Bingo Etiquette: Rules to Follow While Playing

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Bingo, a game enjoyed by people of all ages, is renowned for its entertainment value and reliance on luck. Moreover, players can win exciting prizes while playing, contributing to the game’s allure. Bingo halls possess a unique ambiance that attracts players and immerses them in a cheerful and carefree atmosphere.

As bingo’s popularity increased since its inception in the 18th century, a set of etiquette rules developed over time. While some of these rules are explicitly stated, others are widely known among players and held in high regard. New players must learn and follow these etiquettes, ensuring they and their fellow players have an enjoyable time.

Although the rules and etiquette may differ slightly from one hall to another, this article will highlight the ones common to all bingo halls.

Be Courteous and Polite

The most important etiquette in bingo games that all players must follow is being polite and respectful toward others. One of the unwritten politeness rules is that bingo seating is not first-come, first-served. Most regular players at bingo halls have their preferred seats, which they consider lucky.

If it is a player’s first time in a bingo hall, someone may ask them to move, and the new player should respect that and not be alarmed by it. Showing courtesy is very important to keep players’ spirits up. Respecting the wishes of regular players is also essential because the new player may one day become a regular and find themselves asking someone to move from their “lucky” seat. Therefore, treat others the way you would like to be treated.

Socialize but Don’t Be Too Loud

Bingo is a game that fosters social interaction, and bingo halls provide an opportunity for meeting new people; however, excessive noise is discouraged. Players need to understand that maintaining a quiet atmosphere during the game is fundamental.

This does not imply that individuals cannot socialize or have fun; socializing is a significant aspect of bingo games. Nevertheless, players should be considerate of others and avoid making unnecessary noise.


Some people like to focus during the game and consider it a time for calming themselves. Frequent questioning and the sounds some people make when they’re frustrated can be annoying to others. Players should be quick and quiet with their questions and reactions during the game to avoid disturbing others.

Pay Attention to the Caller 

Respecting the bingo caller is essential. The caller is not responsible for a player’s bad day, bad luck, or losing streak. The caller cannot influence the numbers they draw; it is all based on pure luck and coincidence.

Players should pay attention to the caller to avoid missing any numbers called out. Sometimes callers may speak too fast, or their voices may not be audible to all players; players can politely request the caller to slow down or speak louder in such cases. Most bingo halls have big electronic boards that display the numbers called, which can also help greatly.

Double-Check Your Cards

Players must double-check their cards before shouting “BINGO” if they think they have a winning card. They should stay attentive to their cards, never miss a call, know precisely the number they require to win, and only claim a win when they genuinely win.

No one appreciates players who interrupt the game without a real win. Furthermore, making false claims can distract callers from actual winners and disrupt the game’s flow.

Learn the Bingo Lingo

To ensure uninterrupted gameplay and an enjoyable experience for players, it is important to learn the bingo lingo. Knowing the unique terms of the game and the words and phrases commonly used by regular players and callers can help players better understand the game and have more fun while playing. It can also help new players quickly comprehend the callers and keep up with the game’s pace.

Here are some examples of bingo lingo:

  • One little duck: Refers to the number 2, as the shape of the number resembles a duck.
  • Two fat ladies: Refers to the number 88, as the shape of the number looks like two overweight women.
  • Legs eleven: Refers to the number 11, as the numbers 1 and 1 look like a pair of legs.
  • Clickety click: Refers to the number 66, as the two numbers side by side resembles a train’s sound.
  • Kelly’s eye: Refers to the number 1, as it was believed to be a reference to the legendary Australian outlaw Ned Kelly, who had only one eye.

Have Fun!

In addition to having fun, it’s crucial to keep in mind that bingo is no more than a game of chance. Winning is never guaranteed, so keeping a positive attitude and enjoying the experience regardless of the outcome is essential. Avoid overthinking the game, respect the caller and other players, stay attentive to the game, and, most importantly, enjoy your time.

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