Know Your Bingo Games Before You Play

Everyone thinks that bingo games are so easy to play that even kids will manage. But think twice. Nowadays some of the best bingo games are variants which are quite different from the classic, well-known games. We have researched and gathered all the information about different variations, best games and free games online to make it easier for you.

What gaming features does an online bingo room offer?Below you will find information on what options there are in an online bingo room, how to set your settings and what are the rules of the different variants like tickets, lines, jackpots and requirements and what the newest variants are and options.

If you do not feel like reading, and you just want to browse and play, check what Gala has to offer. This is a site where you will find a lot of different games both traditional and branded rooms.

What are the options to play online games?

  1. Mecca
  2. Wink
  3. 888ladies

More and more bingo sites are emerging, and you can think that bingo is all the same everywhere. However, there are features that differentiate some sites from others.

Some of the most important features are the variety of games including free games, promotions, game variations and welcome bonuses.

Undoubtedly, playing bingo online is very convenient, but the huge amount of games online makes it confusing and sometimes tricky.

That is why we made an effort to pick only the best bingo games and operators with a good selection of games as well as some free options.

A great example is Wink, where you will find all the traditional games and some new bingo variations. On top of that, new players get a seven day free gaming period.

Options in the Bingo room

In a traditional bingo room like the 90-ball bingo rooms at Gala, you can manage and adjust your preferences and change the settings to personalise the room according to your requirements. Usually, these settings can be found in the menu under ‘My Account’ and then ‘Settings’ or ‘Preferences.’ There is where you can adjust all the settings.

Depending on the bingo site here you can change the shape, colour and style of the dauber. You can also adjust the sound, where you can choose the voice of the caller, the way the numbers are called, etc. In many bingo game rooms, you can also adjust the chat window, the font size, the quality of the graphics and the screen layout.

If you play Gala, you can use the desktop shortcut installer, which is quite convenient. It is located under the category ‘Preferences.’ It is important to note that you do not need to download any software, but just the icon on the desktop that will give you quick access to the site.

Buying Bingo Cards

Buy Bingo Cards by making the right selection of tickets! Yes, it is as easy as selecting the number of tickets and clicking the ‘buy’ button. However, there is more to buying tickets you should know. We would like to tell you a bit more about the pre-buy, bulk-buy and auto buy options. The first two, pre-buy and bulk buy lets you buy tickets for the games in advance.

When you see the games and ticket price and click buy, you will get cards for the respective game. On most sites, you can buy tickets a week in advance.

Another great option is the auto buy. If you choose it, it will purchase the cards for you when each game starts. It is easy to turn it on and off whenever you like. You can also pre-set the number of tickets as well as the maximum price per card. The system will not purchase tickets – if you already have them or if you run out of money.

Auto Daub Function

There are sites where you can either daub your ticket yourself or opt for the auto-daub. Some people think this distracts you from the numbers that are being called out. For others, it is what breaks the silence in the rooms because it gives you the opportunity to chat with others and play side games. We would agree with both opinions, but in fact, we could not find operators who let you turn the auto-daub off. Even if the option is available in the help section, the feature may not work.

So, for now, you can choose the dauber and the colour and also use the time to chat with other players in the room.

Progress of the Game

The news regarding bingo keep changing, so don’t lose track of the progress. In order to see how many numbers you need to be doubted on your ticket to win a Full House, check the bottom right corner of your ticket. The colour of the card indicates whether you are 1, 2 or 3tg. Every prize which is already won will be marked with the number of the ball and the nickname of the winner so that you know what prizes are still available.

Traditional Bingo Games

Two of the best known and played bingo variations online are the 90- and 75-ball games. There are differences in the number of balls, but also in the selected numbers in a line or a pattern. Below we will give you more information about each of these traditional variants and the role of the caller in each game.

