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Online Bingo Rules and Etiquette: A Player’s Guide to Being the Best


Why play bingo online?

A complete guide to online bingo rules

Top 10 rules of online bingo etiquette

Online bingo rules: if you play by the rules


Online, the bingo rules and etiquette differ slightly from those in local halls. The virtual game is just as fun, with unique variations for every player. 


Enter a relaxing bingo room or enjoy an action-packed game; the choice is yours. You can also meet other players, chat, and join an upbeat community. 


Like in a land-based hall, bingo etiquette and rules still apply online. Don’t be caught unaware. 


Brush up on your online bingo knowledge. Understand the do’s and don’ts. Make the most of your gameplay for a rewarding and enjoyable time.


Ready to become the best possible bingo player?  


Read on to discover the online rules of bingo and standard practices for good decorum. But first, let’s look at why bingo is worth playing online. 


Why play bingo online?

Playing bingo online is convenient, cost-effective, and fun. Thanks to the internet, you can join a virtual hall right from the comfort of your home. The perks don’t end there. 


Here are five major benefits of playing bingo online:


Various bingo games in one place

Unlike physical bingo, online bingo offers different game variations at any given time. Switch from one to another instantly or join a few rooms simultaneously. From easy-going 75-ball games to fast-paced speed bingo, the options are diverse.    


Most bingo sites have casino games too, so you’re never bored with your options. 


Play at any time on any device

Before the internet, players were limited to their local halls’ operating hours. That’s no longer the case. Nowadays, sites like Bingo Billy have live games 24/7. 


Enjoy your favorite bingo games at any time, no matter your schedule. Many mobile-friendly options exist too. You’re not limited to playing on your desktop PC.


Access free and low-cost bingo rooms

The top online bingo halls (like ours) have free rooms where you can win real money. Low-cost games are available too. Cards can cost as little as 5c each, with substantial jackpots up for grabs.


The bingo rules may differ. But these easy-on-the-pocket games are just as fun and exciting as other variations. 


Relaxed gameplay with automatic enhancements

Keeping up with the numbers called is one of the challenges of physical bingo games. If you don’t yell ‘BINGO!’ in time, you don’t win.


Most online bingo sites have an optional ‘auto daub’ feature that marks your numbers off for you. No more frantic shuffling to check your bingo cards in time. 


Other elements like card sorting and highlighting make online bingo even easier. Play many cards at once if you like. These features keep your best cards on top and notify you when you’re close to winning.      


Socialize and join a fun online community

Bingo is known for its social benefits. It’s always been a communal game. Players gather to converse, win, and have a good time. The internet has only enhanced that.


From live chat options to community forums, online bingo brings the social aspect to you. Chat with fellow players. Foster a like-minded community and meet people from around the world.


Bingo bonuses, rewards, and promotions

The best online bingo halls offer bonuses and loyalty rewards to regular players. These and other promotions make the game even more exciting. Players have numerous ways to win while spending less. 


A complete guide to online bingo rules


The rules of bingo are easy to understand for both online and land-based games. While the goal is primarily the same, several variations exist. These include 90-ball, 75-ball, 80-ball, and other game types.


Here’s your complete guide to online bingo rules, from the basics and beyond:


Basic online bingo rules

The aim of online bingo is simple. Players cross off numbers on a card as they’re drawn. The first to do so in the predetermined pattern wins. Remember, this is usually automated, so you never miss a number. 


The basic elements of online bingo include the following:


The bingo card

A bingo card typically has 24 randomly numbered squares arranged in a 5x5 grid. This differs for some variations. The center square is already marked, almost like a “wild card” to help you win.


Each column is labeled to make up the word ‘BINGO.’ Every row has numbers within a certain range, usually in ascending order from 1–75. Again, this bingo rule depends on the specific game. 


The numbers called

Like casino bingo, the game starts when the first ball is announced. This virtual ball displays a number with a corresponding letter (B, I, N, G, or O). During online bingo, these are drawn using random number generators (RNGs). 


Numbers are called until a participant wins by marking them off in the specified pattern. Some online bingo games have second and third prizes where more balls are drawn. The game ends once all winning patterns and called numbers are found.


The winning bingo patterns

Winning bingo boils down to completing the right pattern first. The classic rules of bingo provide three primary ways to win. These are based on the following formations:


  • 1-Line: A full line of numbers going across (horizontally).


  • 2-Line: Two full horizontal lines of numbers on the same bingo card.


  • Coverall, blackout, or full house: Every number on the card is covered, typically as the last winning formation of the game. 


Special bingo patterns exist too, but some famous ones include the following:


  • The arrow pattern goes diagonally across the ticket, pointing to one of the corners.


  • The pyramid formation uses nine spaces, starting from the bottom and leading upward.


  • The four-corner pattern is easy to achieve with just four spaces. Players must typically complete it within a limited number of balls.


  • The layer cake formation has three full horizontal lines on every odd row, starting from the top.


  • The outside edge pattern is tricky, requiring 16 spaces to make a square shape. It’s usually exclusive to 75-ball bingo.


Ultimately, your chosen bingo game determines the pattern needed to win. You might be looking to mark off numbers vertically, diagonally, or horizontally. Other unique formations exist too. Some are harder than others, with one or more patterns per game.


Let’s look at the bingo rules for the most popular game types.  


90-ball bingo rules

90-Ball bingo is a world-famous game. It’s primarily played in the United Kingdom (UK). A card contains a 9x3 grid with 15 randomly numbered squares from 1–90, hence the name. 


Each column’s numbers fall within a specific range. They start from 1–9, 10–19, 20–29, 30–39, and so on, ending with numbers 81–90 in the last column.


90-Ball bingo rules provide three winning opportunities:


  • Random numbers are called until a player achieves a full 1-line pattern


  • The game continues until a 2-line pattern is achieved. 


  • The third and final prize is won when someone completes a full house or coverall pattern


90-Ball bingo doesn’t typically include any other special winning patterns.


80-ball bingo rules

80-Ball bingo is relatively new and typically played online. A ticket has a 4x4 grid with 16 random numbers from 1–80. Like 90-ball cards, each column contains a number range in ascending order.


Depending on the specific bingo rules of the game, you can win with:


  • Full vertical, diagonal, or horizontal lines.


  • Four corner patterns.


  • Unique patterns like pyramids, arrows, and so forth


You’ll know the winning patterns before the game starts


75-ball bingo rules

75-Ball bingo is massively popular and known as America’s favorite. The cards have a 5x5 grid, 24 random numbers, and a blank or ‘wild’ center square. Once again, each column covers a specific number range, for an overall total of 1–75.


If you’re a pattern lover, this is the game for you. The bingo rules allow for lots of unique pattern wins, each declared before you play. These may include:


  • Full line wins going up, down, or diagonally.


  • Various patterns like diamonds, crosses, arrows, bells, and windmills.


  • Letter and number pattern wins.


Coveralls or full house formations are also common in 75-ball bingo. This variation is super exciting, with one or more winning patterns in a game.


30-ball, 40-ball, and 50-ball bingo rules

30-ball, 40-ball, and 50-ball online bingo work similarly to the above versions. But with fewer numbers and smaller grids, they’re fast-paced and action-packed. The stakes tend to be higher too, usually requiring a full house winning formation.


U-Pick ‘Em bingo rules

Although similar to keno, online U-Pick ‘Em is widely recognized as a bingo game. Players pick the numbers and corresponding letters. The goal is to match these with their bingo cards. Many variants exist, so check the precise game rules before playing.