker variations:

  • Five-card stud - This is the earliest form of stud poker, and it was originally played after the American Civil War. In these poker games, aces play both high and low in straights. The highest hand wins the game. In each round, the maximum raise is three.
  • Seven-card stud - This online poker real money game is also referred to as Down-the-River. This was the most popular form of poker before Texas Hold’em became well known around the world. Two to eight people are allowed to play at a time, but the rules may have to be altered if 8 people participate. 
  • Seven-card stud high low - In these poker games, the highest hand will have to split the pot with the lowest hand. A qualifying low hand has to be at most 8-low. In case the lowest hand does not qualify, the pot will be taken in full by the highest hand. 

Draw Poker

Draw poker is any game where participants play with a complete hand before the first betting round. Hands for future rounds are developed by drawing or replacing the cards. People mostly play draw poker in friendly game sessions. Here are some variations of draw poker:

  • Five Card Draw and Seven Card Draw Poker

These two poker games follow the same rules, except for the number of cards dealt. And are the simplest poker variant. Participants will first play with five or seven face-down cards. They will then replace up to four cards, and then the betting round is held. 

  • Gardena or Jacks to Open

In this form of poker, every participant has to pay an ante before they start playing. Each player will be dealt five or seven cards and he will only be able to open the betting if he has a pair of jacks or a stronger hand. 

  • Double Draw Poker

This game differs from other draw poker variants in that it offers participants two chances to draw and replace their cards. A player will be able to get a total of 9 cards. As you play poker online India, you should aim at getting a pair of jacks or better. 

Community Card Poker

This is a type of online poker that uses shared cards or window cards. When you start playing, you will receive an incomplete hand, after which you can take community cards to create a complete hand. Through the playing session, all the community cards will be facing up. The number of shared cards will vary based on the variation of the game you have chosen to play. Also, you should note that the rules for the formation of hands will change from one variation to another. Here are the most popular community card poker games:

  • Texas Hold ’em

This is currently the most popular poker online variation in India and also the world. Players first receive two cards, after which they can execute the betting round. A total of five community cards will be on view by the end of the session. 

  • Omaha Hold ‘em

In this variation of poker online, players first receive four cards. By the end, they must form a winning combination with three of the five community cards and two of their own initial cards. You can play this version with a pot-limit, a fixed limit, or no limit. 

  • Bundles

Bundles are one of the lesser-known variations of community card poker. You can play the game in very few casinos. The players get five hole cards at the start of the game, then the dealer will give two rows of seven cards, all of which are face-down. 

Online Poker

Poker Cash Games v Tournament Poker Games 

Now that you have understood the key families of online poker, you need to learn about the gaming formats for the poker games. In online sites, the key game formats are cash money games and tournaments. All online poker players come to a point in the game where they struggle to decide between these two formats. First, you should note that you can make money with any of these formats, just as long as you put in enough work. But the two are very different and require different sets of skills. 

In cash money games, you can settle down to play poker games and leave whenever you like. In tournaments, you need to sit down during the registration, and since you have already bought into the tournament with real money, you have to play until you are out of chips. 

Another key difference you will notice when playing the two types of games is in the blind levels. In cash money gaming sessions, the blind levels are static, and in tournaments, they increase at set intervals. You will also not be able to rebuy chips in the tournaments, except in cases of rebuying tournaments.

When choosing a poker online format to play, you should consider the following factors:

Time commitment 

If you are short on time, you should definitely play online cash money games. With this format, you can sit down and play poker for as long or short as you like. When playing online tournaments, you can bust out within the first few hours, but the online cash games may run for as long as 8 hours. Online tournaments are better for professional online players or people who can spare entire days for the game. 


Variance in poker online games is another major thing to consider when choosing the poker format you will play. Online tournaments have higher variance compared to cash money games, and that is why professional online players like to play poker cash games. But it is worth noting that a single win at the final table in a tournament can earn you a lot of money. 


If excitement is a key factor for you, consider playing online tournaments instead of cash money games. Online tournaments also have more prestige, and progressing through the tables can be considered a major achievement. Also, the amount of money to be won from online tournaments can also give you a sense of prestige.

