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Bingo Terms & Glossary

Below you’ll find a quick reference guide to several bingo terms. The glossary is listed in alphabetical order.

Bingo Terms & Glossary

75 Ball Bingo
The traditional bingo game played in the United States and Canada. The bingo cards have numbers on a 5×5 grid and the numbers range from 1 through 75.

90 Ball Bingo
The traditional bingo game played in the United Kingdom. The bingo tickets have 15 numbers in nine columns and 3 rows. Each row has 5 numbers along with four blank spaces. The first column has the numbers 1 through 9, the second column 10 through 19, the third 20 through 29 and so on, up to the last row that has the numbers 80 through 90.

Admission Packet
The minimum number of cards which must be purchased when entering a bingo hall. The admission packet usually contains 3-6 cards for regular games, and occasionally a special game card. The packet contents vary from hall to hall.

After Game
The bingo game played after the regular session of play. Online bingo is different as it allows you to play an online bingo game anytime you please

Ball Gate
The metal flap at the top of the ball runway under which the ball needs to roll to enter the main playfield.

Ball Lifter
Used to raise the ball from the playfield area to the ball shooter tip.

Ball Runway
The sleeve on the right side onto which the ball shooter launches the ball before entering the playfield.

Ball Shooter
A spring loaded plunger used to launch the ball into the playfield.

A box section containing playing consoles and coin slots on both sides. A conveyor belt inside moves money from the coin slots to a cash box at one end of the barrier. Players face each other to play, across the barriers..

Basket Bingo
Bingo game where basket prizes are given.

A game in which players covered squares on numbered cards when corresponding numbers were called out. The aim is to cover a complete line. Beano predates bingo and is so-called because beans were originally used to cover the numbers called out.

Bingo Board
An electronic display board which lights up after every number is called.

Bingo Booklets
A number of different coloured bingo sheet cards bound together in a booklet, usually bound in the order in which they will be played.

Bingo Card
A person’s playing card which contains 25 numbered squares in a 5×5 grid. Five numbers are listed under each of the BINGO letters, while the center square is ‘free’. The card’s numbers must be covered up in a pre-determined pattern in order for the player to win the game.

Bingo Daubers / Markers
A bottle of ink with a foam tip used for marking the square on the bingo card.

The pattern which requires that all 25 squares be covered in order to win the game of bingo.

A forced-air device that mixes the bingo balls and dispenses them to the caller who announces the numbers and displays them on a bingo board. Used in offline bingo.

Bonanza Bingo
A progressive coverall jackpot version of the game usually played as the 13 th game in the session. At the beginning of the session, 45 numbers are drawn and they are marked on separate cards. The countdown normally begins at 48 numbers and goes up by one number per week until 52.

A series of tickets for bingo games.

Break Open
A multi-ply card made from paper with perforated tabs. The play area of the card is covered to conceal numbers, letters or symbols.

Buy In
Buying bingo playing cards.

Buzzword Bingo
Game played using buzzwords in place of numbers. Players mark words and phrases on their card as they are spoken. The first player to mark five phrases or words in a row calls “bingo”.

The person who calls the bingo numbers as they are drawn.

Cash-in Prize
The type of bingo where a cash payout is the prize – money is paid in and 50% of the stake is usually the cash prize.

Cash Ball
A progressive jackpot that pays off on the called number, drawn before the session begins.

Consolation Prize
The prizes offered on special games where there is no winner or set number of calls.

Bingo Daubers
A bottle of ink with a foam tip used for marking the square on the bingo card.

Early Bird Game
A game which starts before the regularly scheduled games.

Free Space
The square in the middle of the bingo card which is already covered up.

The individual bingo sheet containing 24 numbers and a free space in the middle.

Flimsy or Flimsies
Bingo cards printed on thin sheets of paper.

Four Corners
Cover the four corner numbers of the bingo card in order to win.

Full House
A winning pattern in which a player has marked off all the numbers on their ticket.

Game Board
An electronic display board situated next to the bingo board which shows which pattern is currently being played out in order to win the game.

Game Room
The online bingo room is sometimes divided into smaller game rooms.

An electronic dauber system used by players holding multiple cards in one game

Hard Ball
The first number drawn at the start of the bingo session.

