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15 Fun facts about Bingo that Will Sho...

Apr 25, 2017

Bingo has been around for a lot longer than you might think and has a lot of interesting stories you probably don’t know. Are you ready to expand your bingo knowledge? Check out some of these bingo facts that have both sources and come from our own experience as a premier online bingo site!

For the love of Bingo


(1) Bingo from 1530s

  • The earliest that we can trace a bingo-type game is back to the Renaissance era. In the 1530s, Italy was playing a game called Lo Giuoco del Lotto D’Italia, the Game of Italian Lottery.

(2) Bingo Cards as Educational Tool

  • The earliest bingo cards we have heard of come from Germany in the 1800s. Surprisingly, it wasn’t for gaming. They were used as educational tools for students to learn multiplication. See, there’s some history to math bingo!

(3) So Many Bingo Cards …

  • Have you ever wondered just how many bingo card combinations there are? One calculation puts the number of possible cards at 552,446,474,061,128,648,601,600,000!

(4) 6,000 Cards, all by hand

  • Despite having so many different combinations, the first bingo cards sold in a set for the U.S. may have caused a man’s insanity. Carl Leffler, a math professor from the University of Columbia was hired to generate 6,000 cards by hand random enough to give all the players an equal shot. Legend has it that the man went insane after his efforts. Remember, there were no computers or electronic calculators back then!

(5) 1,474,200 Ways to Win!

  • You might only play with the standard 5-in-a-row win, which gives you 12 different ways to win. But if you calculate out all the different combinations of spots on a 5×5 card, there’s actually 1,474,200 ways to win. You just have to convince your caller that your pattern is valid!

(6) Bingo, Beano

  • The word bingo, by legend, is said to have derived when an excited woman called the word out instead of beano, which is what the game used to be called. Beano was called that because they used to mark the cards with dried beans. Considering the use of the product we call Beano today, it’s probably a good thing we changed it.

(7) 80% Female

  • If you’re looking for a partner and you’re a guy, you might want to consider going to the bingo hall or playing online. Statistics show that around 80% of all bingo players are women. Many of them are European, where the game is very popular. And if you think they’re all old, think again. The fastest-growing segment of bingo players is under 35.

(8) #1 Reason for Playing Bingo?

  • Why do people play bingo? The top reason is for the sheer enjoyment of the game. Winning the big jackpot is only the fifth highest reason. Nevertheless, most regular bingo players do report hitting the big jackpot at least once in their lives. That’s a lot better than most regular slot machine players!

(9) Huge Market Size

  • Online bingo is huge, especially in Britain. In 2010, $640 million in revenue was earned by the online bingo industry. Half of that came from Britain.

(10) The Game You Love

  • About half of online bingo players play at least once a day. Considering the chat functions in online bingo, that means you have a good shot of keeping up a daily conversation with your bingo partners.

(11) Random-Generator at the core of it

  • Online bingo sites use random number generators to choose the numbers. In order to prove they are fair, bingo sites have to register their number generators with testing authorities that also work on real-world slot machines and other gaming devices that use electronics to generate random results.

(12) Bingo & Other Games

  • Bingo is a game that often sits at the edge of traditional gambling and non-gambling games. Some jurisdictions in the U.S. have a weird combination of slot machines and bingo machines. Each play actually generates a new bingo game and results from a set of cards. Depending on the results of those, you get a flashy electronic slots experience. The bingo results are displayed on a separate screen above the player’s head. This is a way to get around rules banning normal slot machines.

(13) Charity-driven

  • Despite a reputation for being a dowdy game in the U.S., over $90 million is spent each week on bingo cards. That’s a lot of charity games!

(14) 90-ball and other variations

  • If you play bingo across the pond, you’ll likely find a much different game than you’re used to. U.S. players play 75-ball bingo with a 5×5 card. Most other players play 90-ball bingo on a set of 9×3 cards.

(15) The Largest Bingo Win

  • The largest known bingo wins were recorded in Britain. One grandmother won over £1.1M at a bingo hall in Wales. The largest online win came in at £430,900.

With these facts in your pocket, you’ll be sure to impress some of your friends with your bingo knowledge.  Do you have any interesting facts that you’d like to share about online bingo?

Which of these 15 Fun Facts Were You Surprised By?

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