Getting the right deal – Used


These range from shiny showrooms full of smartly-dressed salesmen to scary back-street sheds manned by decidedly shady-looking characters.

Used car dealers are the most expensive way of buying a car, simply because they have to make a profit. Franchise car dealers have valuable local reputations to protect, and often offer guarantees on their secondhand cars.

Independent garages

Independent garages generally have a large range of used vehicles for sale, and the spread of prices, ages, conditions and styles is likely to be wider than at a dealership. The majority have a reputation to protect and won’t buy a car to sell unless they think it’s worth it.

Dealers belonging to the Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMIF) should comply with the code of practice drawn up in consultation with the Office of Fair Trading. You can check the RMIF garages in your area by visiting the website at

Car supermarkets

Increasingly popular places to buy used cars are car supermarkets. These are giant, independent regional warehouses that buy in bulk from car fleets. Because of their huge turnover they sell at prices that can be £1,000 less than those of a franchised dealer. They also stock up to a thousand used cars at a time, so there’s plenty of choice.

Small independents

Supermarkets have the best prices, and dealers the best security, but small independent garages should not be forgotten. They are not all dodgy, under-the-arches operations, and are likely to be convenient, friendly and local. If they specialise in a particular make of car, so much the better. If they only sell, for example, Alfa Romeos, they are more likely to have good examples.


Auctions provide the cheapest way of buying a used car, but also the most risky. They are where the motor trade purchases most of its second-hand cars, so buying at auction can cut out the middleman. Around 90 per cent of the sales are trade, so you may feel a little daunted going along as a private purchaser, but you can save at least £1,000 on forecourt prices.

If you buy one, you have an hour to check it over with the option of pulling out of the deal. You will not be able to go away to think about it, and there’s little legal protection as the auctioneer can’t be held responsible for defects. Don’t even try buying at auction unless you know something about cars.

Private sales

Take someone along, even if you know what you’re doing, as potential buyers have turned up only to be robbed. Go to the seller’s house, watch them come out of the front door and then check the address on the registration document. Don’t accept excuses as to why the deal has to be done away from the seller’s house: a seller trying to deal in a petrol station or supermarket car park should set off a 100 decibel alarm in your head.

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Getting the right deal – New

Where to Buy

The greatest peace of mind when buying a new car comes at a franchised dealership garage that is contracted to one manufacturer. Even if you buy your vehicle from another source the chances are that your car will be serviced and maintained here. These centres have the experience of the brand and more sway with the manufacturer they represent.

Car supermarkets offer new cars from any brand where there are deals to be had – hence lots of Fords and not many BMW’s. These places are the antithesis of the franchised car dealerships – no flash showrooms, no test drives and an attitude of “Pile it high, sell it cheap”. Some of these cars have come from UK manufacturers and importers trying to offload surplus stock, but others will have come in as ‘parallel’ imports from Europe, which the supermarkets have brought over themselves. It is worth checking which type you are looking at: official UK cars will be worth more at resale time and may carry better warranties.

When the Internet first appeared, there was much talk of virtual sellers replacing “bricks and mortar” dealerships, but that hasn’t really happened. The Internet has become the main place to research cars (after all, you are doing just that), but Internet-only car sellers are still a tiny proportion of the total market. A few years ago, there was a brisk trade in Internet entrepreneurs offering ‘parallel’ imports. However, the recent strength of the Euro has made British prices look like good value, so only the biggest operators, like the supermarkets mentioned above, remain in business.

If you are looking at a parallel import, you need to watch out for:

  • Delivery times: Some importers entice customers with attractive prices, but how long will you have to wait for the car? If they are quoting months and months, be very careful – prices have been known to creep up while you wait and delivery times can stretch almost to infinity. Nowadays many importers sell from stock, meaning you don’t have to wait for them to source a car – a much more secure way of doing business.
  • Specifications: A Danish specification Ford may not be the same as a British one – generally speaking, specifications in Britain are higher than elsewhere. Get it in writing that the car will be to British specification and define what that specification is. Get a UK brochure and compare the list of equipment. It’s no fun taking delivery of your new car and finding steel wheels instead of the alloys you expected. Even if you don’t mind, the next buyer will. Also watch out for warranties. As described above, the standard manufacturer warranty is pan-European but that may only be for 12 months in other countries, whereas the UK-sourced model may come with an extended 36 month warranty as standard.