Skill level

Poker online tournaments usually attract recreational players, particularly because they have become a TV sensation. The design of poker online tournaments does not require advanced skills in the game. You can easily make it through the tables even with basic skills. To win a lot of money in cash games, you will usually need to play the game for years till you perfect your skill. 

Poker online games

Poker Oline Games - Betting Variants

Playing online poker gives you many options for betting variants. Here are the different types of poker you can play online:

No Limit

No Limit poker online usually has the abbreviation NL. In this betting variant, the bet sizes and raises in the betting rounds are unlimited. For the initial bet, an online player can choose to check or play with an amount that is equal to or higher than the minimum bet of the table. The highest amount you can bet in the round is dependent on the number of chips currently in play on the table. 

After placing a bet in the betting round, the other players can call, fold, or raise. In case a player chooses to raise, the amount they raise has to be equal to or higher than the amount of the last bet made. The highest raise you can make in NL online poker is the amount that would force other players to bet all their chips. 

You should remember that in each new betting round, the first person to place a bet will be able to play the minimum amount again. The rules above will then apply once again. 

Fixed Limit

Fixed limit poker online is simply referred to as ‘limit online poker.’ In fixed limit poker online, the amount of money spent on all bets and raises will be set. Usually, presenting the limits are as the small bet and the large bet, and the small one will always be first. As an example, an online game with a fixed small bet of 20 and a fixed large bet of 40. Thus a 20/40 game. In many cases, the big bet will be twice the small bet.

The small bet covers the first two betting rounds while the big bet applies to the final two or three rounds. Since the amount the player can choose to bet or raise is already set, there is little decision making involved when you play these online games. 

Pot Limit

Pot limit poker online or PL is a betting structure where players can only play with an amount that is between the minimum bet and the total value of the available pot. This way, the players in gaming sites have a limit to the amount they can play.

The online games are usually described with the sizes of the blinds. For example, a 2/4 game has a small blind size of 2 and a large blind size of 4. However. in some rare cases, games can be described with the sizes of the buy-ins. In this case, a game of 200-600 will have a minimum buy-in of 200 and a maximum of 600. But typically, pot limit games do not have maximum buy-ins since the participants cannot play more than the value of the pot. 

You should remember that the size of the big blind is the minimum bet you can make in one round. In case these values do not match, a minimum bet will be set explicitly.

Pot limit Guide

The challenge in these online games is to figure out the maximum amount you can play. This is equal to the total size of the pot. Even experienced players can have trouble calculating the maximum bets, but it is not complicated. You only need to add up the two figures below:

  1. First, you have to figure out the total amount of bet. This is the amount of money it would take to call all previous bets in the current betting round. If you are the first participant to play poker in the round, this value will be zero. 
  2. The second value you need to figure out is the total amount of chips in the pot and in the previous bets of the round. For this figure, you just need to add up the amount in the pot from previous betting rounds, the value of all current bets, and the raises in the round. 

You have to calculate the maximum bet as you continue to play poker. 

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Poker Online Demo & Free Games - Practice For Free

To grasp the rules of online poker, you may need to play demo poker games or free online games. The best way to practice these games is by logging on to poker online rooms. You just need to find a gaming site that offers poker online as a table game, and in many cases, the gaming online site will allow you to play poker for free. 

It is important to note that online poker is a game of skill and relies less on luck. Granted, you may win a few online games even without understanding the rules and strategies of the game, but with enough skill, you will be able to ensure a regular and long-term winning. 

Before you try out the online games, read up on the rules of the specific poker online variation you intend to play, and make sure you apply some strategies to your online game. This way, you will be able to perfect your strategy and learn how to apply it as you play. 

You should also note that playing poker in gaming sites online is not exactly the same as playing in traditional land-based poker. Still, it provides a good foundation for people who want to play the game. 

