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Our guide for new bingo players will teach you everything yoy need to know in order to play bingo games and win your next big jackpot!

Bingo is a game of chance where randomly-selected numbers are drawn and players match those numbers to those appearing on 5×5 matrices which are printed or electronically represented and are known as “cards.” The first person to have a card where the drawn numbers form a specified pattern is the winner and calls out “Bingo!” to alert others to the win. Bingo is a game used for legalized gambling in some countries. Our online bingo halls selection will show you the best places to play at!

Bingo Cards
Canadian and American bingo cards are 5 × 5 grids of numbers only; dual daub, dual dab, or “double-action” cards have two numbers in each square. Each space in the grid contains a number, except for the centre square, which is considered filled. The highest number used is 75. The columns are headed with the letters of the word BINGO, and the letter is called with the number — for example, B-10, I-25, N-40, G-55, O-70. Numbers 1 to 15 are assigned to the B column, 16 to 30 to the I column, 31 to 45 to the N column, 46 to 60 to the G column, and 61 to 75 to the O column.

Each card has a unique serial number to permit quick verification by computer.


A typical bingo dauber, which is also used for housie ticketsCanadian and American games often have multiple bingos — for example, the players may first play for a single line, then after that is called continue playing for a full card, then for a consolation full card.

In Canadian and American bingo halls, players often play multiple cards for each game; thirty is not an unusual number. Because of the large numbers of cards played by each player, most Canadian and American bingo halls have the players sit at tables to which they often fasten their cards with adhesive tape. To mark cards faster the players usually use special markers called dabbers. At commercial halls, after calling the number the caller then displays the next number on a television monitor; bingo cannot be called until that number is called aloud, however. The numbers already called and the patterns being played are also displayed on electric signs.

In American primary schools, bingo is used to teach students. The numbers are replaced with letters, pictures, words or symbols that represent important concepts.

Bingo can be traced back to a game called Lotto, played in Italy in 1530. The bingo name comes from a corruption of the name Beano, the name of a form of bingo played in the United States in the 1920s. Beano was so called because beans were used to cover the numbers.

The business of bingo
In the US, the game is primarily staged by churches or charity organizations. Their legality and stakes vary by state regulation. In some states, bingo hallsare rented out to sponsoring organizations, and such halls often run games almost every day. Church-run games, however, are normally weekly affairs held on the church premises. These games are usually played for modest stakes, although the final game of a session is frequently a coverall game that offers a larger jackpots prizes for winning within a certain quantity of numbers called; a progressive jackpot may increase per session until it is won. This is of course different in an online bingo hall.

Commercial bingo games in the US are primarily offered by casinos (and then only in the state of Nevada), and by Native American bingo halls. In Nevada, bingo is usually offered only by casinos that cater to local gamblers, and not the famous tourist resorts. They will usually offer several two-hour sessions daily, with relatively modest stakes except for coverall jackpots. Station Casinos, a chain of locals-oriented casinos in Las Vegas, offers a special game each session that ties all of its properties together with a large progressive jackpots. Native American games are typically offered for only one or two sessions a day, and are often played for higher stakes than charity games in order to draw players from distant places. Some also offer a special progressive jackpot game that may tie together players from multiple bingo halls.

As well as bingo played “in house”, the larger commercial operators play some games linked by telephone across several, perhaps dozens, of their clubs. This increases the prize money, but greatly reduces the chance of winning due to the much greater number of players.
Caller slang (UK Housie)
Although these numbers are amusing and each has its own story, most professional bingo halls do not use them. If a caller were busy saying “two little ducks”, and the number 22 has not yet been said, it is therefore not deemed “called”. In an instance where a player may have missed his or her number, and a player is waiting for 22, both players would have valid argument that their number was “called”.