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There are billions of people all around the world that are baffled by bingo, and there are billions of people all around the world who are beloved to it. The ball-busting game is mainly popular in the USA, the UK and some Scandinavian countries, but in other nations, no one has even heard of the game! Not matter whether you are a ballsy bingo lover or have never dabbed a number off in your life, there are plenty of online bingo casinos where you can play.

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“Here is the latest gaming guide supplied by your friends at NewCasinos.org to help you get the most out of your bingo play.”


Many ‘bingo historians’ claims that bingo was invented in Italy in the 1500 hundreds, although how close the game mentioned there at the time is to bingo is something that is disputed. Lottery games have been played for hundreds of years, and although bingo is close to a lottery-style game, it isn’t actually a lottery. Keno is much more a lottery-style game than bingo, so maybe those early forms of ‘bingo’ were actually closer to keno.

What is more commonly-recognised as bingo began in Mexico in the mid-1800s. An English traveller recorded a game he saw there called ‘La Lotteria’. Players marked a card containing 25 numbers from 1 to 90. They marked the numbers off the card as a caller drew balls from a bag.  If this account is accurate, then this version is very similar to the US version of bingo played in modern times.

It is thought a slightly different version of bingo originated in Malta. Here cards had three rows, but not all squares had a number. A card would contain five numbers in each row. Players could win prizes for completing one row, two rows or their entire card.

Via Malta, this game became a craze in the UK’s armed forces. The players in the army called it ‘housey-housey’ (because players shouted ‘house’ when completing a card) but players in the navy called it ‘tombola’ after a similar Italian game that used the same style of card.

Nobody knows why bingo is called bingo. One theory is that the game in Mexico was known as ‘beano’ as players used beans to cover the numbers on their cards when they came up. In the late 1920s, a toy salesman called Edwin S. Lowe was said to have been watching a game when a winner accidentally yelled ‘bingo!’ instead of ‘beano’. Lowe printed the first mass-produced cards in the US, and he decided the call the game ‘bingo’.

This account is unlikely to be true though as there is evidence that the game was already called ‘bingo’ in the UK in the late 1920s.

How to Play Bingo at Online Casinos

There are two ways that you can play bingo at online casinos. You can also play bingo at dedicated online bingo sites.

The first (and most popular) way is via a bingo room. Here, you are placed into a virtual ‘bingo room’ with some other real players. One person from the site’s staff is attached to the room as well to oversee proceedings. Most bingo rooms have chat applets so that the players can talk to each other via text. The ‘chat room host’ is there to make sure that matters remain friendly and to keep proceedings entertaining.

Bingo play in the room is completely automated, and the software used both draws the balls and marks off all players cards. Prizes may be awarded to the first player to complete a line, and the first player to complete two lines (and so on in some versions of bingo). The top prize though is for the first person to complete their entire card.

Prize money in bingo is usually generated from the fees paid by all the people playing the game, with a percentage handed to the site running the room. The prize/rake ratio (for example) could be 50-25-15-10. This would mean that the person completing the full card would get 50%, the person with two lines 25%, the person with one line 15% and the site 10%. If 100 people playing had paid $1 each, then the prize money would be $50, $25, $15 with $10 going to the site.

It is, of course, possible to win more than one prize per game, and that is something that happens more often than not. Players can also buy more than one bingo ticket for each game, up to a permitted maximum. Play begins once all tickets have been sold, or after a recognised time period.

The second version of bingo is RNG-based bingo (RNG = random number generation). Here, you play via an app in the same way that you play RNG-based blackjack or RNG-based roulette. The app puts you in a bingo game with several computer-generated players. The app draws the balls and marks both your card and the cards of all the fictional players. If you complete your card (or line(s), if appropriate) before all the fictional players, then you are the winner.

Most bingo players prefer bingo room bingo as opposed to RNG-based bingo.

Bingo Variants

There are actually several different forms of bingo, and most bingo rooms will offer more than one version of bingo at their sites. The most popular forms of bingo are 75-ball bingo, and 90-ball bingo.

75-ball bingo

This version of bingo is the version that is played in the United States. Here, bingo cards are arranged in a five-by-five grid. The central square of the card is marked by a star which means it is ‘free’ and already considered marked off.

US-style bingo involves the drawing from 75 numbered balls. Cards are usually sold in sets of three, all containing different numbers. This means that 72 of the numbers drawn from the bingo machine will be on a player’s set of cards somewhere. The ‘missing’ three numbers are those ‘covered’ by the free squares in the centre of each card.

Players win by completing one of the cards in their set of three. Prizes may also be awarded for the first player to complete a line, or two lines, or three lines and so on. Depending upon the rules of any particular games, a ‘line’ must be a line of five either vertical or horizontal. Some games may permit diagonal lines of five numbers too.

90-ball bingo

The second most popular version of bingo is the version this is familiar to all bingo players in the UK. A card has three rows and nine columns. Not all squares on the card contain a number, though – in total the card with have fifteen numbers with five on each line. Some columns will contain one number, and others two. A column will seldom contain three numbers.

Balls are drawn in UK-style bingo from a drum containing 90 numbered balls. The ‘big’ winner is the first person to complete their entire card. Prizes may also be awarded for the first player to complete a single line, and the first player to complete two lines.

80-ball bingo

80-ball bingo is the version of bingo that will be familiar to people in Sweden and other Scandinavian countries. Here each bingo card will contain sixteen numbers with (usually) no free squares. Numbers rise in sequence from left to right, i.e. the first column will contain numbers from 1 to 20, the second 21 to 40 and so on.

