Bet365 Poker Review

Rating: 10
Bet365 Poker Review
  
An all round perfect choice

Bet365 are among the most popular skins on the iPoker network. Known for their safety and trustworthiness, they are one of the top choices of both recreational and professional players. Bet365 accepts all major deposit options, has software in 14 different languages and offers a large number of currencies.

If you are looking for somewhere to play poker, you will be hard pressed to find a better site than Bet365.

  • The safest and most reliable poker site on iPoker.
  • Home to huge numbers of casual players.
  • Part of the biggest betting site in the world outside the US.
  • Extremely fast cashout times.

 

Bet365

The Bet365 Group was founded in 2000 by Denise Coates and her father Peter Coates. As well as being the chairman of the company, Mr Coates is also the chairman of Premier League football club Stoke City.

Bet365 has developed into one of the world’s largest gambling companies. It boasts over 7 million customers in 200 countries with over £12 billion worth of bets wagered up to March 2012. It employs over 2,100 people worldwide and is one of the largest private companies in the UK. The gaming side of Bet365 is licensed and regulated in Gibraltar.

The Bet365 Sportsbook website is one of the leading sites in its field. It offers a comprehensive in-play betting service and streams over 20,000 live sporting events on the site. Bet365 cemented a place in history as being the first company to ever secure the rights to show an England football match exclusively live on the internet. The match, versus Ukraine in 2009, was a World Cup qualifier and was available online for free to customers with a funded account.

eGaming Review magazine ranked Bet365 as the number one internet gaming company in 2010, 2011 and 2012. The company and its founders have also won numerous other accolades.

Bet365 signed a three-year sponsorship deal with Stoke City FC in 2012 and it has also sponsored the Bet365 Gold Cup horse race since 2008. In 2013 it agreed a long-term deal to become the headline sponsor of the Heritage Festival UK horseracing event.

Bet365 also signed a six-figure deal to sponsor ITV’s coverage of the French Open Tennis tournament in 2012. It was also the official sponsor of the super middleweight world-title boxing fight between Carl Froch and George Groves that took place in Manchester Arena in November 2013.

Software / Colour Scheme / User interface

Bet365 poker uses iPoker’s smooth and fast-paced Playtech engine. You can load up to 16 tables at a time and customise the size and layouts of the tables. Items such as the backs of the cards, your avatar and whether it’s a two or four-colour deck can be tailored, while the avatars can be switched off completely if you prefer a cleaner look.

The game client itself is instantly recognisable as it is covered with Bet365 colours and logos. The table design has gone one step further than most with a green felt combined with a mahogany floor background. The overall Bet365 experience is easy on the eye and almost looks like you’re playing in a swanky poker club.
However, one little annoyance comes when you want to close the client. It asks for confirmation and to click the Yes/No button and, despite on every other site I tested the Yes is on the left, it is on the right at Bet365. This may seem minor, but the first few times I went to exit the client I was on autopilot and clicked the left box - not realising I never logged out.

Mobile Option

Bet365 are one of the few iPoker skins that allows you to play via a mobile app. On this app you can easily check your balance and VIP status. It has the cashier functionality if you want to deposit or withdraw from your account. Of course you can also play your favourite poker game from the app. You have your full array of games including tournaments, sit & gos and cash tables inluding both speed poker and the new 6+ hold em. Overall this a great extra option that Bet365 offer.

Skin specific bonus information

Bet365 are a company looking to target the recreational player base. This is very much reflected in their bonus offer to new players. They offer one of the smallest first deposit bonuses available on the iPoker network. This shows that they are happy with the type of players that will casually make a small deposit for a night's entertainment as opposed to a grinder depositing their bankroll to take advantage of some of the larger bonuses available.

The main part of the new player package is a 100% bonus up to €100 of your first deposit. They give players ample time to clear this bonus by giving them sixty days. The bonus, for the most part, is released in €5 increments. To release each of these increments you will need to earn 450 Merit Points. The exception to this rule is that the first €1 of the bonus will be released on earning 50 Merit Points and the next €4 will be released on earning another 300 Merit Points. Overall the offer works out at just shy of a 17% rebate on the rake you pay.

In addition to the bonus, as a new players you will also receive some tournament tokens. You will gain entry into a €100 new depositors freeroll along with another tournament token worth €5. On the face of it, this offer isnt't as attractive as other options available to players. Having said that, for the casual player it gives you enough time to clear the bonus playing on a safe site.

Skin specific loyalty info

There are 4 VIP levels available to Bet365 Poker players. You’ll need to earn 1 Merit Point to achieve Bronze level and then work your way up until you reach Platinum level by earning 25,000 points. There are 15 Merit Points earned for every £1/€1/$1 in contributed rake or tournament fees you pay. The maximum amount of points you can earn per cash hand is 37.5, however there is no cap on tournaments.

Unlike other iPoker skins, you’ll need to hang around for a while before you can take advantage of the rewards system. New players are awarded Bronze level as soon as they earn 1 point, but will not be promoted until the beginning of the next month - so it is advisable to choose the end of the month as opposed to the beginning of the month to deposit. The reason being for this is that you will be upgraded to Bronze sooner, but you will have to be a member of the VIP Scheme for three months before you can claim any rewards.

On top of that, you must maintain the required VIP level or higher for a three-month period to claim that reward. For example, if you are Silver for two months and you drop to Bronze for the following month you’ll only be able to claim Bronze benefits.

