Want to play online poker in Holland? A VPN will keep you safe

John Bennet Last Updated by John Bennet on May 30, 2019

Considering how liberal it is with other activities of a somewhat controversial nature – such as marijuana and prostitution – The Netherlands is a bit of a stickler when it comes to gambling, especially the online variety.

There are just 14 casinos in The Netherlands and they are the only places it is legal to play poker in all of Holland. Online gambling does exist, but poker is not offered by any of the Dutch overseers of said gambling websites, meaning those wishing to play the game online need to seek greener pastures.

Where to go for Online Poker in The Netherlands

There are currently eight online poker sites that accept customers from the Netherlands.

The Netherlands flag
Why such a low number? Because playing online poker in The Netherlands is illegal unless you’re playing on a state-approved site. This just leads to more confusion, of course, because there are no state-approved sites offering poker.

If online sites are caught allowing Dutch players access, they can be banned from Dutch IP addresses or fined. In 2013, the site Global Stars was fined €100.000 for staking seats to residents of The Netherlands.

Despite that record-setting fine, the following websites allow access to Dutch players.

  1. PokerStars
  2. Juicy Stakes
  3. Intertops Poker
  4. Full Tilt Poker
  5. Betway Poker
  6. 32Red Poker
  7. Party Poker
  8. Wild Jack Poker

Do I need a VPN to access poker sites from The Netherlands?

Virtual Private Network (VPN)
There’s no easy answer for this question. The Dutch government actively blocks some online casino websites, which makes a VPN absolutely necessary in order to either join a game or download the casino’s app for future use.

In some cases, the need stops there, as the government is only blocking the website and not the app, meaning once the app is installed on your phone, you can fire it up without any restrictions.

However, considering what playing online poker is and what’s involved – i.e. your finances – it’s probably smart to use a VPN all the time whether you’re browsing poker site reviews, attempting to download a site app, or actually playing the game.

Security is always a concern when you’re on the Internet, and when you add to that the idea that you’re accessing a site that has full knowledge of some of your financial information, the desire to protect yourself should be obvious.

What VPN should I use when playing poker online?

Like snowflakes, no VPNs are alike. However, given the nature of what online poker is, the two most important characteristics you should look for are speed and security.

  • The security component, as mentioned above, will keep any unwanted third parties, from the Dutch government to cybercriminals, from spying on your traffic.
  • Given that online poker is a real-time game that often requires quick decisions, speed is integral to giving you the best shot to emerge victorious.



PrivateVPN is a great regional choice for VPN usage since it’s based in Sweden. Its security in above or on-par with any VPN out there thanks to several features that ensure your connection stays secure end to end. These include:

  • A strict no-logs policy to cover your tracks
  • 2048-bit encryption, equal to what is used by the US military
  • An automatic kill switch – to ensure your anonymity
  • Built-in leak protection – No data left behind.

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ExpressVPN is the reigning speed champ of the industry with blazing speeds from all over the globe. Literally all over, as ExpressVPN offers servers in 94 countries – nearly half of the nations in the world.

Its security is almost as impressive as its speed. ExpressVPN offers DNS and IP leak protection, a no-logs policy, and its own version of a kill switch called the Network Lock.

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Almost always at the top of the charts for security and speed is NordVPN. It uses AES 256-bit encryptions and Double VPN tunnelling to enhance your security when you’re surfing.

With more than 5,100 servers spread across more than 60 countries worldwide, it also guarantees top speeds no matter where you’re accessing the Internet from. Like the other two entries in this section, NordVPN does not record your logs.

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Other forms of poker in The Netherlands

Rather ironically, in-person poker is quite popular for the Dutch. The Master Classics of Poker tournament is held yearly at the Amsterdam Casino and has been a staple since 1992.

In 2018, The Netherlands’ own Alberto Stegeman was the overall champion, hauling in €240.183 in the final round of play.

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John Bennet
John Bennet is an experienced data and communications engineer and cross-platform copy and content writer and editor with a keen interest in cybersecurity. He has been working with and researching, VPNs and other online privacy tools for many years.