Hard Card
A bingo card made from hardboard usually with shutters in order to cover the numbers called.

Hardway Bingo
Bingo pattern in a straight line, without using the free space.

A gambling property or establishment, such as a casino or bingo hall. Also the phrase called in some games of bingo when a winning pattern is achieved.

Inlaid Card
A pre-printed 4×4 number card usually set into a table.

Inside Square
A bingo pattern in 75-number bingo in which players must cover all the numbers in the I, N and G columns surrounding the free space, in order to win.

The largest cash prize, usually awarded for achieving a difficult pattern.

Late Night Bingo
A late night bingo session, usually beginning after 22.00.

Lucky Jar
A pot of money which is a special prize handed if a person bingos on the lucky number. The lucky number is the first number called at the beginning of the session.

Main Stage Bingo
The main event of a session of bingo games.

Minimum Buy In
The minimum amount which must be spent in order to be eligible for a prize.

Money Ball
A number drawn before the game begins which doubles a player’s prize if bingo is hit on that number.

Moonlight Bingo
Like late night bingo, a playing session beginning after 22.00.

Multiple Winners
If more than one player wins a bingo game at the same time, the cash prize is divided between them.

Bingo displays grouped together in a mushroom-like shape, with a narrow tubular base, and a wider top. 6-8 players can sit around the mushroom to play.

A humorous way of calling the numbers.

Nine Pack
9 numbers in a block on one bingo card.

A player is ‘on’ when one or more of their cards are only one number away from a bingo.

On the Way
A game played on the way to a blackout game. A pattern is chosen before reaching the blackout pattern and the caller continues with the same numbers after the first part is won, to reach the blackout pattern.

Short for participation bingo which is slot or cash bingo with a cash prize. Inlaid or shutter cards are generally used for parti bingo.

The shape or pattern which needs to be covered in order to win a game of bingo.

The amount of money paid out by the bingo hall in percentages. Average payout in bingo halls is 75%.

Pod Top
The unit on top of the barrier that contains all the mechanisms used in the game, such as coin mechanisms, credit displays and claim buttons.

Postage Stamp Pattern
A pattern that covers four numbers in a postage stamp formation (a 2 x 2 grid) in any of the four corners on a bingo card.

Prize Bingo
Bingo is played for prizes and not for money – usually dependent on the laws of the country.

Progressive Jackpot
A jackpot which increases in size until it is won.

A bingo game in which the numbers are called as quickly as possible and the player’s card must be fully covered to win.

Rainbow Pack
A paper pack which allows players to play for a few different prize values at once.

Rebound Rubber
A rubber disk located at the top left of the playfield, allowing the ball to bounce off if shot hard enough.

Replay Counter
A mechanical device placed inside a machine which keeps count of how many credits a player has achieved in different wins.

A random number generator which is a machine used to select the numbers in a game of bingo (and other gambling games) on a totally random basis.

A series of bingo games made up of regular and special games. Usually lasting 2.5 – 3.5 hours, played in the morning or evening.

Single Line Across
A pattern in which a player has marked off all the numbers on one row of their card.

Six Pack
Six numbers in a block on a card.

A bingo game played on a different set of cards (usually flimsy) than those bought at the admission.

Speed Bingo
A variation whereby the numbers are called very quickly and only a small section of the board needs to be covered in order to bingo.

Split Pot
A game where the winner shares the sales of the game with the bingo hall.

Table Board Bingo
A lottery scheme in which players purchase a table board card. To win, players must complete specified arrangements or patterns of numbers on the Table Board from numbers selected at random.

An electronic dauber system allowing multiple play.

Texas Blackout
A variation of bingo where the first number calls determines whether all the odds of evens on a card are covered. Numbers are then called normally and the game is played until a blackout is won.

Sometimes also called flimsies – bingo cards printed on thin sheets of paper.

Two Lines Across
A pattern in which a player has marked off all the numbers on two rows of their bingo card.

The number of bingo sheets used to make up a book.

The eligibility needed in order to win extra jackpot amounts.

Warm Up
A bingo game which is played before the start of the regular session.

Wild Number
A wild number is usually played on a double bingo that leads into a triple bingo. The first number drawn usually determines the wild number.

Wrap Up
The last game of the bingo session.

Posted by Bingo Journey