The minimum cash reward available is US$50 for 7,500 points, so you’ll need to rake US$500 to claim the US$50 – it is equivalent to 10% rake back. Silver players can cash in 50,000 points for US$600 – equal to 18% rake back – while Gold players can cash in 200,000 points for US$3,500 for 26% rake back. However, you’d need to play over $350 worth of tournaments on an average a day for a year to earn those points.

If you make Platinum level and you can rack up five million points, then you can exchange them for US$165,000, meaning rake back at 49.5%. However, if you played an average of US$400 worth of tournaments a day it would take you 23 years to get the required five million points. Platinum players will also receive between US$350 and US$1,750 for free if they stay at that VIP level for 3-12 months.

You can also choose tournament tokens instead of cash at Bet365. These work out slightly better value than cash, depending on what VIP level you are. The first reward comes at €40 for 7,500 points (11%) and the best offer is €375 for 35,000 points (22%)

Bet365 is also running a €650,000 Premium Chase at the moment, with over 8,000 guaranteed prizes on offer. There’s €500,000 on offer as cash prizes to the best earning players, and the final €150,000 will be given out to 3,000 players in the Milestone draw.

Coins are awarded based on how many merit points players earn and coins are earned at different rates based on what time of the day, what games and what stakes are played. The more coins you earn, the higher up the leaderboard you will go, and once the prize pool hits €650,000 the 5,000 best performing players will all qualify for a prize.

Each time the prize pool goes up by €50,000 all players currently sitting at the tables will be entered into a draw. Some €15,000 worth of prizes are to be given out to 300 people, with an IPad mini going to the first 10, and cash amounts ranging from €10-€150 for the other 290 players. This is set to happen a total of 10 times.

Skin specific games

Bet365 Poker runs a €100 New Depositor Freeroll that takes place every Wednesday and every player that makes their first deposit will receive a token to enter.

They also have a range of ‘Premier Tables’. These cash tables have limits ranging between €4nl and €400nl and are exclusively for Bet365 players to play against each other. The traffic isn’t huge going through these though, with the lower limits having the majority of traffic with between 3-6 tables generally.

It is not exactly skin-specific, but the Bet365 Poker website shows a list of all tournaments due to commence over the next couple of hours and how many people are registered. That could be quite handy for a player on the move wanting to check the status of games. The vast majority of these games will be iPoker wide and not Bet365 specific, so it can be a handy tool for all.

Depositing / Withdrawing Info

Bet365 offers all the usual methods for depositing from Visa, Credit Card and Skrill to Ukash, Paysafe etc. The minimum amounts for deposit range from a very low €1 on Ukash, to a very high €200 through Bank Wire. Its upper limits are pretty good with up to €99,000 allowed on Click2Pay and Bank Transfer. All deposits are instant, bar the usual Bank Transfers and cheques.

You can withdraw through all the same methods as deposits, but the limits and time frames vary. Bet365 don’t make it too easy for the ‘smaller’ players, with the likes of PayPal and Neteller only allowing a minimum of €15 to be withdrawn. With Skrill and Visa/Credit Cards, it drops to €5/€10. Bank Transfers and cheques are can take up to 28 days and range from €50-150 minimum cash outs. You won’t get rich quick from Ukash though as their max cash out is only €250.

I’d never had an issue with cash out from Bet365 and it’s usually in my account in less than 6 hours.

Site Safety / Security / Reputation in Forums

Bet365 has a Thawte SSL Web Server Certificate, which is proof that it offers secure communications by encrypting all data to and from the site. It is also affiliated to IBAS (Independent Betting Adjudication Service) and has to abide by its decision on any dispute that may not be resolved to a customer’s satisfaction. Neither the website nor the client use a ‘remember me’ setting so you need to type out your username and password in full each time – which further enhances security.

On Googling about Bet365 complaints, I was shocked to find a number of results with player complaints. However, on investigating further it turned out these complaints were unfounded. In all the instances I read the player was at fault and Bet365 had done everything above board.

Bet365 Customer Support

Support is contactable 24/7 by Freephone, Fax, Post, Email, Web Message and Live Chat.

Support can take a while if you go through the website. I have been number 30-40 in the list before and had a waiting time of over 15 minutes, while at other times I’ve been able to chat straight away. Always be sure to go through the Poker client even if your query is about your sportsbook account as it seems the quickest by far. Bet365 employees are quite friendly and knowledgeable on the whole.

You will be prompted to include your personalised four-digit code if you want to talk about something specific to your own account while on Live Chat.

Positives

A highly-reputable brand across the UK and Worldwide

Live Chat is friendly and as helpful as they can be

Tidy-looking software with a great Sportsbook to match

Negatives

It is tough to clear first deposit bonus

Loyalty scheme makes it took for new players to collect any rewards

Verdict

Let's start with the negatives - Only a very elite few will realistically be able to earn the Platinum benefits at Bet365 Poker, and even they will struggle to claim the top rewards. Players making their first deposit, will be getting rake back equivalent to 15% while clearing it.

Where Bet365 stands out from the crowd is it's safety and reliability. It has an unblemished record in the online gambling industry, something which cannot be said of the majority of it's competitors. Payments are made on time, bonuses honoured and customer support is second to none.

When I play online poker, I like to know that my money is safe. Simply put, there is no other site on the iPoker network I trust as much as Bet365, hence why I have them ranked number one on this site.

If this this skin doesn't interest you, check out our Top Ten iPoker Skins!

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