This is where most players congregate at the top poker sites. Low stakes poker gives every player a chance to experience the rush of winning a pot, regardless of the size of their bankroll. You can play at the $0.01/$0.02 holdem tables for hours without putting much of your money at risk. For those just beginning to get their feet wet with online poker, or want to take a breather from the higher stakes tables, small stakes poker offers an ideal solution.
On this page, we’ll list some of the reasons players gravitate to the lower stakes tables. We’ll also give you a few tips to get started, and point you to other pages for more details on winning low stakes poker games.
Advantages Of Playing Low Stakes Poker
If you’re an experienced poker player, you’ll likely do well at the small stakes tables. New players are drawn to them because they can enjoy the game without risking their mortgage. They have less skill, which means you’ll win more often.
Another benefit is that you can spend a substantial amount of time at the tables without worrying about the amount of cash you’re putting at stake. At $0.05/$0.10, you’ll barely notice the dent in your bankroll.
Also, if you have ever tried to find a high stakes poker table, you already know that doing so is difficult. There are very few players willing to risk $200/$400 on an NL holdem hand. Even the lower stakes poker games (on the high end) with blinds at $25/$50 are sparsely populated. By contrast, you’ll have no trouble finding players for low stakes poker. Whether it’s 2:00 in the morning or 2:00 in the afternoon, you’ll find plenty of low-skilled opponents at the tables.
For other compelling reasons to play low stakes poker online, click here.
Playing Low Stakes Poker To Win
It’s easy to neglect your chip stack when the stakes are low. But playing small stakes poker should not be an excuse for poor bankroll management. At a typical limit holdem table, make sure you start with at least 300 big bets. For example, a $0.05/$0.10 table will require $30. 400 big bets will require $40, and provide a bigger cushion for prolonged downswings.
Develop a blinds strategy, and stick to it. The blinds may seem negligible, but they’ll add up over time. If you play low stakes poker online, plan to play approximately 70 hands an hour. (You’ll play a multiple of that in the event you’re multi-tabling.) This means you’ll post blinds approximately 7 times each hour. Figure this into your betting strategy. Click here for more on developing your betting strategy.
If you’re unfamiliar with pot odds, learn to calculate them. The only players who neglect pot odds are those who don’t know any better. If you can quickly identify probabilities given your cards and the flop, you’ll have a much better chance of taking pots. Here again, don’t find false comfort in the fact that you’re playing low stakes online poker games. There is still money at risk.
One last note before we move on: learn to identify the types of players at your table. Keep in mind that most of them will be inexperienced and low-skilled. Some will make decisions that seem nonsensical. If you can figure out who is aggressive and who is passive, you can better exploit their weaknesses.
Top-Rated Poker Sites To Play Low Stakes Poker
As we mentioned earlier, most players tend to flock to the low stakes poker games. The risk is lower, so there’s less anxiety about going post-flop and losing a heavy hand. Because there’s so much traffic, every poker site offers plenty of small stakes tables, most of which have several players. We suggest picking two or three online poker rooms you enjoy, and sticking to them. Here are our top recommendations.