Winamax Poker is an independent European poker room that is focused on the poker amateurs from EU countries. At the French market this poker room outstrips the traffic of local PokerStars branch and it is an undisputed leader in France. The room passed all the necessary administrative inspections and it has a license of French gambling regulator. All kind of the games are carried out in euro.
Earlier it was necessary for the registration in the room to give your own bank code IBAN that corresponds to the European Union standards. Since 2018 this requirement became unnecessary and now it is enough to have an account of a Skrill payment system for the registration and to send to the support service the screenshots that confirm your account belongs to you.
How to sign-up for Winamax
The easiest way to create a Winamax account is to visit their website and click the Create Account button located in the top-right corner of the screen. Alternatively, you can also download the Winamax client and initiate the registration process from there. In the end, it all boils down to filling out a simple form and verifying your e-mail address.
In order to play real-money games, you will have to validate your account by sending Winamax scans of all required documents, including a government-issued ID. You will also have to declare one bank account registered in your name. When it comes to country restrictions, Winamax is available to all players from European Union member states and the countries belonging to the European Economic Area, as long as their local laws don’t prevent them from playing online poker for real money.
Winamax traffic overview
Winamax is an interesting site when it comes to traffic, as its unique situation makes it the only large poker room in which France-based poker enthusiasts can play with people from other European countries.
This is because players located within France are prohibited by law from connecting to poker sites that do not hold a French license. However, these same laws don’t prohibit France-based sites from accepting EU citizens.
Winamax sign-up bonus
Winamax offers only one welcome bonus, which can be claimed only after a player’s first deposit.
100% matched deposit bonus, up to €500
This bonus splits into five equal chunks, which credit to your account as soon as you accumulate the required loyalty points, called Miles Points. Miles are earned at a rate of four points per €1 paid in rake. In order to clear €1 of the bonus, you have to accumulate 30 Miles. Here’s an example of this system in action:
Let’s say that you deposit €100. According to the rules of this promotion, you receive a €100 bonus, which is then split into five €20 chunks. In order to clear each chunk, you need to earn 20 x 30 = 600 Miles
In theory, Winamax offers a wide selection of poker games, which can only be matched by what’s available on PokerStars. Realistically speaking, most players focus exclusively on No-Limit Hold’em and Pot-Limit Omaha, leaving all niche game tables empty. The sad truth is that only PokerStars is capable of attracting enough traffic to keep formats like Razz or 8-game poker somewhat active. Really, offering them on a smaller site doesn’t impact the overall player experience. That being said, the cash game Hold’em action on Winamax is essentially on par with what you’d find on partypoker or 888.
- No Limit Hold’em
Winamax only offers Texas Hold’em in no-limit format. Available blinds start at €0.01/€0.02 and go all the way up to €25/€50. Most of the action focuses on the 9-max and 5-max micro stakes games. However, even €1/€2 players should be able to afford to be picky about table selection on most days. For any serious high-limit action, players should log-in during
- Pot Limit Omaha
Winamax offers three pot-limit variants: PLO, PL Omaha 5, and PL Omaha Hi/Lo. Stakes range from €0.01/€0.02 to
- Dead games
As briefly touched on above, Winamax offers many cash game formats that its player pool simply can’t sustain
Finding someone to play against is next to impossible even during peak traffic hours though. From time to time you might find a lonely soul sitting at one of the low stakes tables, but generally speaking, you shouldn’t expect to get any serious action.
Winamax multi-table tournaments
With dozens of MTTs hosted every week, Winamax boasts over €10,000,000 in tournament guarantees every month. Some of the major tournaments include:
- Knockout Tournaments
- Deepstack Tournaments
- Turbo Tournaments
- Kill The Champions Tournaments
- Two in one Fish&Ship Tournament
- Monster Stack Tournaments
- Omaha Tournaments
The options are really too numerous to list. Nevertheless, we will spotlight a few recurring Winamax events, as they definitely deserve your attention.
