Most (but not all) USA-friendly poker sites take Mastercard as a deposit option because so many players have a Mastercard in their back pocket. Whether it is a credit card, a debit card, or a pre-paid card, Mastercard is one of the most popular payment methods used through the USA.
Mastercard is a relatively cheap way for poker sites to accept deposits. The transaction fees are pretty low compared to some e-wallets; so online poker sites accepting MasterCard are pretty happy to absorb the cost of the transaction and credit players´ accounts with the full amount of their deposit.
Real Money Poker with MasterCard Deposits
There is a huge number of benefits when you play real money poker with MasterCard deposits. Depositing into accounts at MasterCard poker sites is quick and easy – and secure. It is just like any online purchase.
You simply tap in your card details and the value of your deposit; and, within a few seconds, the funds will be credited to your account.
You just enter your card details and the amount you want to deposit and, within a few seconds, the funds will be credited to your account.
All the poker sites accepting MasterCard transact deposits over an encrypted connection. There is no risk of your card details being intercepted while you are making a deposit when your connection is encrypted. Some of the sites offer a quick deposit option as well – where your card details are stored on a secure server, so that you only have to enter them once and can reload your account with the click of a button.
Your bank or card issuer also provides a certain level of protection against the fraudulent use of your card details – although this is very unlikely to happen at online poker sites that accept MasterCard, because of the negative publicity that would result and the loss of business the site would experience. Basically, you are in safe hands when you play real money poker with MasterCard deposits in the USA.
Poker Sites Where You Can Deposit with MasterCard
MasterCard poker sites offer high acceptance rates and fast processing of your deposits. When you make your first deposit with a MasterCard on a poker site, you will also be able to take advantage of some bankroll-enhancing poker bonuses and some potentially lucrative poker promotions.
The Advantage Mastercard has over Other Payment Options
The advantage Mastercard has over other payment options is convenience. Most players already have a Mastercard-backed bank card and, if not, Mastercard-backed pre-paid cards and gift cards can be purchased at selected stores or online (see below for details). There are usually no fees for loading a Mastercard with funds (if it is not already linked to your bank account) or taking cash out at an ATM.
For players who prefer to keep their poker bankrolls separate from their general funds, Mastercard-backed pre-paid cards and gift cards are an excellent option. They are easy to purchase, manage and reload; plus, if you run out of cash and need to buy something from the corner store in an emergency, you can simply run down there with your pre-paid Mastercard provided you have funds on your card.
Furthermore, because Mastercard-backed pre-paid cards and gift cards are not credit cards, you are less likely to spend more than you can comfortably afford to lose. This is because once your pre-paid Mastercard balance has gone, you have to make a conscious decision to either reload your card or use an alternative funding source to continue playing poker. Whoever would have thought that the historically anti-gambling Mastercard company would be contributing to responsible gambling!
How to Get a Mastercard-Backed Pre-Paid Card
There are two options for getting a Mastercard-backed pre-paid card. You can either visit a store that stocks pre-paid cards or order one online. The advantages of purchasing a pre-paid card from a store is that you can buy it for cash and it is activated immediately. If you order a pre-paid Mastercard online, you can´t use cash and you have to wait for the card to arrive before being able to activate it.
However, although the store option may be more convenient for some people, not all pre-paid cards and gift cards available in stores are suitable for funding an online poker account. This is because some – particularly gift cards – are for domestic use only and won´t be accepted by USA-friendly poker sites that use offshore payment processors. The card has to be capable of making international payments.
Another thing to look out for is whether the terms and conditions of the pre-paid card permit gambling transactions. Some do and some don´t, and it is a lot more convenient to read through the terms and conditions of the card from the comfort of your PC or mobile than it is by the counter of a store. We found several online sources that support international transactions and don´t restrict the card´s use.
How to Make a Deposit at a Poker Site with a Mastercard
Naturally, online poker sites are keen to make it as simply as possible for players to fund their accounts, so the process for making a deposit at a poker site with a Mastercard is really straightforward:
- Simply select which poker site you would like to play at from the above list (you can read our reviews of each site first if that will help you make your mind up).
- Download and install the software – taking care to read the terms and conditions of playing at the site to avoid any potential hiccups later.
- Create your account by completing the online registration form – remembering to enter any bonus codes where they are requested.
- Usually, you will have to wait a few minutes for an email to arrive welcoming you to the poker site and asking you to verify your email address.
- Once you have verified your email address, navigate to the cashier section of the poker client or visit the site´s cashier from a web browser.
- Select Mastercard as the deposit option, enter the card number, its expiry date, the CVC number on the back of the card and the amount you want to deposit.
- Within a few seconds, the value of your deposit will be credited to your account and you can start playing online poker for real money.
In some circumstances, you will be asked to complete a credit card authorization form before being allowed to play for real money – even if you have deposited using a pre-paid card. Although this can be an inconvenient distraction, the purpose of the credit card authorization form is to verify your ID and protect your account against fraud.
Verifying your ID is a necessary step to complete before you are allowed to withdraw your winnings from any online poker site, so it has to be done at some time, and you might as well get it out of the way sooner rather than later. Imagine the frustration if you enjoy a big win, go to withdraw your funds, and have to temper your excitement while you get the necessary paperwork out of the way.
The Downside of Playing Poker with MasterCard in the US
Unfortunately there is a downside of playing poker with a Mastercard in the US. Although Mastercard deposits have a high acceptance rate, your deposit is not guaranteed to be accepted. This is not a reflection on your poker site´s credibility, but more to do with your card issuer being nervous about gambling transactions.
In fact, such is the randomness of declined Mastercard poker site deposits that you could have a deposit initially declined and then accepted when you try again thirty minutes later. We believe that the paranoia of card issuers varies according to how much coffee they have drunk, so maybe it is not best to try making a deposit with a Mastercard on a poker site first thing in the morning!
The other downside of playing poker with a Mastercard in the US is that you cannot withdraw your winnings back to your card. This is not a downside that is unique to poker players in the US – poker players from all over the world have to put up with the same inconvenience. When you enjoy a winning session on poker sites that accept Mastercard as a deposit option, you will have to use an alternative withdrawal method such as a check or a wire to your bank.
MasterCard Poker Sites Q&A
Can you play online poker with a MasterCard in the US?
Absolutely. It is one the best poker deposit options there is because of its speed, cost and convenience.
What costs are associated with depositing on a poker site with a MasterCard?
The poker site will not charge you anything, but your bank or card issuer might regard your deposit as a “cash advance” and charge you a small percentage of the deposit amount.
What is the minimum I can deposit on a poker site with a MasterCard?
Poker sites have different limits for the minimum and maximum amounts you can deposit with a Mastercard. As a guide, the minimum deposit allowed is usually $50.00.
What should I do if my MasterCard poker deposit is declined?
Call the poker site´s customer services department. Most poker sites that accept Mastercard as a deposit option have a toll-free number you can call. The site´s customer service representative will try to process the deposit manually or suggest you use an alternative option.