Play Video Poker Online For Real Money

Posted by Chris Spencer . Last updated:

A combination of poker and slots, video poker is fast, exciting, and easy to learn. Typically, games combine the strategy and approach of five card draw poker and the graphics and pace of online slots.

Where to Play Video Poker Online

Our experts have scoured the internet to find the best video poker sites accepting US players:

How to Play Video Poker

While there are several popular variations, the goal in the wide majority of video poker remains the same: build the best possible poker hand and receive a corresponding payout.

Most variations can be broken down into three main stages: place a bet, build your hand, and payout.

Place a Bet

Place a Bet

At the beginning of each hand, players must place a bet. Players will be able to choose an amount, whether that’s one credit or a max bet. Remember, potential payouts will increase with your wager size, but so too will the potential for loss.

Like in online blackjack or slots, online video poker operate on a ‘credit’ system rather than cash – if so, just think of these as chips. Players can choose how much bankroll to exchange for game credits, and then use these game credits to wager. At the end of the game, players will be able to easily convert their credit winnings back to cash in their account.

Once you’ve placed a bet, cards will be dealt.

Build your Hand

Build your Hand

Now that the player has been dealt his or her cards, it’s a matter of building the strongest hand possible. Like we mentioned, most games are modeled after five-card draw, so we’ll focus on that.

Once a player has been dealt their five cards, they need to choose whether to HOLD or DRAW their cards. Much like in five-card draw poker, this decision would be based on strength of hand – choosing to DRAW is choosing to exchange cards for an equivalent amount from the deck, whereas choosing to HOLD is choosing to keep the cards you’ve been dealt.

Generally, there will be HOLD buttons beneath each individual card in your hand – if there is a card or cards that you wish to keep, be sure to click HOLD on those options before you click DRAW.

This process continues, depending on your exact game rules, until the player has run out of turns or chooses to HOLD all cards.



After the player is done with their hand, the game automatically pays out per the paytable.

If a player has a great hand, they’ll likely receive a strong payout. Low pairs, or high card, and the player may receive no payout. We’ll cover the best hands shortly, but be sure to consult your specific game’s paytable for details.

Some game types also include multipliers & wild cards, similar to online slots, where players receive additional payouts for receiving a certain card or combination of cards.

Video Poker Strategy

a stack of poker chips radiating a signal

Bet Big

Typically, video poker payouts increase aggressively depending on a player’s size. Place max bets if your bankroll allows for it.

a green laptop with a playing card displayed

Learn the Paytable

In traditional poker, you’re playing against other players. In video poker, you’re playing against the paytable. Ensure you understand the payouts so you can make wise wagering decisions.

Zwei grüne Geldscheine

Manage Your Bankroll

As always, we strongly recommend having a bankroll strategy and sticking to it. Know how much you can afford to lose, never play with more than that, and never bet emotionally.

Video Poker Hand Payouts

We’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: every game of video poker is different, and the rules and details will vary from game to game and from casino to casino. A sample paytable is below, but always be sure to consult your game’s paytable for specific details.

Sample Paytable

Hand Example 1 Credit 2 Credits 3 Credits 4 Credits 5 Credits
Royal flush royal flush 250:1 500:1 750:1 1000:1 4000:1
Four of a Kind four of a kind 50:1 100:1 150:1 200:1 250:1
Full house full house 9:1 18:1 27:1 36:1 45:1
Straight straight 4:1 8:1 12:1 16:1 20:1
Three of a Kind cards-three-of-kind 3:1 6:1 9:1 12:1 15:1
Two Pair cards-two-pair 2:1 4:1 6:1 8:1 10:1
One Pair – min. Jacks jacks 1:1 2:1 3:1 4:1 5:1
High card, low pair five playing cards, all different LOSE LOSE LOSE LOSE LOSE

As you’ll see, payouts can increase fairly dramatically based on wager size, making max wagers an attractive betting strategy for those with a flexible bankroll.

Top Video Poker Tips

two cards being split in a game of blackjack

Keep the Pairs

All pairs are worth keeping, even the low ones! If you are dealt a pair, keep them. There is a high chance that if you let them go, you’ll be dealt something worse on the next hand.

a hand choosing to hit in a game of blackjack

Take Your Time

Look for pairs first, and then move to the more advanced potential hands. You are playing against a computer, so there is no rush. Take your time analyzing each hand you are dealt – you will make more mistakes if you try to play quickly.


Remove Unpaired Cards

Don’t hold on to unpaired cards in the hopes of finding a pair on the next deal. Let them go. The chances of being dealt the exact cards that you were looking to pair are low, making it not worth the risk.

Video Poker Variations

While there are tons of variations online, here are the most popular variants for US players.

Free vs. Real Money Video Poker

Many casino operators will allow you to play their games for free in demo/practice mode. We recommend doing this at first, as it gives you the chance to test your strategy, learn the games and see how you like the software. That said, there is nothing like the thrill of playing to win real money! Here are some of the pros and cons:

Pros of Real Money

  • Potential to win real money
  • More game variations available
  • Ability to use casino bonuses to boost bankroll
  • More excitement
  • Access to tournaments and other video poker competitions

Cons of Real Money

  • Longer set-up time due to need to register and deposit
  • You have to put your own money at risk

Video Poker vs. Traditional Poker

Video poker is a computerized game created to allow the speed and convenience of online slots with the gameplay of (typically) a five-card poker game.

Generally, this game is preferred by those who want a quick & easy experience, while traditional poker is better suited to players who prefer the social and strategic elements of betting against other players.

The major difference between video and traditional poker is that in traditional poker, players wager against one another, while in video poker, players are trying to build the best hand possible to collect a predetermined payout from a paytable.

Video Poker Glossary

Video Poker FAQs

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