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Bingo Odds

Bingo is a simple enough game, but like any other, it has its own unique odds. It is a game of chance like no other and despite the fact that no two bingo cards are exactly the same, two people can get a bingo simultaneously.

However, the odds are different for live bingo and online bingo games, as well as for all the different variations of the game out there. Here we will go over the basics of understanding the odds and beating them.

Understanding the Odds

The odds of a live bingo game are quite easy to understand. The more cards are in play the smaller the chance of a single card to get a bingo. So, for instance, if there are 100 cards available in a game and you purchase one, then your chances of winning are 1 in 100. The more cards you buy, the bigger your chances get.

Another way of looking at the odds is through the number of calls made so far. As it increases so does your chance of winning. The number of calls depends on the type of game you are playing, but the idea here is that the further the game progresses, the fewer balls are left. So the chance of your numbers coming up is increased.

There are typically two formats of bingo – one with a 5×5 grid and one with a 3×9 grid. The first one is the US format, while the 3×9 is used all over Europe, and specifically in the UK. The numbers in play in the European version are from 1 to 90 and each row has 5 squares with numbers and 4 empty ones. The numbers are placed in accordance with the columns, so in the first column, you would get a number from 1 to 10.

Winning Odds

It is important to note that different variations of bingo may have different winning combinations. You need to take that into account before starting a game or deciding how many cards to buy. In the UK variation with the 3×9 grid, you can win by getting a one-line bingo, which means that you have covered all the numbers on a single row. You can also get a two-line bingo, which is the same but with two rows, and a full house bingo, which means that you have covered all the numbers on all three rows.

With the US version of bingo, with the 5×5 grid, you get some different winning combinations. Some are as simple as a line of numbers, or corners, but there are also some that demand you to complete a specific predetermined pattern. There are many further variations of bingo that use the same 5×5 grid and offer all sorts of challenges to players.

How to Better Your Odds

Basically, the only way to make your odds better is to get more cards. This increases your chances significantly if you are playing in a smaller venue. In bigger venues, it is still the only way to do it but perhaps you should be careful and decide beforehand how much you are willing to spend on a card.

In online bingo, the odds are usually very hard to beat as there are more players involved, which means that there are more cards. Additionally, online bingo works with a Random Number Generator, so that guarantees the fairness of the game.

Difference Between Live Bingo and Online Bingo Odds

While it is true that bingo remains the same game no matter whether you play live or online, there are still some very palpable differences between the two. The odds are different live and online because of the difference in the number of people involved in the game.

Playing live gives you some things that you simply cannot get in an online game of bingo. For example, the social factor – you can go to your favourite bingo venue with your friends and have a good time. This way it does not even matter if you win or lose because, at the end of the day, you have had fun.

However, playing online has a few advantages too. Despite not having people in the same room, you can actually chat with other players in most online bingo games. Additionally, it is usually a lot cheaper to play online and there are larger prize pools involved because of the great number of players.

Another differentiating factor when it comes to bingo games is their open hours. With live bingo, you usually have set times for games and you cannot enjoy them from the comfort of your home. With online bingo, however, you can play whenever you want, wherever you want and for as long as you want.

We mentioned automatic daubing earlier but it does more than just facilitate the game. In a live venue you must pay close attention to the numbers called and mark them all. This takes time and attention as the numbers in some games are called very quickly. The reason why this matters is because it takes away the social factor of the game.

You cannot converse with your friends while getting constantly interrupted. Whilst, online, you can chat with people without paying any attention to the game at all because it will do everything for you and there is no chance of you to miss something.

Odds of Online Bingo

The odds of online bingo are pretty straightforward as you can see the exact number of players in a game. This gives you a better understanding of the situation and you can decide whether it is worth it to join in or not. If there are thousands of players, your odds would be worse than if there were ten.

Additionally, you usually have a guaranteed prize in each game and a set jackpot. This will further facilitate your understanding of the game and the odds involved. Usually, online bingo games offer bigger jackpots than live bingo ones. Bingo games usually have progressive jackpots. That means that every player who joins in and buys a card partially contributes to the prize pool.

Along with that, there are some other significant differences between the two. Online, you can find many more variations of the classic game of bingo than in usual venues. You also have the option of letting the game automatically mark your winning spots. In fact, most if not all online bingo games automatically mark the numbers and call bingo for you, though you still have the option for manual daubing.

Despite the bingo standard for the UK being 3×9, most online bingo games are with a 5×5 grid. This changes the odds. There are five columns each carrying one letter of the word ‘bingo’.

The numbers go from 1 to 75 and are dispersed evenly on each column with the exception of the ‘N’ column which has 4 numbers instead of 5. It has a Free Space and it is the only one with it. Of course, when you do the maths, you realize that each column, aside from the aforementioned, has 5 out of 15 possible numbers. This version of bingo, however, has slightly worse odds.

Bingo Strategy

A crucial part of creating a bingo strategy is knowing your limits and setting them. You have to know when to cut your losses. Being just one number away from a bingo does not mean that you are going to get it next time. You need to remember to be responsible, no matter how tempting another game of bingo may seem.

You must also be very considerate and careful. Consider your venue, be it landbased or virtual, as well as the rules of the version of the game you have selected. Be mindful of your fellow players and specifically, how many of them there are. Take into consideration the number of cards they have too.

Once you know how many players and cards are included in the game, you can assess whether you should enter this game or not. Based on these facts, you can also decide how many cards you should purchase and if you can only afford one card, whether this specific game is worth joining.

It is also important to remember that a winning streak does not mean that you will keep winning indefinitely. You must know when to stop. The same way, a losing streak does not mean you will keep losing. Bingo is a game of chance and its results are completely random. Keep that in mind at all times and be careful with your finances.
Another important factor is that of finding the balance between the right number of players and the current value of a progressive jackpot. As we mentioned earlier, the progressive jackpot grows when more people play, however, sometimes a bingo game of this kind may have no active players at the moment. That is when you can make easy money.

Usually, though, wherever there is a large jackpot, there is a large number of people accompanying it. So, a viable strategy, in this case, would be finding games with an average amount of players and buying cards accordingly. This way you are spending your money on more than one game but you stand a better chance at winning.

So, the only viable strategy for playing bingo is assessing the number of cards you would need to purchase in order to stand a good chance. And you can do this by taking into account how many players are participating in the game and how many cards are available. However, you must also take into consideration the number of cards they have.


There are actually many different versions on the internet and a few main ones in landbased venues throughout the world.

You can play in both landbased venues and online.

You cannot usually speak to people while playing a game of online bingo, however, most of those games have chats where you can communicate with other players through writing.

That depends on a few factors like how many people are participating in the game, what version of bingo you are playing and others that we have explained in more detail above.