Mac Online Poker Tips and Advice


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Okay, so you're ready to play some online poker on your Mac, but you don’t know where to start? Keep reading, because we've put together a small list of things a newcomer should be aware of in order to maximize their fun. Once you've practiced with some Play Money games at an online poker room like PokerRoom, it's time to play for some cash! You will end up learning as you go, but here are a few areas that many newbies are the most curious about:

  • Picking the right online poker tables to sit at with your Mac

  • What stakes you should play

  • How should you deposit and withdraw into your online poker account(s)


Picking the right tables


The problem that many new players run into is the desire to play poker like they've seen on TV. No Limit poker is a dangerous animal, and everyone makes mistakes. The better players make fewer mistakes, but nobody can play "perfect" poker. If you make a mistake during a No Limit game, you can lose your entire stack on one hand. No Limit Hold'Em is a game best suited to tournament poker and sit-n-go (single table) tournaments.


If you really want to play No Limit Hold'Em, you should head to the sit-n-go poker tournaments. At these tables you can play the "all-in" game everyone loves, and risk a lot less than you might at the cash tables. You can buy in to these sit-go's for as little as $5. Everyone at the table is given the same amount of chips to start the game. At any point you can go all-in and risk all of your chips, which adds up to a whopping $5! At the cash tables you usually start with $25 or more, so if you go all-in you will end up risking a lot more cash. I would recommend No Limit Hold'Em cash games only to seasoned veterans of the game - most new players should probably start out playing Fixed Limit.


Fixed Limit is a great way to start playing poker, but so many newcomers find it less appealing than No Limit. Instead of being able to go "all-in", players bets are limited in size on every play. My experience is that there are so many "loose" players on the internet who play with poor starting hands, call bets when they shouldn't, and try to hit a miracle card on the river (last card to be dealt). If you play with strong hands only, and pay attention to your competition at the table, there's no reason you can't make good money playing Fixed Limit poker.


I have been playing online poker on my Mac for around 1 full year now, and I still only play Fixed Limit when I play cash games. Am I a chicken? Am I afraid of No Limit? No, actually I am a winning player! I withdraw money almost every month from my PokerRoom and Party Poker accounts, mostly from Fixed Limit cash tables. I still enjoy playing No Limit tournaments once in a while when I have the time, but usually when I need a good fix of No Limit Hold'Em I'll just sit down at a sit-n-go table.


Overall advice: Play Fixed Limit cash games, and save the No Limit for tournaments and sit-n-go's.



Play within your limits


Learn to manage your money for long-term success!


This has to be the biggest mistake that new online players make. Too often players move up to a higher stakes game when they're on a winning streak, and then end up losing a good portion of their bankroll because of one or two bad beats. Just because you're winning at the tables you're playing on doesn't always mean you're ready to move up! Hot and cold streaks are part of the game of poker, even for the pros, and if you start catching "cold cards" at the higher limits you will go broke quickly! Be prepared for some losing streaks, because they can grab any player suddenly. That being said, if you are consistently winning at the stakes you regularly play then maybe it's time to move up and try the competition at the higher stakes. Don’t be ashamed or egotistical if you have to move back down, instead you should recognize that maybe your skills still need some honing before you move up again next time.


A good rule of thumb is to have a bankroll that is 200 times the size of the big blind. If you play at the $1-$2 tables, you should have $400 at your disposal for poker. That's not to say that you should need it all, because you probably won't, but it's a horrible feeling to go broke and not be able to play the game you love.


Overall Advice: Don't let your ego decide what stakes you should play. If you think you're ready to move up a level, try it, but don't be afraid to move back down if you find the competition to be too strong. In general - the higher the stakes, the stronger the players.


Tips for depositing money for online poker


There are many ways to deposit real money to play online poker, but the best option in my opinion is NeTeller. Once you set up a NeTeller account you can deposit and withdraw funds directly from your regular bank account. It takes a few days to set up an account, so be prepared and plan ahead. I trust NeTeller with thousands of dollars every month, and I have been nothing but impressed with their service and security. One time I logged in to my account from my friends house, and NeTeller immediately closed my account! Upon getting home I checked my answering machine and had a message to give them a call. The safeguards they have in place had noticed that someone (ME!) logged into my account from a different computer IP address, and that had caused their systems to lock down my money until I called them back to confirm it was indeed me! I was pretty impressed that they had such immediate actions prepared, and have since trusted them with tens of thousands of dollars trouble-free.


You can also deposit at online poker rooms with your Visa/MasterCard, but beware that occasionally credit card companies block these types of transactions. My fiancée's credit card company phoned her when she first deposited, and simply asked her to confirm that she was the one using the card for an online transaction. On the other hand a good friend of mine had to set up a NeTeller account because his credit card company wouldn't process any online gambling transactions.


If you think you might be making a lot of large transactions, or if you know that you're going to play at only one poker room and you won't need the added convenience of NeTeller, then you can actually link your checking account directly to the poker room's account. This means that you can deposit and withdraw directly from your checking account! Very convenient and secure, this is how many professional online poker players set up their online poker accounts. It basically works by using a common "bank wire" to transfer funds between their account and yours.


Another option for people living in the US is a prepaid debit card. Much like a prepaid phone card you can buy these and then use them online with none of your personal information ever being transmitted online, just the bank card number.


Overall, my advice is to get your self a NeTeller account. NeTeller is accepted at every online poker room that I know of, and provides quick secure depositing and withdrawal transactions. If you are uncomfortable with it being linked to your main checking account, you can always set up a secondary account with your bank just for your NeTeller account. This is an unnecessary precaution, but should help to ease the minds of even the most fearful users. This way you can easily keep track of all your poker transactions, as well as your balance in terms of winning and losing. As I mentioned earlier, I have trusted NeTeller with tens of thousands of dollars and have never had any problems at all. I trust them enough that I even helped my own mother set up an account with NeTeller so that she can play online poker too!


Overall advice: You should probably get a NeTeller account if you want to play online poker on your Mac.


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