A Brief Video Message

Traditional 90-Ball Bingo

This is the oldest version of bingo gaming, and it is the best-known variant among bingo games. The first release is played with 27 squares, nine columns and three lines running horizontally. These lines contain five numbers and four empty spots. This game is managed by the caller, who is there even when you play online.

The numbers placed on the card are between 1 and 90; the round tombola contains 90 balls, then there is a random draw. After that, the caller announces the number on the drawn ball so that all players can check their cards. There is a way to arrange the numbers so that they are easy to find.

In some operators, there is still the traditional calling, where each number has a name. This may be confusing for newcomers, who will need to use some reference to be able to recognise the numbers because the etymology is not always evident. Bingo 90 offers three chances to win; it is viral and vastly preferred.

75 – Ball Bingo

When the game was introduced in North America it was somewhat altered with a new layout and new challenge for the players. As already mentioned not all squares in the 90 ball card contain numbers, so the 75 ball, took up a card where only the central square is free, it is called the 5×5 card. The letters BINGO are printed on top, and each letter is placed above a column. The caller announces the number and the presiding letter to make it easier for players to follow the numbers on their cards.

The great variety of existing winning combinations is the additional challenge presented by the game. The most preferred variant is where patterns are printed on each card, and players try to cover the numbers in the winning pattern. All letters and digits are used in combination with some fun shapes like hearts, arrows, crosses and some more interesting ones like an explosion and lightning.

When you play bingo online you have the great opportunity to move patterns, where whichever pattern the players fill in, it will be winning.

Rules and Features of the Traditional Games

Why traditional bingo games are still very famous?Although the traditional bingo games are quite popular, we would like to start with a quick reminder of the basic rules.

In 90-balls games, every ticket contains 15 numbers, or 3 lines and 9 columns with 5 numbers in each line and 4 empty boxes. There are three prizes you can win.

The other popular traditional game is the 75-ball bingo with 5×5 cards where each box beside the middle one has a number. The one in the middle either has a number or is marked with a star, so the total number is 24.

As already mentioned the letters B-I-N-G-O are printed on top of the list line and the caller announces a number and a corresponding letter for example B-2. The winning combinations are countless as you can daub lines, columns, patterns and a Full House. There was also a variation with 80 balls, which was played as an interval game, between the main sessions, but now it is available as a separate, regular room at sites powered by Mecca, Cozy or Gamesys.

Online Bingo Features

The two traditional games 90- and 75- ball have been around for so long that almost everyone has played or at least tried a few games in their life. The thing that makes these two games so popular is that everyone knows how to play them. But this can make them boring after a while.

However, if you play online there are several things you can do to avoid this: chat with other players during the game and play side games like mini games or chat games where the host asks questions and gives prizes for the first who gives a correct answer.

Innovative Variants

Games are popular and favourite to many people worldwide, and there is a growing need to spice up the traditional game, that is why there are many interesting and innovative variants coming up. One uses special patterns you can use; other involves playing with a deck of 52 cards and 2 Jokers, the third combines slots and bingo and it has become a huge hit.

  • 80- Ball Bingo

    This bingo game is a combination of two variants the 90- and 75- ball game. You play with more balls than the 75-ball variant, but still, the option to go for patterns to win the game is available. There are 4×4 cards with 16 squares, which contain numbers between 1 and 80 in the Bingo 80. The letters BINGO still appear on top of the card, but since the columns are less, they are not used in the same way as in the 75-ball version.

    The vertical columns are in different colours to make it easy to locate the called-out numbers. The caller announces the number with the colour of the column it is in.

  • Joker Jackpot
    A combination of cards and bingo which is considered one of the best bingo games. It is played with traditional 52 card deck and 2 jokers – a red one and a black one. Here you have a hand of 3×3 cards, instead of a ticket. Although it is played with cards and not balls, just as in ball games players need to find a match in their hands and decks. The two winning possibilities are the popular J-pattern and the Full Hand.
  • Video Bingo

    Video bingo combines the features of slots and bingo gaming! This is a combination of a slot and a bingo game, and it is growing in popularity, becoming one of the top bingo games online. It is a stand-alone game so that players can enjoy it anywhere, anytime. Players are independent, so there is no need for community or waiting for rooms to open.

