888 Poker offers a relatively small no-deposit bonus, and the largest first-deposit bonus, in all of New Jersey. Except for the daily $50 guaranteed freeroll, the online poker room does not offer any meaningful recurring promotions to casual players.
888’s VIP program is below average – most players should not expect more than 8-10 percent rakeback. Their cash game offering is poor, which is a recurring theme across all online casinos in New Jersey and has more to do with player pool size than anything else. On the flip side, MTT and SnG junkies should find decent action, particularly during peak hours.
Bonuses for new players on 888 Poker
Registering your first player account with 888 Poker entitles you to the following:
$20 no-deposit bonus
You’ll receive $20, completely free, after successfully verifying your account. Please note that only half of this bonus is for poker play (the remaining $10 is for casino play):
- $4 can be used to play cash games
- $6 will be awarded as six one-dollar tournament tickets
Unused bonus funds and tickets expire after seven days.
Any winnings generated from bonus tournament tickets are unrestricted, and can be withdrawn on demand. However, in order to withdraw any piece of the cash game bonus, a player must accumulate three Status Points per dollar.
Considering one Status Point is awarded for every $0.50 paid in rake and tournament fees, it is easy to calculate that clearing the whole $4 cash game bonus costs $6. This translates to 66 percent rakeback.
Considering only $10 of the bonus is for poker play, of which only $4 can be used to play cash games, as well as the short seven day expiration time, we rank this no-deposit offer as below average by New Jersey standards. For comparison, consider that Borgata offers $20 for poker play, while Pala Poker offers $15.
Still, free money is free money, and the 66 percent rakeback value on the $4 cash game chunk is excellent.
100% first deposit bonus, up to $1,500
Make your first deposit of $10 or more and receive a bonus equal to your deposit, up to a maximum of $1,500. This bonus will be released to your bankroll in $10 chunks, at a rate of 100 Bonus Points per chunk (we’ll get to Bonus Points in the next section). For example: deposit $200 to receive a $200 bonus, which will be released in 20 equal chunks.
In terms of pure bonus size, $1,500 is the best you can get from a New Jersey poker room. To put this figure in perspective, note that competitors offer between $400 and $600. This means that 888’s bonus is 250 percent larger than the next-best offer on the market.
Deposit bonus rakeback value
As stated earlier, bonus funds are released at a rate of $10 per 100 accumulated Bonus Points (BPs) or, put another way, $1 per 10 BPs. Players are awarded one BP for every $0.50 paid in fees and rake, which means for every $5 paid, the poker room gives $1 in return. This is equivalent to 20 percent rakeback.
While the $1,500 bonus size is the best in New Jersey, the 20 percent rakeback equivalency is the poorest available. For some perspective, consider that Borgata’s first deposit bonus translates to 25 percent rakeback, while PartyPoker’s and PokerStars‘ are equivalent to 50% and 55%, respectively.
Overall, we recommend the following to players looking for a first deposit bonus with the best absolute value:
– Players looking to make a first deposit of $600 or less may wish to look for an alternative.
– Players looking to deposit more than $600 will find 888’s bonus unmatched.
Other promotions and offers
888 Poker features recurring daily, weekly, and monthly freerolls. These are played between 19:00 and 21:30, depending on the day, and feature guaranteed prize pools from $50 (played daily) to $3,000 (last Saturday of each month). Note that some freerolls are available to all players, while other freerolls can only be accessed by players ranked Silver or higher.
Overall, there’s very little variety available in terms of recurring promotions – an area where 888 Poker could definitely use some improvement.
At 888 Poker, you will earn two Status Points (SPs) for every $1 paid in rake or tournament fees. The number of SPs you have at the end of a calendar month determines your placement:
- Blue: everyone starts here – requires zero SPs
- Iron: 50 SPs
- Bronze: 200 SPs
- Silver: 3,000 SPs
- Gold: 6,000 SPs
- Platinum: 20,000 SPs
Status Points are reset at the beginning of a new calendar month, and the number of accumulated SPs determines your status for both the current as well as the next month. For example, if you earn 200 SPs from Nov. 1 to Nov. 25, you’ll be placed in Bronze tier for the remaining five days of November as well as the whole month of December, despite all Status Points resetting on Dec. 1.
Each tier is associated with access to different exclusive freerolls. Examples:
– All players, regardless of tier, can register for a daily $50 guarantee freeroll
– Players ranked Iron or higher additionally receive access to a $375 guarantee freeroll every Friday.
– A monthly $3,000 guarantee freeroll is available to players ranked Silver or higher.
In addition to earning Status Points, 888 poker players also earn Reward Points (RPs), which are accrued at the following rates:
- Blue: 2.5 RPs per SP earned
- Iron: 4 RPs per SP earned
- Bronze: 5 RPs per SP earned
- Silver: 7.5 RPs per SP earned
- Gold: 10 RPs per SP earned
- Platinum: 17.5 RPs per SP earned
RPs serve as the poker room’s cash-back mechanism – $10 in cash are awarded in exchange for every 1,000 Reward Points earned.
RPs expire if a player’s account is deemed completely inactive for 90 days.