If you are sourcing a car from outside the EU, be extra-careful. This usually means a model from Japan and then you are pretty much on your own – a Japanese warranty is usually worthless in the UK. The car may have a completely different specification and may not even have rust-proofing underseal (that being unnecessary for the Japanese market). You will have to rely totally on the honesty of the company selling the car. A privately imported car from Japan will almost certainly be marked down in value when it comes to resale time.

Another option is pre-registered cars. These are new cars that dealers have bought and registered in order to qualify for discounts from the manufacturers. They then sell them on to customers at discounted prices. As depreciation is steepest when the car is first registered, this can be a great way to save money. It is not unknown for a model with 5 miles on the clock to be sold by a dealer at 30% off list price.

Getting the best price

How much should you negotiate? Sellers’ desperation varies hugely between car dealers. A fortunate few make customers wait months for sought-after vehicles, and are unlikely to budge on the asking price. However, it’s always worth asking for a discount and trying other dealers to see if you can get a better deal.

How much discount

As a general rule, the greater the demand for a car the less the discount. There may even be a waiting list for some models, like the Mini Convertible, in which case dealers are unlikely ever to reduce the price. At the other extreme, just turning up at a Fiat dealer has been known to generate discounts of 15% for particularly unpopular models.

Where models are about to be replaced with newer versions you can expect substantial discounts, although you may find that the car’s resale value has plummeted accordingly when you come to resell.

If your budget is tight, it may be worth looking around for special short-term promotional deals, such as 0 per cent finance, guaranteed trade-in values and free insurance. Most of these deals are simply another form of discount on the list price.

Taking the test drive

It seems obvious, but always test drive a car before you buy it. Some people get carried away in the showroom and open their wallet before they even sit in a car on the road. If you’re more than six foot tall, check you fit in a convertible with the hood up – will your golf equipment or family shopping fit in the boot of a supermini? Also make sure you get a proper test drive – not five minutes around the block with a 19 year-old salesman rabbitting on from the passenger seat. When you buy a £50 item of clothing, you probably spend a good few minutes trying it on – when you are spending thousands you owe it to yourself to test drive the car properly on a variety of roads.

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Choosing the right car

Choosing the right bodystyle

Choosing a body shape is a question of both practicality and style. There are seven options: saloon, hatchback, estate, MPV (or multi-purpose vehicle), coupe, cabrio or off-roader, also known as SUV (or Sports Utility Vehicle)

  • Saloons have a separate boot, which means that loads are hidden from view. On smaller cars (up to Golf/Focus size), saloons are out of fashion and may be worth less than a hatchback when you come to resell them.
  • Hatchbacks are characterised by a tailgate that lifts up from the bumper and includes the rear window. On smaller cars, they are now the rule rather than the exception, but on executive cars they have no appeal at all.
  • Estates offer a larger load space by extending the roof to the rear of the car. Originally the most practical mainstream design, estates are now quite fashionable and are often designed to look a bit sporting (e.g. Alfa 156 Sportwagon), which means they might not have as much room as you expect.
  • MPVs are a completely different category. There are now three different types of MPV: full size models like the Ford Galaxy, small MPVs like the Renault Scenic, and utility MPVs or “vans with windows” like the Citroen Berlingo. The number of seats varies from five to seven (or occasionally eight) depending on the model.
  • Off roaders started life as genuine farm vehicles like the original Land Rover or Jeep. Now usually designed more for tarmac, they look butch but are far easier to drive. The big news in this sector is “crossover” vehicles like the Volvo XC90 which is part off roader, part MPV and part estate.
  • Coupes have always had their place in the market, but recently have been losing out to the growing popularity of convertibles.
  • Convertibles are a big success story at present, especially as many are becoming available with folding metal roofs that turn them into coupes as well (e.g. Peugeot 206 Coupe Cabrio).

    Choosing the right fuel

    The type of engine you choose will greatly affect the character and performance of your vehicle. Alternative fuels such as gas and electricity are just starting to catch the public imagination – especially in London where they are not subject to the Congestion Charge.