    Players can play whenever they like and as many times they like. What they need to do is simply choose their cards, lay their bets and start the game.

Super Quick Games

There are fast-paced variations that you can play when you do not have the time, or you want to spice up your experience a bit. There are various names under which you will find the speed rooms, depending on the operator. At first, it might seem that each site has its versions, but that is not the case. The principle is the fewer the balls, the quicker the game. The 75 and 90-ball games just go faster; the numbers are called every few seconds and the pause between games is shorter. There are also variants with 30, 40 and 50 ball variants.

Games with Fewer Balls

The 30-ball bingo game is developed by Cozy Games and available on the sites they power – Little Miss, Bobs, and Landmark. The 30-ball bingo room has the same name in all of them – City Hall. The winner is the one who marks the 9 numbers in a 3×3 grid in the ticket. The 40-ball Rainbow Riches is a new game, developed by Virtue Fusion and found on Gala, Sky, Betfair and other sites from the network.

The tickets in this magical Irish-themed room are 2 four-leaf clovers. There are rainbows, pots of gold and leprechauns that are part of the atmosphere in the room. There are two prizes – for 1 daubed clover and a Full House, but there are also three progressive jackpots and a bonus when your wishing well is full of golden coins.

Next, comes the 50-ball bingo. This game is available on most sites from the Cozy network and Gala. The name of the room at Gala is Coconut Island, it is a great spot for relaxation online. The theme features coconut trees, desert beaches, and splashing waves; it is the perfect escape during the lunch break.

Games with a standard set of Balls

As already mentioned the 75 and 90 ball games are played with the regular rules, but much faster. The tickets for this game start from 1 penny and the prizes vary between 7-60 pounds. These games are available at William Hill and start every 3-4 minutes. You can also win the 1000 pound Cash Rocket jackpot.

Wink also has 75-ball Speed Bingo room under the Fun and Free tab on the site. It is opened in the mornings for about 3 hours. The win here is quite quick; you just need to daub 4 numbers.

TV-Show Themed Games

It is easily understandable why this category of games is the largest one. Some TV shows are already quite popular, so when a bingo room is announced the players are already familiar with the theme and want to see how the features of the show are incorporated in the game.

Were Gala successful after introducing the room of Coronation Street?When Gala opened their Coronation Street room, many expected only the theme song and the brick wall background, but there were videos, and actually Ken Morley called out the numbers, of course, it turned into a big hit.

Add nice progressive jackpots to the picture, and these rooms become irresistible for the fans of any show.

There is a wide variety of Tv shows turned into 90-ball games like, Britain’s Got Talent, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, The Price Is Right and Take Me Out. Most of these games are available on the Virtue Fusion Network except Take Me Out, which is developed by Gamesys.

Rare Variations

Many of the games in this section seem like borderline cases, not exactly bingo but something similar. Although not as popular as traditional bingo variations, these less common games also deserve your attention. You can play them just for fun or to spice things up, but they might become a favourite.

  • Video Bingo games

    The video bingo games are instant fun and combine the elements of bingo with the dynamic characteristics of instant win games. The numbers are shown, so you do not need to wait for them to be called out. The goal is to match the numbers on the ticket with the balls that are called out, just like in the regular games, but there is something extra that traditional rooms do not have – you can buy extra calls.

    All sites powered by Jumpman Gaming offer a selection of 15 video bingo games like Miami Beach, Candy Land, Las Vegas, Pharaoh, etc. Some of the sites in the network are Paddy, Elf, and Spice. Their games are not the best out there, but the video bingo section is worth a check.

    For a better overall experience and instant bingo with roughly, the same as video bingo goes to Dream, which is powered by Microgaming. In Electro Bingo, you can buy up to 10 extra balls; you will not find this feature in other instant games.

