9 Aug

Betsafe Poker – Boldly Go Where So Many Canadians have Gone Before

Unabridged Betsafe Canada Poker Review for Real Players in 2022

Betsafe Canada Poker ReviewThis isn’t just another drop in the overflowing bucket of online poker reviews. We don’t write fluff or spackle the gaps. Our reviews are based on real experience, by real players, delivered without bias. We aren’t here to tell you where to play online poker. Our goal is to give you the information and tools necessary so you can find the poker site that’s a perfect fit for you.

With that said, Betsafe Poker may be worthy of your consideration. It is one among a short list of highly distinguished, Canadian-facing operators that illustrates the exemplary qualities we look for in a poker room. It doesn’t boast the largest player base, or the highest guaranteed tournaments, but it’s got a lot to offer for both casual and dedicated poker players. We’ll tell you about all of this and more in the following…

Betsafe Canada Poker Review

Betsafe soared into existence in 2006, launching as an exclusive sports betting operation. Over the next three years, the company expanded into poker and casino gaming. With a fresh, upbeat marketing campaign, the Betsafe brand grew quickly, attracting hundreds of thousands of players, as well as the attention of one of the oldest gaming companies in the world, Betsson AB (est. 1963). In 2011, Betsson acquired all shares in Betsafe, bringing the burgeoning iGaming firm under its expansive wing.

For years, Betsafe was a proud member of Microgaming’s MPN poker network. With traffic steadily on the decline, Microgaming announced in early 2020 it would close MPN later that year. That left Betsafe scurrying for a new home, but that grey cloud had a silver lining. Betsafe found a perfect match in the iPoker Network, resulting in greater traffic and a more abundant tournament schedule. The network is currently averaging about 1,300 cash game players at any given time, and 2k+ during peak hours; a brilliant contrast to MPNs previous 450 avg/900 peak.

Ownership, Licensing and Regulation

Betsafe is owned by Betsson AB and operated by the BML Group, headquartered at the Betsson Experience Center in Malta. The poker site operates under a bulk of licenses from the Maltese Gaming Authority, the most respected iGaming jurisdiction in the EU.

That’s only the most impressive tip of the iceberg. The full list of licensing jurisdictions includes:

  • Columbia
  • Croatia
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Kenya
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Malta
  • Spain
  • Sweden

Software and Cash Games

Betsafe made the switch to the iPoker Network 2021, boosting its cash game traffic significantly. The software offers downloadable clients for PC and Mac and a native mobile application. However, the HTML5 web client is the most popular choice, as it works on all standard desktop and mobile browsers.

All editions are designed for easy, intuitive navigation, and offer customization for avid users. The software is engineered with RNG-based random shuffling mechanics that are audited monthly and certified for fairness by Technical Systems Testing (TST).

Traffic averages 1300+ at the cash tables; 2,000+ at peak hours. You won’t find any exotic games on their menu, but they offer a nice selection of all the classics, with a good range of stakes. They include:

  • Texas Holdem
    • NL – $0.01/$0.02 to $4/$10
    • PL – $0.01/$0.02 to $3/$6
    • FL – $0.02/$0.04 to $20/$40
  • Omaha Holdem
    • PL – $0.02/$0.04 to $20/$40
  • Omaha Hi/Lo
    • PL – $0.02/$0.04 to $5/$10

The most action takes place in micro-limits and low-stakes NLHE, as is to be expected from a predominately recreational poker room. You should easily find a few mid-range stakes opening at peak hours

Finding the Fish

Since moving to the iPoker Network, Betsafe’s player pool has become a lot less fishy. They are, however, predictable. The fishiest players at Betsafe Poker follow the same schooling patterns of other Canadian online poker sites. They prefer the lowest stakes and most basic game rules, so you’ll want to check the NLHE tables with limits of $0.01/$0.02 up to $1/$2 at most, or the FLHE stakes of $0.02/$0.04 to $0.10/$0.25.

Tournaments

Betsafe has more than enough SNGs and MTTs to keep a tournament grinder busy. There’s enough traffic to ensure a constant flow of SNG start-ups. Most of them seat 6-10 players, but there are some heads-up and dual-table opportunities, as well. You’ll have no trouble finding opposition at most NLHE stakes, but expect a longer wait for Omaha SNGs.

True risk-takers are drawn to Betsafe’s Twister Sit’n’Gos. A spin-off the innovative lottery-style tournaments pioneered by PokerStars several years back, these 3-player SNG tournaments deliver a random prize pool that is determined the moment the seats fill up. It could be as high as 1,000x the buy-in, which are available at anywhere from $1 to $100.