    At present, the main choice is still between diesel and petrol, with diesel driving just over a quarter of all new cars sold today. Diesel sales have soared in the last three years for two reasons. Firstly, the Government made changes to the taxation of company cars which benefit cars with low carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Diesels always score well for CO2, although most diesels have to pay a small excess due to their higher emissions of other pollutants (mostly small particulates). Secondly, there has been a revolution in diesel technology. In recent years, “common rail” diesels have been developed which are far more powerful (and more economical) than older designs. Common rail works by injecting all the fuel from a single pipe, or rail at immense pressures – over 10,000 pounds per square inch, the idea being that the higher the pressure, the greater the engine’s efficiency. If you are considering a diesel, make sure that it is common rail – typical abbreviations are HDI, CRD, TDCI or PD (PD being VW’s equivalent to common rail which works slightly differently, but gives the same result). The last of the non-common rail diesels are still being made and should be avoided – they are usually the cheapest diesels in the range, such as the 1.9 SDI fitted to some VW and Skoda models.

    The latest diesels are always more economical than the equivalent petrol (typically 30% better), but they may be more expensive to buy and diesel is no cheaper than petrol. More surprisingly, diesels are now often nicer to drive than petrols – they have more power between 30 mph and 70 mph, which is where you need it most. They are also quieter on the motorway as they are lower revving (i.e. the engine is running more slowly for a given road speed). However, diesels are still noisier when they are cold, so a 6 a.m. start in winter can have you worrying about waking the neighbours. Check our road tests for more information on particular models.

    Getting the right safety equipment

    ABS, or anti-lock braking system, is a sophisticated system that stops your brakes locking up if you have to brake sharply, preventing skidding and loss of control – it even allows you to swerve to avoid an object during an emergency stop.

    Seat belts
    All new cars have seat belts in the front and rear that comply with British safety standards. Some cars now have a “three point” belt in the back for the middle passenger (like the ones in the front), rather than the old fashioned lap-only belt. If you regularly carry three in the back, this is a major consideration: a lap-only belt, although far better than nothing, can cause serious stomach injuries as the whole force of the impact will be taken through the stomach. The only extra feature you may want to ask about is the seat belt pre-tensioning system – it pulls the belt tight in the event of an impact, clamping you to the seat faster than a standard belt’s fast-pull locking system.

    Airbags are inflatable cushions that expand in a fraction of a second in the event of a collision. Drivers’ airbags prevent the driver hitting the steering wheel, a major cause of injuries. Passenger air bags prevent the front passenger hitting the dashboard, although a correctly worn seat belt should do this anyway. Side air bags provide some protection against the intrusion of body panels in a side impact. Nearly all cars now have a driver’s airbag fitted as standard, with passenger and/or side impact air bags as optional extras, often costing up to £500. More upmarket models are now offering head curtain airbags that fire out of either the headlining or side pillar – these dramatically reduce the likelihood of injury.

    Headrests play a major role in safety, preventing whiplash injuries as the head is thrown backwards during an impact. Look for cars with headrests fitted to both the front and back seats. If they are adjustable make sure they are positioned correctly. Badly positioned headrests can be as bad as none at all. As a rough guide, the headrest should be in line with the back of the head, not in line with the neck. In the latter case, the head could just pivot around the headrest, causing injury.

    Child seats
    Child seats, particularly those that are rear facing (used until a child is at least one-year-old), should not be used in a seat equipped with an airbag. However, many cars now have the facility to turn off a passenger seat airbag using a special keyhole – check before fitting though. The latest child safety seats are fitted using the ISOFIX system. These are child seats designed for a particular make of car and are easier to install and remove.

    Choosing security equipment

    Manufacturers’ standard security devices are often not effective enough to protect your car. Studies of new cars often reveal that they fail to meet the Home Office’s security guidelines, which suggests that a car’s locking system should keep a thief at bay for at least two minutes. The most important security features are locks, alarms and immobilisers.

    Central locking
    Central locking secures all car doors when the key is turned in just one lock. Some systems also close any windows that have been inadvertently left open. Remote central locking systems are operated as you approach the vehicle via a button on the key fob.

    Deadlocks are highly effective. They prevent doors being opened even if windows are smashed.

