Poker online vs. offline

In this day and age, you can play poker 24 hours a day on your computer or cell phone. And there is also a proliferation of legalized casinos in many of America’s big cities- and growing.

So, how do you choose between playing online in the comfort of your own home, or getting in the car and living the experience in person?

One benefit to playing online is you won’t be rushed: you can take as long as you want. Have a question on a hand? Call someone, refer to a blackjack statistical card, shoot, you can run a simulation on a split screen.

Unlike in a live casino, you won’t be bothered by a dealer or the other players.

And that’s part of another lure of playing online: privacy.

Not that blackjack is played against other people (it’s not, it’s against the dealer), but some people feel jittery with bystanders or competitors looking over their shoulder.

I’ve seen many a time where a player bows to “peer pressure” and hits or stands based upon what the crowd wants. That won’t happen online.

Playing online also gives you a wider array of limits to choose from. You don’t like a certain site’s limits? Go to another one. Only want to play for a dollar a hand? You can find one online, but very little chance in Las Vegas or anywhere else in person.

Bonuses are also much more prevalent at online casinos. Once a real-life casino gets you in the door, well, you are there. They have no real reason to give you further motivation to play. Online casinos will give bonuses to distinguish themselves from all the other sites. Hey, if you can play with the house’s money, you are already ahead!

Lastly, is the fact of just getting to a casino.

Online, you have no worries about driving (especially if you are drinking). No worries about a loud player to your left, or a heavy smoker to your right. No lines at the bathroom, no overpriced drinks.

Yes, the real-life casino gives you ambiance, the interaction. And sometimes free drinks to keep you playing. Plus, real-life casinos often have higher limits than online, and it’s nice to be able to physically “count” your money.

So here’s what I recommend: If you want a night out on the town, then go out to your neighborhood casino.