If you’re new to playing poker for money, chances are you’re not a winning player yet. Online poker sites use bonuses to encourage new players to sign up. The best bonus offers match the amount you deposit. So if you see 100% up to $500 that means you deposit $500, the poker site gives you $500 free.
Clearing Poker Bonuses
You clear the poker bonuses by simply playing real money poker. Each hand you are dealt in, counts towards clearing the bonus. This is a great way for new players to build a poker bankroll. To clear poker bonuses quickly, I suggest playing $25 No Limit Hold’em or higher or $1/$2 Limit Hold’em or higher. You can clear them faster at 6-max tables, although I suggest full ring games for new players because there’s less variance. Also, if you can get used to it, playing multiple tables will increase the rate you clear a poker bonus exponentially.
When clearing a poker bonus your strategy should be to play ultra tight. Play premium poker starting hands. A good breakeven strategy is to play only pocket pairs, AK, and AQ. With your pocket pairs, don’t continue after the flop with a set (three of a kind) or an over pair to the board. With AK and AQ, don’t continue after the flop without top pair or better, or without a flush draw.
Building your Poker Bankroll
To start, I would have $600 in order to maximize each bonus offer. I know that sounds like a lot, but if you want to make some real money at poker, it’s going to take an investment. Later, you can always cash out your initial deposit. If you don’t have that much money to invest, you can still make money with bonuses, just not as much. For this example, I’m going to assume you use the breakeven poker strategy.
Now that you have a starting investment, download Pokerstars first. The poker bonus at Pokerstars is 100% up to $600. To get the bonus enter marketing code PSP5021 and use the 2009 Pokerstars bonus code STARS600 when making a deposit.
You need 17 VPPs (VIP Player Points) to clear each $1 in bonus money. Depending on the stakes and how many tables you play, you should have no problem clearing this bonus in a few days if you’re consistent. If you choose to take the slower route of low stakes and one table, the bonus will take considerably longer. Hopefully, (if you maxed out the bonus) you’ll soon have a bankroll well over the $1000 mark.
Next, you need to cash out your winnings and move on to the next bonuses. If you managed to get at least $1200 that’s great because you can work on two bonuses back to back instead of having to wait for another withdrawal.
Bankroll Update: $1200 ($600 starting bankroll + $600 bonus)
Now, download Full Tilt Poker and sign up for a real money account. Use the referral code MYFREE600 to get 100% up to $600 on your deposit. That’s right; you get another $600 in free bonus money. If you still have $500 left from your cash out, just leave it alone for now. You need to put all your focus on clearing the Full Tilt bonus, because it takes a bit longer. By now, you should feel comfortable multi-tabling and playing tight. Just keep using the same strategy to clear the bonus at Full Tilt Poker.
After you finish the bonus at Full Tilt, you should once again have over $1000 to cash out. Go ahead and request a withdrawal from FTP.
Bankroll Update: $1800 ($1200 starting bankroll + $600 bonus)
After that, head over to Bodog Poker with that $500 you have left and get the 110% up to $500 bonus. With the Bodog bonus, you get 10% ($50 in this case) instantly on top of your deposit. Then you clear the other $500 as usual. This is a good bonus that shouldn’t take you long to clear. After you’ve completed the Bodog poker bonus, request a cash out. By this time, you should have received your withdrawal from Full Tilt and can now move on to another bonus.
Bankroll Update: $2350 ($1800 starting bankroll + $550 bonus)
Next, download Sportsbook poker and claim their 100% up to $650 bonus. After you’ve clear the Sportsbook poker bonus, download Ultimate Bet to get 110% up to $1100 free.
If you’ve followed this simple poker bankroll building strategy, you should now have a poker bankroll of over $3000 and be well on your way to making lots of money playing online poker.