PokerStars vs GGPoker: Which is Better for You?

pokerstars vs ggpoker

5 minutes

Last Updated: April 5, 2024

PokerStars and GGPoker have been the two main competitors for the number one spot in the international online poker market for years.

GGPoker has managed to climb to the top and overtake PokerStars in the list of the biggest online poker sites, but the two still remain largely competitive.

If you are considering playing at one of these two online poker giants, you surely want to know how they compare in different areas and which site is better for you.

We have compared PokerStars vs GGPoker to find out which site is best for different types of poker players.

PokerStars vs. GGPoker  – Who Offer Better Bonuses?

Welcome Bonus100% up to $600100% up to $600
AlternativeN/A$100 in Free Rewards
Clearance Rate33%20%
Bonus Period90 Days90 Days

When choosing where to play, players often consider the welcome bonus package as a big part of the attraction.

Both PokerStars and GGPoker offer valuable welcome bonus packages, but GGPoker has a more attractive offer for new players.

At both sites, players are welcome to a 100% deposit bonus on their first deposit worth up to $600. However, new players who deposit at GGPoker can choose to claim up to $100 in free rewards instead, with a $20 deposit enough to activate the offer.

If you choose the $600 deposit bonus, the PokerStars bonus is cleared at a rate of $5 for every $15 paid in rake and tournament fees, while the GGPoker bonus is cleared at a rate of $1 for every $5 paid.

Both poker sites offer occasional reload bonuses, with PokerStars being especially active in offering retention bonuses to previously active players.

Verdict: PokerStars welcome bonus is better for players looking to make bigger deposits and grind a lot of volume, while GGPoker welcome bonus is better for new players looking for instant rewards.

PokerStars vs. GGPoker – Player Reward Programs

PokerStars vs GGPoker bonuses

Both PokerStars and GGPoker offer highly competitive rewards programs that were revamped in early 2024 to be even more favorable for players.

  • PokerStars Rewards program offers between 15% and 40% in rakeback.
  • GGPoker’s Fish Buffer scheme offers between 15% and 60% in returns.

However, in order to have more than 40% in rakeback at GGPoker, you have to play reasonably high stakes and put in a lot of volume, making it only relevant for the players in the biggest games on the site.

Rakeback at PokerStars is now paid at a flat rate and in cash, while GGPoker rakeback is paid through a spin of the wheel that can land you a reward bigger or smaller than the average you expect. This is true all the way up to Platinum Whale rank, which requires 3,000,000 points to achieve and is reserved for the top-ranking players.

Verdict: PokerStars rakeback is more consistent and a better option for all players at lower stakes. That said, the highest stakes players and those who play a lot will have a better return at GGPoker.

GGPoker vs. PokerStars – Who Offer Better Games?

pokerstars vs ggpoker games

When it comes to the availability of poker games, both of these poker giants offer a wide range of options, whether you are looking for cash games or tournament poker.

Both sites have rich daily and weekly tournament schedules, as well as a variety of tournament series that run on a periodic basis.

PokerStars festivals like WCOOP and SCOOP are legendary events, while GGPoker runs online WSOP events and other series that parry the COOP series in volume.

  • GGPoker offers more volume across different cash game stakes and a generally softer player pool, with many recreational players from different parts of the world playing on the site.
  • PokerStars is the king of mixed games and the only online poker site that offers daily tournaments in games like Seven Card Stud, 2-7 Triple Draw, 8-Game, and Badugi.

On the other hand, GGPoker offers a variety of unique game formats like Spin & Gold, All-In or Fold, Flip&Go, and Battle Royale that players can enjoy.

It is worth noting that there is a lot more traffic in higher stakes cash games at GGPoker, and that the daily tournaments get much bigger prize pools at the world’s biggest poker room.

Here is a quick rundown of the different game formats you can play on a daily basis across the two poker sites:

Cash GamesNLH $0.01/$0.02 to $200/$400, PLO $0.01/$0.02 to $200/$400NLH $0.01/$0.02 to $5/$10, PLO $0.01/$0.02 to $10/$20
MTTsRe-Entry, PKO, Mystery Bounty, PLO, and MoreRe-Entry, PKO, Mystery Bounty, PLO, Mixed Games, and More
SNGs$0.25 to $1,000 
Jackpot SNGsSpin & GoSpin & Gold
Fast Fold PokerZoom PokerRush & Cash
Mixed GamesCash Games and TournamentsOnly Omaha & 6+ Hold’em
Special Game FormatsKick Off, Power PathAll In or Fold, Battle Royale, Flip and Go

Verdict: GGPoker offers bigger player pools and prize pools in the most popular game variations. However, PokerStars is still dominant in Mixed Games and seasonal tournament series like WCOOP and SCOOP.

GGPoker vs PokerStars – Software & Mobile Support

GGPoker vs PokerStars Software

GGPoker and PokerStars are both at the top of the industry and offer high-end poker platforms for desktop and mobile users.

While both platforms offer a range of special features to make gameplay and multi-tabling more convenient, GGPoker also includes an integrated poker tracking software called PokerCraft.

That said, GGPoker does not allow the use of third-party software like PokerTracker and Hold’em Manager, while PokerStars still supports these useful tools used by many poker professionals.

In terms of mobile poker apps, both are quite player-friendly. PokerStars app is available for download in the official stores, while you will have to download the GGPoker mobile clients through the operator’s website.

Verdict: Both platforms offer a high-quality online poker experience, ease of multi-tabling, and are available across all popular operating systems and devices.

Final Verdict

There is little to separate PokerStars and GGPoker, as these are two of the best operators in the world of online poker these days.

  • GGPoker offers more volume, especially at the higher stakes, and bigger tournament prize pools on a daily basis, making it superior for players looking to play these game formats.
  • PokerStars offers a slightly more valuable deposit bonus with a better clearance rate. Its rewards program does not include gambling and now offers flat-rate rakeback across all levels.

You will be able to enjoy all the most popular game formats across different stakes at all hours of day and night. Player quality varies but is probably slightly lower overall at GGPoker as more recreational players play on this platform.

At the end of the day, the choice between these two operators depends heavily on the type of games you are looking to play and other elements we described on this page.

We recommend that you review the detailed descriptions we provided here and make up your mind based on your personal preferences and requirements. Check our full PokerStars review and GGPoker review for more information.

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