How to win at bingo
Maybe you’ve got the hang of playing bingo but have yet to see a return on your stakes? Perhaps your beginner’s luck has run out? Either way, you’re probably keen to work out the secret to winning that jackpot.
There is no secret for winning at bingo. While it’s a game of chance and your success is primarily based on luck, fortunately, there are a few ways to improve your odds – some more scientific than others!
Bingo tips and tricks
Click on the ‘play’ button on the site. This will take you to the lobby; here you’ll find the full range of bingo games available to play. It’ll probably tell you about the jackpot for each game and the price of tickets, as well as when the next round starts and how many players are in that particular game room. Most sites will have different types of games available too; 90-ball bingo is standard for the UK, but sites also offer 75-ball US bingo as well as variations like 30 ball speed bingo. Let’s stick with 90-ball bingo for now.
Make your own rules
Have a think about why you’re playing. Is bingo a fun hobby or are you looking to play for profit? The best way to win at bingo is to make sure you’re using your money wisely.
Set yourself a budget
Bingo doesn’t have to cost the earth. Work out what you can afford and stick to it. Just because you were one ball away from winning last time doesn’t mean you are more likely to win next time. Playing with the confidence you haven’t overspent means there’s everything to win! Buying tickets doesn’t need to eat into your profits. Make savings where you can by cashing in on bonuses. Either shop around for welcome bonuses or stick to a couple of sites and make the most of their loyalty bonuses.
Find your niche
Remember, different bingo sites are designed to appeal to different players. So whether you’re a regular player or just after a bit of occasional fun with your loose change choose the site that best reflects your interest. These will have best odds for you and chances are you’ll meet like-minded players too.
Get some experience
Like most things in life, the more you practise the better you get! Use the free games available to build your knowledge of the game and take advantage of the bonuses on offer. Talk to other players! The chat rooms are friendly places and people are usually only too keen to help out. Benefit from the wealth of experience here and compare notes with your fellow roomies.
Should I buy more tickets
If money is no object, or you only play one or two games at a time, you could consider buying a large quantity of tickets each game. This increases your odds of winning in that particular game; if you buy one card in one game you have one chance, if you buy two you double that chance. Plus, the auto daub feature means that, unlike in a bricks and mortar bingo hall, you don’t need to worry about keeping up!
However, it only takes one card to win. Buying more cards will only give you more chances of picking this card. Buying the maximum number of cards per game will increase your odds of winning in that game, but it is also more expensive. You might prefer to stick with buying fewer tickets for each game, but playing more games. Spread your playing across a variety of different games and systems and you’ll increase your chances of winning the major companies’ jackpots. And remember, in the world of online bingo, you can be in more than one bingo hall at one time. This is great, but don’t forget networked sites may share games and jackpots; the best bet is to make sure your choice of sites is split across the different networks.
The bottom line is the more you play, the more likely you are to win. How you do this is up to you.
Increase your chances
Every game of bingo will have different odds. These are virtually impossible to calculate, but there are two sure-fire ways to improve them, depending on whether you’re looking for more wins or more money:
- Play at off peak times with fewer players to win more often. You’re most likely to win when your opposition is least. These games are likely to have smaller jackpots though, so you’re unlikely to win big
- Choose the games with the biggest jackpots to increase your chances of winning a large amount. Bear in mind that these games will have more players so you’re less likely to win
Buy Tickets in Advance
When there's a game coming up that you particularly like, but unfortunately won't be around when it starts, there is a simple solution to make sure you can still take part! 'Pre-buy' is an important feature that allows players to purchase tickets in advance and ensure they won't miss out on anything! Most eligible games at online sites will have this option clearly displayed - take note, these are always scheduled games, many with lucrative prizes and large progressive jackpots!
Pre-purchasing tickets is easy, as long as you have enough funds in your account and the tickets are not sold out. Events are usually announced well in advance, and all you need to do is log in daily to stay up-to-date with the promotional and gameplay offering. Some bingo rooms have a special 'Pre-buy' tab where all games with this option activated are stored for a quick and efficient search.
One of the reasons why this convenient advantage may significantly boost your winning odds is being able to ensure a place in the game, without having to rush just before it starts. Having a ticket safely tucked away will prevent unforeseen circumstances form interfering with your gaming schedule. Furthermore, since all regular games start every two to three minutes, grabbing a ticket early is not possible or useful here, but it sure is an option when grand prizes are concerned! Jackpot games generate a lot of interest and come with the option to 'pre-buy' a coveted place and a chance to compete for massive rewards.
Play cheap and easy in an hour-long session where all games have a single, fixed price! That is what Session Bingo is all about - not a new genre or site, but simply a way to make the most of the funds you've set aside for bingo joys. Different gaming sites organize these sessions differently; most rooms offer a five-game hourly or half-hourly sessions several times a day in multiple blocks, but some like JackpotJoy go even further than that, introducing up to 16 individual titles, and mixing variants of games and cards.There are no late entries allowed, so you have to plan ahead to have your chance at prizes. This means you need to pre-purchase tickets, as they won't be available once games have already started.
If you’re mathematically minded, you might want to try working out the odds for yourself. Although bingo balls are generated by a computer-driven random selector, there are still patterns to be spotted. Let’s take a game of 90 ball bingo. At the first call there is a 1 in 90 chance of any number being called; at the second call the chance is 1 in 89, at the third it’s 1 in 88 and so on. Probability comes into play in a game of bingo as well as luck.
Tippett and Granville
The two key players in the world of mathematical bingo strategy were Leonard Tippett (1902-1985) and Joseph Granville (1923-2013). Tippett was a British statistician who studied random number sampling. Granville, a financial prediction expert, expanded on many of Tippett’s notions to build his own theories about how to win at bingo. He even published a book about it in 1977. Here’s a quick summary of their work!
Card selection is important. There are some cards that are more likely to win in certain games than others, because of the distribution of numbers and the frequency with which they occur. In random number selection, the following patterns tend to occur:
- There will be the same quantity of numbers ending in 1s, 2s, 3s, 4s etc
- There will be a balance between the amount of odd and even numbers that are called
- There will be a balance between high and low numbers picked
- In a game of 90-ball bingo, the more numbers called the more likely they are to be close to the median number of 45
Based on these findings, here are a few handy tips to remember:
- Choose numbers with different endings. Don’t go for a card with 21, 31, 41, 51 and 61 on because that’s unlikely to come up
- Pick a card with a good mix of odd and even numbers
- Make sure the numbers on your card are spread out between 1 and 90
- Choose the cards yourself and opt for a wide distribution of numbers
- If you’re playing a ‘long’ game pick numbers closest to 45. If it’s a ‘short’ game, pick numbers closest to both 1 and 90
Trust the reviews
If you’ve had a run of bad luck, it might start to feel like it’s fixed. The good news is that bingo sites operate under strict legislation to ensure fair play. Have a look through our bingo site reviews and read up about the different software and networks. If there’s even a sniff of anything dodgy happening you’ll see it here first!
Our job is to find the sites and games that give you the best chance of winning and tell you about them. We’re also constantly on the lookout for the best bonuses and discounts so you can get more for your money and increase your chances!
The most important thing to do is enjoy yourself. Bingo is first and foremost an entertaining, social game. Keep it as fun first and winning second and you’ll never lose!Back to top