Bingo Card

When playing bingo online or in a bingo hall, bingo cards are used as part of the gameplay. These cards are used to mark off the numbers as they are called by the bingo caller or the random number generator.

Bingo Card

The History of Bingo Cards

Bingo originated back in Italy in the 1500s and was named ‘Lo Gioco del Lotto d’Italia’. This game is played in a very similar way to how bingo still operates today. It then started to become popular in France in the 1700s, and paper cards were introduced to register bingo numbers as they were called.

The first bingo cards were reusable as they could not easily be printed. Instead of marking off the numbers on the bingo card, tokens were used to mark numbers. The bingo cards in use had the numbers painted on by hand, or the numbers were stamped onto a thick cardboard. As there was no random number generator software available during this time, the uniqueness of bingo cards was limited as the randomisation of numbers had to be done by those painting the numbers on.

Nowadays, bingo halls predominantly use a type of bingo card called ‘flimsies’. These are very thin sheets of paper with up to nine cards per sheet printed. There are, however, still some bingo halls that use paper or cardboard for their bingo cards. Another increasingly popular type of bingo card available at bingo halls is the electronic bingo card. This makes the randomisation of the bingo cards much easier.

Bingo Card Variations

There are only a few types of bingo cards that are used in the vast bulk of bingo games. This includes the 90 ball and 75 ball bingo cards which are played on 9×3 and 5×5 grids. Here is more information on the most common types of bingo cards found in bingo games:

90 Ball Bingo Cards

90 ball bingo cards are predominantly used in the UK and have three rows with nine columns. There are five numbers on each row and each row contains four blank spaces that are placed at random. Each column will contain a number from within a set range.

Column Set Number Range
Column 1 1 – 9
Column 2 10 – 19
Column 3 20 – 29
Column 4 30 – 39
Column 5 40 – 49
Column 6 50 – 59
Column 7 60 – 69
Column 8 70 – 79
Column 9 80 – 90


75 Ball Bingo Cards

In 75 ball bingo games, the cards have five columns and five rows with a blank space in the centre of the card. Every other space is filled with a number. Each column is labelled with a letter that spells out BINGO.

Column Letter Set Number Range
Column ‘B’ 1 – 15
Column ‘I’ 16 – 30
Column ‘N’ 31 – 45
Column ‘G’ 46 – 60
Column ‘O’ 61 – 75


30 Ball Bingo Cards

30 ball bingo has one of the simplest types of bingo cards available. This game uses a bingo card with nine numbers on a 3×3 grid. It is also known as speed bingo, as this is a game that is completed very quickly. Each column has a set number range:

Column Set Number Range
Column 1 1 – 10
Column 2 11 – 20
Colum 3 21 – 30


 Online Bingo Cards

Online bingo cards use a random number generator to fill in the numbers on each card. It is easier for players to mark off multiple cards when playing online, as you can toggle the settings to have the cards marked automatically if a number on that card is called. In most online bingo games, players can purchase up to 96 bingo cards which would not be possible to do in a brick and mortar bingo hall.


Bingo cards are a staple of any bingo game and are used both online and in physical bingo halls. The random number generation has massively improved over the years, and players can use various bingo cards depending on the type of bingo game they are playing. No matter what type of bingo game you are playing, there will be an easy to use bingo card available to play it with.

Last updated: Jan 24, 2023

Lillian Grey

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Lillian Grey is a long time online bingo and slots player who started putting her thoughts down on digitial paper around 2008. Having been covering the industry for quite some time, she is able to spot the good from the bad when it comes to online bingo. An ever present at indsutry conferences and events, Lillian likes to meet fellow bingo enthusiasts to share stories and ideas, with maybe a glass of wine (or two) involved! When not covering the ever changing world of online bingo, she likes to read a good book and go for family walks in the forest.

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