90 Ball Bingo
It is fair to say that in the UK 90 ball bingo is the most popular bingo variation and is played in bingo halls and online every day. It also has a large following in Australia and New Zealand as well as in parts of Europe. You can also find the game in the US, although it is not as popular as the US version of bingo where numbers between 1-75 are called. If you’ve ever been interested in playing 90 ball bingo but don’t know where to start, or would just like to know a little more about the game have a read below as we run through all the bingo rules.
Playing 90 ball bingo is simple. All players have tickets and a pen or dauber to mark off their numbers. In the game of online bingo, the dauber is automatic, in a bingo hall the player will need to mark off their numbers themselves. A caller will read out a series of random numbers and the players will mark off these numbers on their tickets. Games are usually broken down into several sections with an opportunity to win on every line, two lines and full house (all three lines) available. The aim of the game is to mark off the line, two line or full house to win. Larger jackpot games may be played for a straight-through full house without wins for the line and two line games. While less options of winning may seem a negative thing, this is counteracted by a larger prize pot. Prize pots are divided by each win per game, so if there are three chances to win in a game the funds will be divided by three. In a straight-through full house the prize pot is not split,
If you’re lucky enough to win you need to call out to stop the game. This MUST be done before the next number is called to claim the win. If playing online the game will be stopped automatically for you and you will not have to call out. In a bingo hall, it is essential to use your loudest voice to make sure you’re heard.
The tickets, or cards as they are sometimes known consist of three horizontal rows and nine columns. Each of these rows will have five numbers and four blank spaces. Column 1 will have numbers between 1-9 in it, column 2 will have the numbers 10-19, column 3 will have numbers 20-29 and so on. In a bingo hall, you can purchase tickets in strips of up to six tickets per game. Six is the most commonly purchased amount per game although it is worth remembering that games in a bingo hall can be very quick, so purchasing less tickets may be better for brand new players to the game. Tickets are purchased in books which contain tickets for several games. When one game is completed players turn over the page of their book and begin a new game.
Online tickets work a little differently. When a player logs in to the bingo room they have the option to purchase individual tickets for each game. Online bingo halls usually give you the option of auto marking your numbers allowing you to purchase more tickets than you would usually have in a physical bingo hall. Some games have as many as 96 tickets per game, allowing you to adjust your ticket purchase to suit your budget. Ticket prices vary from 1p-£1.00 each.
As mentioned earlier, game jackpots are divided by the amount of winning opportunities per game. So, for example, if you played a line, two line and full house game it may be divided like so:
1 line £10
Two lines £15
Full House £25.
Games can also be played with a progressive jackpot. This can be seen both online and in bingo halls. Progressive jackpots as the name suggests are cash prizes that progress – rise – each time they are not won. There are usually conditions attached to winning a progressive jackpot such as calling on a number to win or calling in a set number of calls (for example calling a full house in under 40 numbers) to earn the cash. The progressive jackpot is won in addition to the usual full house prize but is usually much bigger. The biggest online progressive jackpot ever won in the UK was £5.9 million pounds! Not bad for a day’s work.
When playing online there are various strategies you can put in place to make gameplay more enjoyable or increase your potential chance to win. Here are some tips to get you started.
Play multiple games
It’s a common fact that the more tickets you buy the more chance you have to win, so the larger the ticket purchase the better odds you will have. Do bear in mind that this has an impact on your budget, so make sure you can afford to play with the amount of tickets you have purchased. Purchasing larger amounts of cheaper tickets may be more effective in the long run and help to stretch your budget.
Play in Inexpensive Games
Following on from this, it is worth remembering that even one ticket can win a progressive jackpot, so even if your tickets only cost 1p each you still have the same chance of winning as someone who has purchased a £1 ticket in another game. By purchasing cheaper tickets, you can play more games and enjoy a whole evening playing bingo for a relatively cost-effective pastime.
Watch out for Bonuses
Did somebody say bonuses? When signing up for a bingo site you will usually be offered a bingo bonus which will give you additional funds to build up your bank roll. There are usually terms and conditions attached to this bonus, so ensure that you read the small print carefully for play through requirements (how many times you must bet the bonus before you can withdraw it).
Online bingo is big business, so don’t be surprised to see many other bingo bonuses and promotions on a regular basis. Taking advantage of these will help stretch your budget and increase your time spent playing. Some bingo clubs also have promotional games with buy one get one free tickets or ones that offer an opt in to a larger jackpot game. If you take advantage of these you can usually increase your long-term odds of winning and get more bang for your buck.