The Winamax Main Event
- €100,000 guaranteed
- Four day 1s on Sunday and Monday
- Tuesday finals
- €150 buy-in
- Tickets awarded to players who place high in regular tournaments
La Fievre Tournaments
- Up to €50,000 on Sundays
- €25,000 to €30,000 throughout the week
- €10 buy-in
- Special table theme and sounds
Mini Event – the small Main Event
- Four day 1s on Sunday and Monday
- Tuesday finals
- €15 buy-in
The Grand Tournament
- €100,000 guaranteed
- €1,000 buy-in
- Plenty of ways to qualify, including €1 satellites
Rewards club levels
Below is a complete list of available levels along with their Miles requirements, associated multipliers, and rakeback percentage. Rakeback numbers assume that the player spends all their Miles on purchasing €10 cash bonuses, which are worth 770 Miles each:
- Platinum – 6,000 miles per month or more – 2.5x multiplier – 12.5% rakeback
- Diamond I – 50,000 to 99,999 miles per year – 3x multiplier – 15% rakeback
- Diamond II – 100,000 to 249,999 miles per year – 3.5x multiplier – 17.5% rakeback
- Diamond III – 250,000 to 499,999 miles per year – 4x multiplier – 20% rakeback
- Diamond IV – 500,000 to 999,999 miles per year – 4.5x multiplier – 22.5% rakeback
- Diamond V – 1,000,000 to 2,499,999 miles per year – 5x multiplier – 25% rakeback
- Red Diamond – 2,500,000 miles per year – 6x multiplier – 30% rakeback
- Generally speaking, the amount of rakeback from this program is not satisfactory. Earning a 12.5 percent rakeback deal requires the player to pay well over €1,000 in rake. By comparison, paying so much money on partypoker would earn you a 40-percent deal
Considering the state of the online poker industry these days, the best that can be said about this system is that it exists, and thus allows you to get some additional bang for your buck.
Winamax deposit/withdrawal options
Unlike the other sites that offer their services to Europe-based players, Winamax doesn’t give you access to all that many banking options. This is somewhat understandable considering France-based sites abide by stricter rules than offshore businesses operating from territories that are well-known for their extremely iGaming-friendly regulations.
Winamax offers following payment methods:
- Visa/MasterCard – the minimum deposit size is €15
- Wire transfer – large deposits only. Funds will credit to your account within a few days
- Neteller, Skill, PayPal – your payment will be processed instantly, and the minimum deposit size is still €15
Pre-paid card (Paysafecard, Ticket Surf) – lower deposit limits that vary from card to another. Winamax does not accept pre-paids purchased in Germany.
This is where French regulations start getting really obnoxious. Winamax withdrawals are only available via wire transfer. Moreover, Winamax is required by law to confirm the identity of each customer before authorizing a cash-out. This means that you’ll be required to provide additional photocopies of your ID when making your first withdrawal.
All in all, the truth is that Winamax fails to live up to the standards that were set by its rivals. While their peculiar circumstances render this state of affairs somewhat defendable, their average customer is unlikely to care about any excuses.
Winamax Poker App
One of the most appealing aspects of the Winamax Poker app is that it is actually an app, and not just a website you visit (though it appears that you can also log in via your browser and play on the site that way, if you have a Flash-compatible device).
Currently, you can download an app for the iPhone (iOS 4.3 or later), iPad and it is also compatible with the iPod Touch if it is running a compatible operating system. The app has been optimised for the iPhone 5 series.
In addition, you can download the Winamax Poker app onto your Android smartphone and tablet, provided that it has an ARMv7 processor.
This app can be downloaded direct from the Winamax site as it is not currently available on Google Play. What is pleasing is that Winamax have seemingly tested a large number of different Android devices and found that the following are compatible with the app:
- HTC Desire HD
- LG Optimus Black
- Sony Ericsson Xperia Kyno
- Motorola Atrix
- Samsung Galaxy S
- HTC Desire S
- Sony Ericsson Xperia ARC
- Sony Ericsson Xperia PLAY
- HTC Sensation
- Samsung Nexus S
- LG Optimus 3G
While this list is not exhaustive, you will need to have an Android tablet or smartphone running at least an ARMv7 processor and a later operating system in order to get the device to work. Winamax Poker App Reviewed When the table software loads up, you are presented with a typical poker game. The graphics are not particularly spectacular, but the speed of the app is generally very good and the animations are smooth and the sounds also enhance the play too.
The gameplay itself moves along at a relatively rapid pace and the time each player is given to act is set at a sensible level, so that if someone is disconnected (which did seem to happen relatively frequently), the speed of the gameplay at the table is not unduly affected. A nice touch for difficult decisions was a players ability to click on a timer button which gave them an additional 60 seconds time to make a key decision, although you can only use this option once in each hand. It was a nice feature however and certainly helped out when facing a tricky call that required a little additional thinking time.
The Expresso games are worth a look as they give players a chance to play for much larger potential cash wins than their buy in would ordinarily allow and given that only three players are at each table, your chances of success are generally pretty good, if you are a half-decent player.