  • Bingo with cards

    Yes, bingo without balls exists, and it is a lot of fun. We already mentioned Joker Jackpot by Virtue Fusion, but there is more. Snap Bingo by Gamesys is also played with decks of cards and hands instead of balls and tickets. In Joker Jackpot, you need to match the dealt cards to the 9 cards you have purchased or get the J pattern.

    There is a fixed and progressive jackpot you can win with a Full Hand – 16 or 14 calls. In the Bingo Snap room, you get a bonus if your hand of 5 cards matches a poker hand. The goal is to match the dealt cards to your cards in sequential order. When that happens, you get the letters SNAP, and you win.

Free Bingo Games Online

Bingo is not a skill game, but it is still nice to be able to play for free first before you deposit your own money. And free gaming is a great option when your budget is tight, but you still want to play. Free games are not the way to winning big. There is a fund for the free games, and it is usually around a pound, and the amount of tickets you can get is limited.

Use no-deposit welcome bonuses to play free bingo games!The no-deposit welcome bonuses are another way to enjoy a few games on the house. However, not all sites have these. Below we will tell you about some that do. Landmark, powered by Cozy Games is one of the generous operators out there. Their bonus is in the form of free bingo bonus money – around 15 pounds, and with this amount, you can try each game you like.

There is a huge variety of bingo variants, so you will be able to play one game in each room when you get the bonus. Another site you can play for free at is Fancy, which is part of the Cassava network. Dragonfish bingo also offers free 75- and 90- ball games with many guaranteed and progressive jackpots.

The free games are one of the first things both beginners and experienced bingo players look at. The free games are one of the ways to win real money without spending any. This is our list of the top 3 operators that are most generous and feature free rooms for both newcomers and loyal players.

One of the best things is that the Newbie room is available for both PC and Mobile users. There are free games for the loyal players too. If you are an experienced player, but still want to enjoy a free game you can do it in the Free & Fun room, which is opened for 3 hours every day. The variation played here is again 90-ball bingo, and there are many cash prizes.

More Free Games – Another way to enjoy free gaming is to use the time in the Newbie rooms that are available for new players and offer free games within the first days after you have created an account. This is a way for the operators to compensate for the lack of a no-deposit bonus or offer. This is the case with most Virtue Fusion sites, which do not offer a free bonus, but they have great newbie rooms in their network. Here are the three best newbie rooms in the network.

Paddy power is one of the most generous, as a new player you can enjoy the free games for 10 days after wagering just 1 pound on bingo tickets. The prize pools reach 20 pounds. William Hill’s newbie room is called the Arrivals Lounge, and it is open for 8 days for everybody who spends 10 pounds on cards. The prize fund for the free games is 7 pounds, and there is a 10-pound game played every hour.

Last but not least there is the Gala Newbie Room, which is open for 7 days, and you do not need to wager anything to be admitted in it. It is open for 4 hours a day, and the prize can go up to 25 pounds per game.

Bingo Strategies

Do bingo strategies work in situations like real life?Bingo strategies are quite popular, but not all of them work in real life situations. There is a theory by Joseph Granville, a mathematician, which can be applied to the 75-ball games. According to the theory, the most important factor is what cards you choose before the game. If the final digits of the card numbers are wider, there is a higher chance to win.

Another popular theory is the so-called Tippet Theory. In a 75-ball game, the numbers which are being called out are closer to 1 and 75, while in the long games there are more numbers close to the average number, which is 38. Obviously, whether the game is long or short depends on what you play with – a pattern or not and how hard it is to daub it.

Both of these theories are well-grounded but unfortunately are almost useless in real life situations. You do not have much time before the game to find the right tickets, check patterns and think about strategies.

Here is some advice, which will help make your bingo games more fun. After all, bingo is not about the competition it is all about fun.

