Poker in Cologne:
Live, Cashgames, Tournaments

Poker for real money in Köln in Nordrhein-Westfalen with 1.085.664 (31. Dez. 2018) inhabitants, is only legally in casinos.

Only in the national casinos in Nordrhein-Westfalen are real money tournaments of Texas Hold'em permitted, because according to legislation in Deutschland poker is a game of luck. On this page we inform you about all the available possibilities to play poker in Köln and clarify the legal framework in Nordrhein-Westfalen.

We show you how and where you can play Poker Cologne
We show you how and where you can play Poker Cologne .

Legal notice: Is it legal to play poker Cologne ?

Legal notice
Legal notice: Is it legal to play poker Cologne ? © Unsplash

Poker can fulfill in Nordrhein-Westfalen and thus also in Köln the criminal offence of illegal gambling §§ 284, 285 StGB. Punishment according to these regulations is not rare if one organizes a public game of luck or takes part in it based on § 285 StGB.

Is poker a game of chance?

The problem of whether poker is a game of luck is still not answered. It is enough to know that the law in Deutschland and therefore also in Köln defines poker as a game of luck. The difference is that state casinos in Nordrhein-Westfalen have a license under § 284 I StGB. Playing poker there is legal.

Not inconsiderable use, exception: material prize tournaments

Non-cash prize tournaments are the only form of poker not prohibited in Köln and are not seen as gambling. However, the winnings may not be paid out of the entry fees. This option lacks the constituent element of the offence stake and based on the law in Nordrhein-Westfalen it is therefore no gambling. There is no accurate amount for a maximum registration fees for private tournaments in Köln. But with 15€ you are on the safer side. According to case law, the relevance of the stake is then missing.

Poker in restaurants in Köln

Notably for restaurants the criminal side is very risky. There is high risk of losing the official permission to operate a restaurant in Köln if you make yourself liable to prosecution under § 284 StGB.

Conclusion

  • Playing poker for real cash is basically prohibited in Deutschland and therefore also in Köln, unless you do not play in public places or regulary.
  • A derogation are the prize tourney in Köln, because according to the legislation it's not defined as gambling due to lack of stakes.
  • The casinos in Deutschland have a licence.
  • Often it is very difficult for the authorities in Köln to prove prohibited gambling.

Please note that the information provided does not constitute legal advice under the law and cannot replace legal advice, as such advice always requires knowledge of all individual circumstances, in particular of the specific individual case.

Cashgames: Real money poker games in Cologne

Cashgames: Real money poker games in Cologne © Unsplash

Attention: Poker for real money is not allowed in public! You have to travel to one of the various casinos in the region of Köln. If you don't want to play in a casino but still don't wanna miss poker cash games, you can evaluate Home Games, which are highly regulated.

Poker tournaments in Cologne

Poker tourneys in Köln are allowed under certain conditions. Tournaments are allowed as long as no real money is paid out, but the award is a non-cash prize. In addition, big poker tournaments take place often in Nordrhein-Westfalen! Current tournaments can be seen in the tournament schedule. For example, at the German Poker Days you can poker for a ticket to the King's Poker trip with the King's Special in Nordrhein-Westfalen. The Poker Bundesliga is also a frequent organizer of poker tournaments in the cities in Nordrhein-Westfalen.

Poker Clubs: The best poker rooms in Cologne

Other options are available by the many poker clubs & rooms with poker events in and around Köln. In Köln there is a diverese poker room scene with various tournaments with non-cash prizes. Here is a small overview:

  • Entertainment Poker Hürth e.V.
  • Texas Hold'em Club Bochum
  • Allin-Pokerfreunde Niederrhein e.V.
  • Angry Dice e.V.
  • One-Out-Club Willich-Anrath e.V.
  • Poker Live Köln
    Weidengasse 54, 50668 Köln, Germany
  • Deaf Poker Wiesbaden e.V.
    Hessenring 8, 65474 Bischofsheim, Germany
  • Mülheim Poker und Integrationsverein e.V.
    Goethestraße 19, 45468 Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany
  • Big ALs Poker e.V.
    Hanns-Lamers-Platz 2A, 47533 Kleve, Germany
  • Shark Poker
    Sodinger Str. 561a, 44628 Herne, Germany
  • Halle37 - Clubhaus vom Pokerclub und Rennbahnclub
    Heinkelstraße 37, 48712 Gescher, Germany
  • Poker-Freunde Ratingen e. V.
    Fichtenhain 11, 40885 Ratingen, Germany
  • V.I.P. Pokerverein e.V. c/o Ismail Bulut
    Bachstraße 54, 41239 Mönchengladbach, Germany
  • Cyber Lounge Poker Club e.V.
    Kölner Str. 248, 40227 Düsseldorf, Germany
  • Down-Under-Poker-Verein e.V.
    Saarbrücker Str. 42, 42289 Wuppertal, Germany
  • Pokerverein Wupper Poker e.V.
    Kapellenweg 73, 42285 Wuppertal, Germany
  • Hold em Cologne e.V.
    Barbarastraße 3, 50735 Köln, Germany
  • Astro Poker Hürth e.V.
    Severinusstraße 42, 50354 Hürth, Germany
  • OTC-Pokerverein Viersen e.V.
    Gladbacher Str. 189, 41747 Viersen, Germany

Live poker in casinos near by Cologne

In the city center of Köln you will currently not find a casino with poker rooms. Nordrhein-Westfalen located its casinos mostly in small towns and outside the heart of the city. It is however no problem to access them by car or public transport. Most have on top an own transfer busses. In case you want to go by your own car, all casinos offer spacious park possibilities for poker players. This year you can see a large selection of poker games in each casino in Deutschland. There are a lot of games and events where you can join. At Poker-in.com you'll see a summary, sorted by federal states, of the best places offering poker with their particular schedule and all other information. Near Köln you will be able to reach minimum two casinos with decent travel times and attractive live poker offers.

Best Poker Players from Cologne

The following list shows you the Top 10 poker players with the highest tournament winnings from Cologne.

Homegames: Pokern for real money in Cologne in private locations

In Köln the laws of the federal state Nordrhein-Westfalen applies. In order not be prohibited to play poker home games in Köln you have to take care of the following:

Do you play publicly?

If the poker game is not public, it can be legal in general and does not have to justify any criminal liability. A poker round is public after the jurisdiction in Nordrhein-Westfalen, if "it is made outwardly recognizably accessible to a not firmly closed circle of acquaintances". An example of this is the poker for big amounts of money in Köln's bars, which normally anyone can join. Attention, this is forbidden!

Habituality

According to case law in Nordrhein-Westfalen can: "However, a closed society in which a game of chance is customarily held is also considered public according to § 285 II StGB". If the round takes place habitually, it is not allowed in private rooms in Köln as well as in public. For example, if money games are held for every week on the similar day, it does not matter if it is a private room or not. Both are illegal.

The best Online Poker Rooms in comparison

If you are looking for a fast way to play poker in Köln, we recommend online poker. There are many established providers where you can play poker for real cash. After some twenty years of online poker history, several providers proofed themselfes as the most reliable and consistent. We strongly recommend opening an account with these poker sites and playing poker there. The poker games on offer are excellent, the choice is extensive, the players are numerous and the rake is just fine. Poker-in.com lists the most important and best providers in comparison.

 updated: 30.11.2020
 –  of  of the best online poker sites compared
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