As for MTTs, the schedule is full of the usual stuff, with buy-ins ranging from $1 up into the hundreds, and prize pools based on registration. As for guaranteed tournaments, iPoker hosts a weekly schedule that accommodates players of all bankroll sizes and skill levels. Daily events include a $20, $10k GTD Fist of Fury, and a $10, $10k GTD Main Sweat. Both events boost their prize pools to $20k and $30k GTD respectively on Sundays.

Satellites and Freeroll Tournaments

Freerolls and cheap satellites to better events are a big deal at Betsafe Poker. You’ll find no less than 70 satellites on the tournament menu each and every day, featuring miniscule buy-ins. Work your way up the step ladder and you could find yourself competing in the biggest tourneys of the month for a dollar at most.

Welcome Bonus Promotion

Canadian poker players would be hard pressed to find a more accommodating welcome bonus package. Betsafe offers a choice five different bonuses to suit everyone, from the occasional player up to hard-core grinders, plus access to a New Player Freeroll worth $100.

To claim a bonus, all you need is a minimum deposit of $10. The bonus is not based on a percentage match. Instead, the bonus of your choice is paid out in 5%-10% increments once the required conditions are met. You’ll need to contribute $5 in rake and/or tournament fees for every $1 of the bonus to clear it in full.

The following is a list of all welcome bonus choices and the bonus codes to claim them. Consider their value and rake/fee requirements carefully before deciding which suits you best. Whichever you choose, you’ll have just 60 days to clear as much of the bonus as possible before it expires.

Bonus
Level
Incremental
Release Rate
Incremental/Total
Rake Needed
Bonus Code
To Claim
$25 $1 (5%) $5/$125 25MGBLACK
$75 $5 (6.67%) $25/$375 75MGBLACK
$250 $25 (10%) $125/$1,250 250MGBLACK
$500 $50 (10%) $250/$2,500 500MGBLACK
$1,000 $100 (10%) $500/$5,000 1000MGBLACK
New Player Freerolls

In addition to the first deposit bonus, new players are invited to participate in a $100 New Player Freeroll. Exclusive to new members only, you won’t have to worry too much about sharks skimming the waters.

VIP Rewards & Poker Rakeback

At Betsafe Poker, a player’s monthly LP generation will determine their VIP level. In turn, their VIP status will determine what they can exchange their LP for.

Status tiers include Silver, Gold, Platinum and Diamond. Players can exchange LP for cashback at any level, but only up to a certain percentage. The percentage allowed is equivalent to the player’s rakeback earnings, and scales from 10% up to 30%. Once the max cashback/rakeback percentage is claimed, any remaining LP can be exchanged to enter eligible multi-table tournaments.

Here’s an overview of the VIP Status tiers and associated qualifications to earn online poker rakeback.

VIP Status LP Requirement Rakeback
Silver 0-499 10.00%
Gold 500-999 15.00%
Platinum 1,000-2,999 20.00%
Diamond 3,000+ 30.00%

Deposits & Withdraws

One of the few negatives in our Betsafe Canada poker review is the succinct list of available banking methods. Credit/Debit cards, online payment processors and bank transfers are all you’ll find. In their defense, they only work with the most reputable and secure payment facilitators.

All transactions are secured with state-of-the-art encryption technologies to ensure optimum protection of your personal and financial details. The operator’s SSL encryption methods are security certified by VeriSign.

The following is a list of all banking methods available to Canadian members of Betsafe Poker. Note that, once logged in, the list may differ, based on what options are available in your location.

Payment Method
Deposit
Withdraw
Credit Card (Visa, MasterCard)
Yes
Yes
Debit Card (Visa, MasterCard)
Yes
Yes
EcoPayz
No
Yes
PaysafeCard
Yes
No
Trustly
Yes
Yes
Bank Transfer
Yes
Yes

Customer Support

As part of the Betsson Group, Betsafe boasts a multi-award-winning customer service department. It is, quite possibly, their most impressive feature, worthy of EGR recognition in 2014, and every year running from 2016-2020. The FAQ section alone is incredibly well laid out, with filters and term searching to easily find answers to all common, and some uncommon, questions.

If that doesn’t solve your issue, Betsafe provides 24/7 Live Chat support, a 24/7 Call Back service that responds within 15-60 minutes, and an Email support system that can take anywhere from 2-12 hours to respond. All of the reps are friendly, and extremely well trained and knowledgeable of the entire Betsson product line.

Awards

In finishing up our Betsafe Canada poker review, here’s a look at some of the more prestigious awards the poker site (Betsafe), its parent company (Betsson), operating house (BML Group), and software platform (iPoker), have received in recent years.

  • Excellence in Customer Service – WIG Awards 2014
  • Best Customer Service Operator – EGR Awards 2014, 2016, 2018, 2019, 2020
  • Poker Software of the Year (MPN) – EGR Awards 2015
  • Poker Network of the Year (MPN) – EGR Awards 2015
  • Customer Service Top 50 (5th Place in UK) – ICM Awards 2016

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