In many versions of 80-ball bingo players play with a strip as opposed to a single card. A strip contains five 4×4 grids all containing sixteen numbers. All cards on the strip contain numbers that are not used on the other cards, meaning that all numbers from the eighty that are drawn will appear somewhere on the strip. When playing 80-ball bingo online, it is more likely that you will be playing with a single card as opposed to an entire strip.

Payouts are usually made to players being the first to complete one line on their card, then two and so on. Usually, the two diagonals on each card are counted as lines. The biggest prize pot, of course, goes to the player who is first to mark off all the numbers on any one of their cards.

30-ball, 40-ball, 50-ball bingo

While not usually offered in real-world bingo halls, these versions of bingo are ‘super speedy’ variants in which ‘bingo’ calls happen more frequently that is the norm because of the low number of balls used. Each game usually has its own bespoke set-up in the way that numbers are arranged on cards, and the rules governing the way the game is run.

Pattern bingo

Pattern bingo is a variant of 75-ball bingo or 80-ball bingo. Before each game, a designated ‘pattern’ on the bingo card is shown. This could be some shape or an image supposedly depicting some object or element. If you are the first player to complete all the numbers on your card that fall within the specific pattern, then you are awarded a bonus prize.

Progressive jackpot bingo

This style of bingo can be any of the major bingo variants but with a bonus in the form of a progressive jackpot that builds up and builds up over time. Typically, to land a progressive jackpot, a player has to complete their card within a specified number of bingo ball calls. If no one wins the jackpot (as is common) then the total is held over to the next game, and so on. Some progressive jackpot games have jackpots over $1,000,000 but have tight ‘number of calls’ totals making the jackpot incredibly hard to win.


Slingo is a popular game that is not quite a bingo and is not quite slots but a mixture of both. It is purely an RNG-based game using a 5×5 card. Instead of bingo balls being drawn, a single-line, five-row slot selects the numbers instead. Jokers can land as well – these can either be used in the column under which they land, or anywhere on the bingo card.

The game aims to complete as many lines on the card as possible. If you complete a minimum number of lines than you win a cash prize and, as you might expect, the more lines you complete, the bigger your prize.

There are many versions of Slingo that can be found at online casinos all across the internet.

Successful Bingo Strategy at Online Casinos

You are not going to be surprised when we tell you that there is no such thing as bingo strategy at online casinos. Bingo is based on chance and nothing else. Someone who has played one million games of bingo is just as likely to win a game of bingo as someone who has never played before.

We recommend that you balance your play between RNG-based bingo and online bingo rooms. When you do use a bingo room and use the chat applet, make sure that you keep everything friendly! Toxic players are not allowed in bingo rooms and lifetime bans are often their punishment.

Bingo is a leisurely pastime, but it is still a gambling game, so make sure that you follow our bankroll management tips, available on the main page of our online gaming guides section.


Bingo is very entertaining and is extremely popular in many areas of the world, and in particular in English-speaking countries. While real-world bingo is associated with ladies in their 50s and over, online anyone can play and can enjoy themselves with online bingo, no matter if they play an RNG-based bingo game, or in a dedicated online bingo room.

Bingo can be as habit-forming as any other pastime that involves money and chance, so make sure you manage your bingo bankroll properly, and never spend money on bingo tickets that should be spent on more important aspects of life, such as food and utility bills.

Bingo FAQ

  • What happens if I miss a number when playing then find out later I would have won if I had marked it off? Can I still claim a prize?

    At online bingo casinos, all numbers are marked off automatically for you, so there is no chance of you missing a number. You simply watch your bingo card filling up as more and more numbers are drawn. Wins are also credited automatically.

    If you are talking about real-world bingo then usually if you miss a number then it’s a case of ‘hard luck, must do better next time.”

  • I played online bingo and keep seeing things like ‘3TG’ and ‘1TG’ flashing up. What does this mean?

    ‘1TG’ (for example) means ‘one to go’. This means that you only have one number ‘to go’ before you win a prize. If that number gets drawn before anyone else completes their card (or a line if that is the current prize) then you are a winner.

  • I was talking to someone about bingo and they started going on about ‘two little ducks’ and ‘two fat ladies’. What are they talking about?

    In the UK it has long been a tradition for numbers to have a specific call when they are announced. This is to make sure that people knew implicitly which number has been drawn and to give them time to mark them off on their cards. Two little ducks are twenty-two, and two fat ladies are eighty-eight. Others include then number 10 is called with the name of the current Prime Minister and ‘den’, as the UK Prime Minister traditionally lives at 10, Downing Street.

  • What are the odds of winning a game of bingo?

    Every player has the same chance of winning, so it depends on the number of bingo tickets you have bought and the number of bingo tickets sold for the game. If you have bought six tickets and one hundred have been sold then your odds of winning are 6 in 100, or 50-3 (6%).

  • How do I know online bingo is fair?

    Because with any bingo game, there *has* to be a winner. The outcome for the online bingo room if they fixed their bingo or not would be exactly the same – someone would win. The prize money comes from bingo tickets sales anyhow.

    It is a legal requirement that all bingo software used online by licensed bingo sites has to be ratified by independent auditors. If you play at a licensed online bingo site, then you are perfectly safe.

  • Can I not just buy all the tickets for a game of bingo to guarantee a win?

    You can but there would be no point doing that as your prize money would be less than the total cost of the tickets

  • What if I buy a ticket for an online bingo game and my PC crashes just as the game starts?

    All paid-for cards are marked automatically, so your card will be marked in your absence. Any wins will automatically be paid into your account.

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