    Alarms are effective up to a point. Make sure the system does not work on what is known as a ‘voltage drop’. This type of alarm is triggered by a drop in car battery voltage, which happens when someone tries to start the engine. However, cold winter weather can also sap the battery’s power, causing the alarm to go off by itself.

    Immobilisers come in two forms:

    • Physical: bars that fit on to the steering wheel, locking it to the accelerator or gear lever
    • Electronic: devices that stop the engine from working if the car is broken into. All new cars now have some form of engine immobiliser.

    Tracking systems
    Depending on the cost of your car and the area you live in, you may wish to invest in a tracking system which, when activated, can pinpoint your car by satellite. It is estimated that 95 per cent of stolen vehicles using this system are recovered but the fitting and monthly costs can be high. The coverage is now being extended to mainland Europe too. Leading systems include Tracker and NavTrak and they can be astonishingly sophisticated. The latest NavTrak system has a discreet personal ID tag, so even if the thief steals the car with the keys (e.g. by breaking into your house), the control room is alerted.

    Minimising Depreciation

    The major cost of owning a car is the decline in its value over time. A few cars retain a large proportion of their value. Most, however, are worth less than half of their new cost after just three years. Check in a used car price guide to see what older versions of your prospective car sell for.

    The cars that hold their value best are those that are most sought after, like a Mini Cooper S or Ford StreetKa. A waiting list is a good sign of desirability. The more prestigious marques may appear more expensive initially but could actually be a cheaper proposition over the lifetime of the car.

    The financial balance between depreciation and cheap initial price can be difficult to work out. Make sure you spend some time considering the figures on paper before jumping to a decision that may cost you thousands when you come to resell the car.

    A great deal of the eventual depreciation comes down to the image of the car. Image is a complicated mix of aspiration, fashion and reputation that owes something to car advertisements and often little to the car itself. Broadly speaking, image comes from the manufacturer rather than the model. In the second hand market, an Alfa is never going to have the image of an Audi, regardless of how many magazines prefer an individual Alfa to the equivalent new Audi. The only exceptions are small, sporty models that develop an image of their own like the Peugeot 206 Coupe Cabrio or the Ford StreetKa mentioned above. However a mainstream Ford Focus 1.6 is always going to depreciate faster than a VW Golf. Most road testers agree that the Focus is a better car, but the Golf has years of careful VW image-building to fall back on.

    Another general rule of thumb is that the specification of a car should be appropriate to its class. Fitting satellite navigation or leather seats to a £10,000 hatchback may seem the last word in luxury to you, but a used car buyer would not expect to find them on such a car and probably won’t be prepared to pay extra for them in three years time. On the other hand, woe betide the person who wants to sell a used Jaguar XJ with cloth seats and a manual gearbox – in that sector, most buyers expect leather and automatic transmission as of right and will want a hefty discount if they are missing.

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Vauxhall Corsa

We loved the original Focus – one of the most radical mainstream cars in recent memory, and by far the coolest thing to happen to the dowdy mid-sized hatchback segment in the last 20 years. The Mark Two could not possibly have been an equally big leap forward, but it is a usefully better car, especially when it comes to interior trim. The rather limp styling of the Mark Two has been tightened up by the mid-term facelift that provides a sharper front end and a more defined profile.

The biggest step forward has been inside. While the Mark One felt like it had been trimmed by the same people responsible for McDonalds cartons, inside this one manages to radiate a real quality feel. Driving dynamics remain exemplary too, with ultra-accurate steering, a well-damped ride and properly sorted body control making the Focus a brilliant place to spend time on favourite “B” road. Motorway cruising is similarly accomplished, the Focus remaining calm and stable at speed, while the comfortable driving position helps to pass long stints at the wheel. All have decent passenger space, while saloon and estate variants have massive boots as well. If you are used to an early Mark Two Focus, you will be surprised at just how much quieter the facelifted car is: the 2.0 TDCI, in particular, is almost luxury-car smooth on a motorway.

Ford’s performance heritage is allowed to come to the fore through the ST and RS versions of the Focus. Both could justifiably be called hot hatches, but it is the RS that is the more extreme of the two. It gets to 62mph in just 5.9 seconds and is good for 163mph. The ST is no slouch, managing 62mph in 6.8 seconds, and offers the choice between three and five door versions. The RS is only available as a three door.