Bluff - The Key Difference Between Real and Online Poker

One key difference in the gameplay is in the bluff. In land-based poker, you will have to learn how to read subtle body language signals as you play. This way, you can tell how good a person’s hand is and will be able to plan your next move. When you play poker on the internet, you will mostly have to read the person’s playing style to determine how good their hand is. Also, you will be able to determine whether your opponent has the skill for the game. You will also find that online casinos have more poker games than land-based gaming rooms.

Best Online Poker Sites in India

Online poker in India is in a legal grey area. The gaming laws for online casinos are still subject to interpretation at this point, but many poker online companies still allow people in India to play poker. Here are some of the best online poker gaming sites in India:

Adda 52

This gaming site was developed by professional poker players, and it is currently the biggest online poker site in India. The gaming website is owned by Gaussian Networks Pvt. This company has a great reputation in India, so you should not worry about losing your money on the site. The gaming site also enjoys decent traffic. 

Another great thing about Adda 52 is that it offers a great welcome bonus of 2,500 INR. This bonus comes in cash game tokens and tournament tickets. If you are a skilled player, Adda 52 can even help you enter some of the biggest live tournaments in the world, including the World Poker Tour (WPT). 

You can play poker games from Adda 52 on their mobile app, which is available on Android and iOS devices. At all times of day and night, you can access the money games and tournaments. If you have a problem on the gaming site, you will be able to contact the 24/7 customer support team. 


You can also play poker at PokerStars, an online poker room owned and operated by Amaya Gaming. This gaming site has been around since 2001 and has become one of the market leaders in online poker. At PokerStars, you can play freeroll and cash tournaments. But the thing which makes the gambling site famous is their poker festivals. They host events like the Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP), Turbo Championship of Online Poker (TCOOP), and the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). The WCOOP is among the largest poker festivals in the world. 

PokerStars offers a 100% welcome bonus on the first three deposits, and that can give you a maximum bonus of $600 to play poker. Also, you will receive a $10 bonus whenever you earn 200 VPPs. Additionally, this poker room has a mobile app which is available for both iOS and Android users. 

Online Poker Bonuses & Promotions 

With online poker games, you will be able to increase your potential winnings by claiming the bonuses and promotions. Usually, the gambling sites will offer you a bonus for signing up with them and depositing money to your account. Most gambling sites offer the welcome bonus as a percentage of the first deposit you make on the gaming site. You will also be able to access some freerolls, usually on the weekends. 

Online gaming sites come up with new types of bonus offers and promotions every day, so you should be open to them. However, don’t just sign up with an online poker site just because of their generous offers. Make sure the terms and conditions are reasonable, and also ensure that they have reputable licenses. 

Conclusion - Why Play Online Poker?

Online poker is similar to traditional poker in many ways, but it comes with many advantages. Since the games will be running on screens, you will not feel intimidated by professional-looking players, and you don’t even have to maintain a poker face. Online gambling also gives you the chance to play some of the poker variants for free. Another advantage of these gambling sites is that online poker sites have a wider variety of online poker games compared to land-based poker rooms. 

Poker is classified as a game of skill, so it is legal in India. However, playing poker online real money games on the internet is still a legal grey area. Regardless of this fact, many companies offer their services to poker players in India. 

Poker Online - Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most commonly asked questions on online poker gaming in India:

♣️ Poker Freerolls - What Are They?

A freeroll is a poker online tournament that does not have an entry fee, but participants can still win real money. These games are usually organized as promotions for poker gaming sites. 

♠️ What are Sit’n Go events?

These are poker games with 6 to 10 participants, and they typically run for 20 to 60 minutes. You pay a fixed buy-in and get the same amount of chips. Once you lose all your chips, you will be disqualified from the game. 

📱 Can I Play Poker From a Mobile?

Yes, you can play poker games on your mobile phone. Some online gaming sites have mobile apps for Android and iPhone devices, and for others, you can play on their mobile gaming sites. 

🃏 What Is The Easiest Poker To Play?

Five-card draw poker is the easiest poker game you can play. It is quite basic in its gameplay and most people prefer to play it in friendly sessions. 

💰 Can I Play with the INR?

Many online gambling sites in India allow people to play poker with the INR. Other commonly accepted currencies are the Euro and the US dollar.