Loyalty program rakeback value
Considering the number of Reward Points earned varies by account tier, we differentiate the following rakeback offers:
- Blue: 5%
- Iron: 8%
- Bronze: 10%
- Silver: 15%
- Gold: 20%
- Platinum: 35%
For example, in order to regularly receive 15 percent rakeback, you would need to permanently maintain a Silver account status, which means accumulating a minimum of 3,000 Status Points every calendar month. This translates to $1,500 in monthly tournament fees and cash game rake. The highest 35 percent rakeback deal is available to players who pay $10,000 in rake and fees per month, making it all but impossible to achieve by anyone except the most hard-core of poker players.
Given the structure of 888’s loyalty program, we conclude that the average player should not expect more than 10 percent rakeback. The offer is therefore mediocre by New Jersey standards. Players looking to obtain better rakeback for much lower rake contribution should have a look at PokerStars NJ.
888 Poker’s player pool is, unfortunately, as small as that of other poker rooms in New Jersey. Expect an average of a few dozen cash game players during typical hours, and a total average of 80 across the room. Things look better, but still disappointing, during peak hours, when upwards of 200 active players can be found.
Available cash games
888’s cash game selection is small and straightforward:
Available only in six- and nine-handed no-limit format. Micro stakes start at $0.01/$0.02 and go up to $0.02/$0.04. Other available stakes include:
The highest available stakes as of this writing are $50/$100. The bulk of 888 Poker’s cash game action takes place at the $0.01/$0.02, $0.10/$0.20, and $0.25/$0.50 tables. High-stakes tables are typically empty, with only one or two heads-up games running during peak hours.
When it comes to Omaha, 95 percent of available tables are pot-limit, and the rest are no-limit. Unfortunately, there’s almost no action to be had here outside of peak hours – and even then don’t expect more than two or three active tables. Stakes range from $0.02/$0.04 to $5/$10, with most action (when there’s any) taking place around the $0.25/$0.50 mark.
That’s pretty much all there is as far as real money cash games are concerned. There’s also a Stud poker section in the lobby, but it seems to be empty throughout the day.
In summary, 888 Poker could definitely use some cash game variety. However, to their credit, adding more cash games would probably not make a measurable difference at this point in time – perhaps in the feature, when the player pool is larger.
888 Poker’s tournament selection is definitely better than their cash game offering.
Sit ‘n’ Go tournaments
The majority of SnGs are played in no-limit Texas Hold’em format, with buy-ins ranging from $1 to $100 – although the bulk of what’s active falls in the $1 – $5 range. A few PL Omaha SnGs are available as well, mostly with low buy-ins of $2 or less. Most tournaments are six-max, although heads-up and nine-handed varieties can be found occasionally, too.
Apart from the daily $50 freeroll and multiple other freerolls available exclusively to the most active poker players, 888 Poker is host to a plethora of MTTs. The typical tournament sees between 40 and 150 registrations, with low-buy-in tournaments obviously experiencing the most action.
Around 95 percent of MTTs are NLHE, with the remaining five percent taken up by PLO. A seat at most MTTs costs between $1 and $15, however, tournaments with a buy-in of $100 or more are occasionally available as well, mostly as part of some larger poker series.
Some examples of tournaments include:
- $500 Jumbo ($500 guaranteed, $12 buy-in, 10,000 starting chips, blinds increase every 12 minutes)
- $50 GTD Omaha ($5 buy-in, $50 guaranteed, 3,000 starting chips, blind increase every 10 minutes, unlimited re-buys for $5 each),
- Turbo K.O. (NLHE, $1 buy-in, 3,000 starting chips, five-minute levels)
There are between 15 and 30 MTTs played on any given day in total.
Blast Sit’n’Gos: Blast SnGs are lottery tournaments, similar in structure to PokerStars’ Spin n’ Go. Each tournament is played four-handed, with $0.10, $1, $5, and $30 buy-ins available.
Once all four seats are taken, the fun begins: the prize pool size is determined at random and can range from 2x to 10,000x the size of your buy-in. This means that, while highly unlikely, it is possible to compete for a $10,000 prize pool in a Blast tournament with a $1 buy-in.
Once the prize pool is determined, players compete against one another in an ultra-fast-paced format, while a timer counts down in the background. Once the counter hits zero, all players go all-in automatically until a winner is determined.
All in all, 888 Poker’s New Jersey tournament selection is on par with what is offered by competitors. PokerStars is the only room with more MTT and SnG variety.
Deposit and withdrawal methods
You can fund your 888 Poker bankroll using all the popular payment processing channels:
- ACH Transfer
- Mastercard and Visa
- Online banking
- Casino cage
The quickest and most reliable deposit options are ACH transfer, online banking, and e-Wallets – all three are instant and the least likely to be rejected. Credit card payments sound good on paper, but unfortunately suffer from rejection rates upwards of 30 percent.
If none of the online deposit methods are viable, players can deposit cash at 7-Eleven stores or at a Caesars Atlantic City casino cage, the latter of which carries the highest transaction limits.
As for withdrawals, these can be requested via any of the following:
- Neteller and PayPal
- Caesars Atlantic City casino cage
- Check by courier
If you made a deposit using Neteller or PayPal, you will only be allowed to withdraw to that same e-wallet – which is quick and convenient. Otherwise, we recommend ACH and, for larger transactions and if time is not an issue, check by courier.
888 Poker NJ
888's land-based New Jersey partner is Caesars Atlantic City, and the poker room operates under permit number NJIGP 15-007, issued by New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement.