PokerStars is now live in Ontario, becoming the latest addition to the most populous Canadian province’s budding, newly regulated market. PokerStars Ontario joins the likes of BetMGM Poker Ontario and 888poker Ontario, which launched back in early April.
The arrival of PokerStars Ontario has been expected for some time. Now, the operator has finally acquired all necessary permissions from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) and iGaming Ontario (iGO). This makes the operator fully licensed and regulated, giving Ontario players access to another reliable online poker platform.
PokerStars Ontario and Existing Players
With PokerStars launching under the new license, existing Ontario online poker players will need to transition to the new platform. The process is pretty straightforward and consists of just a few steps:
- Log in to your PokerStars account, as usual
- A message will appear notifying you about the switch to pokerstars.ca
- After reading the message, click the button to start the migration process
- A new message will appear, notifying you the migration was successful
- Use the link to move straight to the new client or log out from your account
- The next time you log in, you will log into the new PokerStars Ontario client
- As the final step, you will need to read and confirm the Terms and Conditions
Your entire balance will be transferred to the new account and converted to Canadian dollars. All T$, Stars Coins, and any unused tournament tickets will also be transferred during the migration process, so Ontario players do not have to worry about losing any value.
Account migration is mandatory for all Ontario players. To start the process, you should ensure you do not have any pending withdrawals, are not registered in any tournaments, and have no active cash game or casino sessions, as these will prevent you from completing the migration.
What to Expect from PokerStars Ontario
Ontario players will still enjoy the PokerStars’ world-class software and mobile apps, so there are no changes there. There are, however, some changes to the game selection and the tournament schedule.
The operator will celebrate the launch in the new market with the special Ontario Platinum Series, an MTT series that will take place July 10 – 18, featuring CAD $1,000,000 in guaranteed prizes. PokerStars has already announced plans for the Ontario Championship of Online Poker (ONCOOP), which should have a guaranteed prize pool of CAD $2 million.
Players in the province can also look forward to a new flagship event, the New Sunday Majors, which will take place every Sunday and guarantee CAD $100,000.
When it comes to cash games, PokerStars has launched with a somewhat more limited range of options than what is available on the international platform. Available game variations are Texas Hold 'em, PLO, and 6+ Hold 'em, in addition to the unique Tempest format. According to the operator, other games will be offered occasionally, but only in the tournament format.
The cash game stakes range from CAD $0.02/0.05 to CAD $50/100, so PokerStars did away with the lowest tables, but not much has changed otherwise. Zoom tables are available up to NL200, but it remains to be seen if there will be enough traffic for these to run regularly.
Ontario poker players will continue to enjoy the benefits of the PokerStars Stars Rewards loyalty program. As a part of the launch celebrations, the operator will dish out double points throughout July and August.