Bingo Rules

How To Play Bingo

This article is intended to teach individuals Bingo rules and how to play Bingo. However, in today’s modern technological age, this isn’t quite as simple as it used to be. The most differentiating factor is that of where you play Bingo – in a land-based Bingo Hall or over the Internet. Also, there are two major Bingo games played across the globe, each with their own distinct bingo rules of how to win.

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American Bingo – 75-Ball Bingo

In America, Bingo players enjoy 75-Ball Bingo. This traditional game uses 75 numbers, with groups of fifteen divided by the letters B, I, N, G and O. B is used for numbers 1-15, I for 16-30, N for 31-45, G for 46-60 and O for 61-75. The Bingo cards are squared – 5 numbered spaces across and 5 down – totaling 25 spaces. The center space is marked “FREE”, automatically being ‘daubed’ by all players. Each remaining space on the card is randomly filled with numbers, according to the B-I-N-G-O layout.

Example 75-Ball Bingo Card: (F=FREE)

Players must fill the required spaces to complete a pattern, as defined at the start of the game. For example, a X pattern would require daubing two diagonal lines, top-left to bottom-right and top-right to bottom-left, in order to win. Another example would be ‘Coverall’ Bingo, also known as ‘Blackout’, where the players are required to cover, or daub, all numbers on the Bingo card.

UK/European Bingo – 90-Ball Bingo

In Europe, players enjoy a different kind of Bingo. The basic premise of the game is the same, but the Bingo card and wining patterns are completely different. First of all, they are not called Bingo Cards, but rather Bingo Tickets. 90 numbers are utilized instead of 75. The card consists of three rows of numbers in 9 columns. There are 5 numbers in each row, with the remaining spaces left blank. That makes a total of 15 numbers places in 27 spaces. The first column can hold numbers between 1-9, second column 10-19, and so on, until the final column which can hold numbers 80-90. Example 90-Ball Bingo Ticket 90 Ball Bingo Card Winning Bingo tickets are awarded in 3 phases – 1-Line, 2-Lines and Full House. For every game, there are at least 3 winners. The player who gets one full line across daubed wins the first prize. The player to complete two full lines across wins the second prize. The first player to daub all numbers on their ticket wins the Full House prize.

How To Play Bingo

Now that we understand the difference between the types of game, let’s continue to the actual game play and bingo rules. Whether playing online or offline, players must first purchase bingo cards/tickets. If playing in an offline Bingo Hall, the player will be given a ‘Dauber’ to mark all called numbers.

Many offline Bingo halls offer electronic Bingo tables, where the player is not required to daub cards. A software program will do this automatically at the electronic tables. This requires renting of the table, which of course costs extra. Playing online Bingo, however, offers auto-daubing automatically. The feature can be disabled, but is generally preferred by most online Bingo players.

In 75-Ball American Bingo, a winning ‘pattern’ will be issued before the game begins. This is the pattern that must be ‘daubed’ in order to win the Bingo game. There are several major patterns most often used – X-pattern, 4-corners, Coverall, etc. – but playing Bingo online commonly offers more than 300 patterns in Bingo games. Once the Bingo game begins, a computerized ‘random number generator’ will decide the numbers called. This ensures absolute fairness and random selection of numbers in each and every Bingo game. Both offline and online Bingo halls utilize this modern technology. The numbers are displayed on a large board (or on the computer screen) as they are called. If personally daubing the numbers, each player must pay close attention to the numbers called, searching each card/ticket for that number and daubing accordingly. The more cards/tickets a player purchases, the more quickly they must find the numbers and daub them before the next number is called.

Players who prefer purchasing a large number of Bingo cards/tickets generally prefer to rent an electronic Bingo table with auto-daubing, or playing online with the auto-daub feature turned on.

Calling Bingo differs greatly in offline and online Bingo halls. Playing at a land-based Bingo hall requires the player to shout Bingo loudly over the crowd. A quiet, reserved person who says “Bingo!” too softly may not be heard, costing them the win.

In an online Bingo room, players have the option of “automatically” calling bingo – meaning the software halts the game, announcing that the player has won – or shouting out Bingo in the chat room. This option can be toggled on/off, but automatic is generally preferred. When all winners for the Bingo game are declared, the Bingo game ends and players prepare for the next game. Prizes are awarded accordingly. Online bingo automatically deposits winnings into the player’s account, where offline Bingo Halls usually provide a voucher to be redeemed at the counter before leaving.