And the bad news? Well cheaper versions suffer from a sometimes stingy lack of kit – and the more basic engines are lacking in urge and refinement compared to rivals.

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Audi A3

This is only the third Audi A3, believe it or not. It’s probably because the second one seemed to go through ten facelifts that the model seems older.

Nonetheless, it’s part of the fabric of UK roads now. And what’s not to like? It’s got an Audi badge, a lovely, practical hatchback, and it’s cheaper than other Audis by virtue of having a smaller number on the tailgate…

…or at least that’s how it used to be. Times have changed. There are smaller, cheaper Audis now, also with practical hatchbacks. All of a sudden, the A3 seems like a ‘proper’ Audi, so more than ever it’ll have to look and act like one if it’s going to cut the mustard.

Thankfully, cut the mustard it does. And some. The A3 may look dull on screen here, but on the road it feels like a genuine luxury car, with a cabin that looks fresh, yet is simplicity itself and built from stuff that other manufacturers just don’t seem to have access to.

It doesn’t spring any surprises – it’ll just about fit four adults in comfort, the boot isn’t much bigger than before, and it still has nowhere near the personality of a BMW 1 Series – but the quality and technology it comes packaged with put clear water between it and most other family hatchbacks. Probably all of them, come to think of it.

It’s not all lyrical wax, though. Audi still can’t make its regular stuff exciting to drive, and still has a preference for making its cars feel firm in an attempt to endow them with feel/sportiness. That said, the A3 is comfier than it was, and the optional Audi Drive select does a good job of flitting the major variables (steering, throttle, suspension, gearing) between soft and hard – relaxation and engagement, in other words.

If the sense of quality is a major plus in the A3, then running costs don’t lag far behind. The version everyone will buy, the 141bhp 2.0-litre TDI, does near enough 70mpg and will cost next to nothing in tax, while feeling genuinely quick. Even the petrols are good on fuel (50mpg), and there’s a 1.6-litre TDI on the way that will be London C-Charge exempt.

So, while you might look at the A3 and wonder what all the fuss is about, it’s the sort of car that does what the Golf does but cranks it up two notches: it’s advanced, solid and classy without having to scream about it. You’ll pretend you don’t want one, but really, deep down, you do.

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Fiat to expand 500 family

Fiat has confimed that the 500 range will continue to expand, and will be continually updated to become an everlasting dynasty – a bit like the way the Porsche 911 has steadily evolved over more than 50 years.

Speaking to Autocar, the head of design at Fiat said, “We have an opportunity to present a family of cars that can work throughout a person’s life — from a young lady in her 20s through to a family with an active lifestyle and children,” said Ramaciotti. “The 500 has the power to enchant, and we believe we can keep the same cheekiness, cuteness and curviness of that car in many different forms.”

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Judi bola

Online Gaming Must Follow Fair Gaming Practices

Betting websites have to be dedicated to reasonable farming. If gamers view a video game is unfair, it will certainly have possibly tragic impacts, since a gambler could never go back to the video game once again. Betting is a gambling game, yet casino players ought to not feel they are unjustly benefited from online. Any type of online casino site ought to utilize encrypted information to make sure that others cannot access it.

Many net gambling establishments procedures numerous bucks in repayments a day, from repayments owed to gamblers to wagers owed by bettors. The procedure for repayments and also moseying in need to be  clear, consisting of alternatives free of cost video games and also benefits. Make certain that the wagering residence you regular has a selection of settlement selections, such as debit cards, cash transfers and also on the internet repayment systems.

How Casinos Keep Personal Data Secure

On the whole, the whole procedure should be protected and also secure. When betting on wagering internet sites, personal privacy is a crucial worry. A bettor’s identification must never ever be disclosed, and need to be taken into consideration secret Agen Judi Bola information that should never ever be shared, marketed or dispersed to 3rd parties. Fixing Problems A reputable online wagering procedure needs to do greater than  take your bests.

It needs to additionally be certified by a federal government firm and also have extremely clear guidelines on just how to call client service in Judi bola case there is an issue. An online internet conversation solution and a toll-free client service number are optimal for instance there is any kind of issues. If the Player’s 2 card hand is 5 or much less he obtains an extra card.