  • Using the auto-daub function even if you have the option to mark the numbers yourself is going to take away stress. This is especially valid for new players.
  • Use the chat rooms and share your progress. Telling the others what numbers you need to get a Full House is a lot of fun.
  • If you think the game is worth it, buy as many tickets as you can afford. And how to know if it is worth it? By comparing the money, you will spend if you max out to the prize fund and also check how many players have bought in. This may increase your winning odds dramatically.
  • If you decide to daub manually, and you miss a number do not stress out. If you have the winning numbers, you will still win, because there is software used online that calls the bingo.
  • If the jackpot slips away, do not whine in the chat and be a spoilsport. Everybody wants to win, and the winners are not to blame.
  • Do not play more to make up for a loss. Take a break and come back when you are ready to have some fun, it should not be a payback.

Famous Bingo Calls

Bingo calls may seem like something from the past when callers used tombolas and players daubers, so why use them? Online bingo sites have introduced an auto-daub function so that there is no way to miss a number or mistake it for another one.

How can bingo calls bring charm to the game-play?However, we think that the bingo calls bring some vintage charm to the game. Some of the nicknames of the numbers are strange, but others are quite funny. Sometimes the nicknames are based on pure resemblance for example 22 is “Two little ducks”, while others are based on rhyming like 25- “Duck and Dive”.

Some numbers have up to 8 names. Some of the names have interesting stories and meaning behind them. Below we have made a selection of the ones we liked best.

  • David’s Den – number 10
    This one changes every few years because it refers to the most popular address in the United Kingdom – 10 Downing Street. The number takes the name of every new Prime Minister. So, the ‘den’ has been Tony’s Den, Maggie’s Den, David’s den and so on.
  • Dancing Queen – number 17
    This one refers to the famous ABBA hit. This song is an evergreen no matter that it came out in 1976.
  • Snow White’s Number – number 50
    A number inspired by the first animated Snow White film produced by Disney. The number rhymes with the song dwarfs sing when they go digging gemstones in the mines.
  • Here Comes Herbie – number 53
    Another Disney inspired number. This one is dedicated to the VW Beetle Herbie that loved races. Its number was 53 and so is the name of the bingo ball.
  • The Beatle’s Number – number 64
    This number is taken from the lyrics of an iconic Beatles song written by Sir Paul McCartney in 1967.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about bingo on the web.

Is it possible to earn a living playing bingo?

You can win some money playing bingo, but it is not an income you can rely on. We have not heard of professional bingo players. Unlike poker, which is a sport, where skills and strategy are required. While bingo is a game of luck, which should be played for fun.

What is responsible gaming?

Do you know the meaning of responsible gaming?Just like with everything in life you have to know your limits. One or two games will not make you an addict. If there comes a moment in which you feel that the fun has stopped, and you are turning into a compulsive gambler, you must seek help.

Nowadays, there are many organisations that provide help like Gamcare, Gamble Anonymous, Gamble Aware. They provide support and advice, and you will see their logos on the bingo sites online. Depending on the operator you can also limit the amount of money you spend on a daily or weekly basis.

Another thing to consider is installing a parent control or filtering software if you are concerned that little kids or teenager at your house might also find the bingo games entertaining. There are many programs that keep your children safe on the net some of them are NetNanny, CyberSitter and Safer Internet.

Final Words

To sum it up, when you decide you want to play online, you have to consider some things. First of all, the type of game you prefer and if it is part of the game section of the site you have selected. Second, is there a welcome bonus or promo code you need to use to get it? And last but not least there are many free games online so that you can play for real money, without spending on tickets. We tried to select the best bingo games available online and to give answers to all these questions.

If you are just thinking of trying some games, our advice is to check the great variety of free bingo games before making a deposit. In this way, you will have a lot of fun and get a feel of the online bingo experience.

However, if you need more information, read more about where to play online in the detailed reviews of the operators we have selected for you. Make sure you follow our articles because we always try to keep you updated on the top bingo games available online.

Last modified: February 26th, 2021 by Sam Barlow