The Banker likewise obtains an added card if he has a 5 or much less, unless the Player has actually attracted a card, in which instance there are some exemptions Your two-card hand is meant for attempting to get an overall close to 9. Any type of cards from 2 to 9 are worth their number worth. There is no such point called “breaking hand” in blackjack, however in baccarat, there is. If one of the hands is all-natural as well as both hands stand after that the all-natural hand will certainly win. If there is no all-natural win on either of the complete after that an additional card will certainly be attracted to every hand to solve the victor.

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Tips on How to Play Online Roulette Tangkasnet Game

If you desire to play on-line live roulette video game, and also you desire to make it to the top, after that you have to comply with some suggestions that will certainly make you win very easy. Whenever you are attempting to find out some ideas relating to on the internet live roulette, after that there is possibility of bring your brand-new suggestions in the video game. If you are playing this video game for some time, after that you can recognize that you are finding out some concepts from time to time.

These steps will certainly do either make or damage the video game. If you are using some excellent methods, after that there is possibility of winning many video games. If you are obtaining some experience in this video game, it will certainly create some self-confidence to play in online casino clubs and also in some cases, you can wager for expensive video games. When you are, you need to manage the cash aspect thoroughly.

Putting online wagers

You require to take into consideration several points such as well notified regarding cash and also various other expenses while playing this video game. You can obtain this kind of self-confidence just after research study and also evaluate the suggestions that you judi taruhan bola can make use of in the video game. Below is one more factor that we require to take into consideration that, you need to not have over self-confidence while playing this video game. When you are playing in gambling enterprise, please do not pay for to reveal off.

It is additionally one of the tried and tested points that, your challenger will certainly constantly be attempting to capture you a face expression, which is providing an Tangkasnet idea regarding your video game. It is constantly a great suggestion for you to fill up on some totally free blackjack ideas prior to you obtain as well greatly right into the video game. Also if you recognize  how to play blackjack it is constantly a great suggestion to see if you can obtain any type of extra ideas that can make you much better at the video game.

Also the individuals that are seasoned blackjack gamers can constantly find out some even more regarding the video game. While playing blackjack can be a whole lot of enjoyable it is something that can be also extra enjoyable when you are great at the video game and recognize what you are doing. If you just look for complimentary on the internet blackjack you will certainly be dealt.

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Situs Poker

Experienced and also Newbie Players of Online Casino Sites

However what is important to be good at online poker, players must exercise and also play even more. As the saying goes, “Technique makes perfect”. The only way they can practice texas hold’em is to play frequently at the tables. As this costs a lot of cash and can be pricey, thus, novice gamers also casino poker pros have to keep a bankroll.

The Beginning Of The Globe Series Of Casino Poker

It would simply refer to picking the ideal texas hold’em themed present for the right individual, which’s it. It could truly be a bit of a challenge to figure out what present to provide to texas hold’em gamer when you don’t play the game yourself. It’s rather unusual how fast different poker themed product has expanded its array nowadays. It’s not simply limited to poker collections, texas holds ’em chips or online poker tables. You can never ever go wrong with precious jewelry as a gift to a female. Yes, there is texas hold’em themed lockets around.

Australian casino sites texas hold’em video game

Although these ideas are really good ones, it’s really good to know since casino poker presents can have a lot more personality and pizzaz. However greater than concentrating on the casino poker theme or giving “something texas holds ’em,” the individuality and choice of the recipient ought to constantly be considered when purchasing the gift. Nowadays, lots of large events like Globe Online poker Trip and also Globe Collection of Poker are aired on Televisions as well as a lot of us want to hit it Situs Poker bit and also take the big reward house from one of these honored competitions.

Betting Casino Poker Tips as well as Info

All you simply have to do is pick the best necklace for your poker player woman pal. Poker themed pendant layouts might be a poker chip, dice, or a necklace with the words “Done in.” The girl will always have a chip when she beings in a chair with a poker-chip crucial ring. Whether you go glazed with a sterling silver poker crucial ring or simply an enjoyable one with colorful texas holds ’em chip, it’s a lock. If you’re a poker gamer, this shouldn’t be an issue for you. You will no question have suggestions on where to go, what to get, just how much the Asia Poker Online present would certainly cost – that sort of thing.

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