Many visitors to online sites and online bingo players who are regulars within a 90 ball or 75 ball bingo room will have heard some of the calls associated with the numbers seen on a bingo ticket.
In fact, most players may have come across UK Bingo calls in everyday conversation as now, in the modern game of bingo, many of the calls actually take inspiration from popular culture, historical events and people.
If you’re new to the game and still unsure whether you should be keeping your eyes peeled for two little ducks or two fat ladies appearing on your bingo card, we’ve got you covered. Before diving head first into an online game, why not take a look at some of the most popular bingo calls and where their origins come from?
Before we set off on our little trip around the various list of bingo lingo you may uncover, we thought we’d offer a little insight into where many of the calls originated. Bingo is super popular in the UK, whether in the online variant or in a bingo hall, so it makes sense that many of the rhymes originated in the streets of London and came from cockney rhyming slang.
However, as the game has spread not only to the UK but worldwide, many UK Bingo calls have taken on regional connotations, which means the bingo calls list keeps getting bigger and bigger.
There are a total of 90 bingo numbers which are used within games across the UK, whether that’s online or in a land-based bingo hall. Many of these numbers will have some traditional bingo call associated with them, whether it's a rhyming slang term such as duck and dive for 25,or they’re based on popular culture such as Danny La Rue for 52, Some calls also come from the shape of the number, such as two little ducks, two fat ladies, or double hockey sticks. You will hear them regularly when playing, so you’ll be able to pick them up.
While many calls are often heard ringing around games and chat rooms, there is no official bingo calls list, most bingo lingo will change depending on the region it’s played, especially in a land-based setting, and this can even stretch to different countries it’s played, so although you can get to grips with modern bingo calls and common bingo calls, they’ll always be changing so they’ll be something new for you to learn.
When it comes to bingo nicknames, there are some calls which are iconic and instantly recognisable. However, if you’re looking for some of the biggest and best bingo call nicknames, we’ve listed some of them below:
4 - Knock at the door This terms comes from the famous nursery rhyme one, two buckle my shoe and combines three and four to knock on the door.
17 - Dancing Queen You can dance, you can jive as you hear Abba’s hit Dancing Queen. The popular song uses the age of 17 within it, which is where the connection comes from.
29- Rise and Shine This is one of the rhyming numbers which is very popular in bingo.
38 - Christmas Cake Another of the cockney rhyming slang numbers, this fruity number, refers to cake and in all fairness, who doesn't like Christmas cake?
88 - Two Fat Ladies Probably the most well-known of bingo calls, the two fat ladies refer to the shape of the number form. This can also be shown in the number 81, which is supposed to resemble one fat lady with a walking stick.
When it comes to themes surrounding common calls used, many draw inspiration from popular culture, whether it's from a specific date in history, a person, a piece of literature or a popular movie. There are many we can select. We’ve picked out a few, so you’ll be in the know.
10 - Downing Street Often partnered with the word ten and the current sitting prime minister, this bingo call takes inspiration from British politics
42 - Winnie the Pooh The lovable bear from literature Winnie the Pooh has made the switch to traditional bingo calls. If you hear the number 42, it's often accompanied by a call from Winnie the Pooh bingo callers
59 - Brighton Line This bingo call is linked with literature as it’s taken from the book The Importance of Being Ernest.
76 - Trombones Ever heard of the song 76 Trombones from the film The Music Man? Well, this call comes from the marching song heard in that movie in which 76 trombones are involved in the big parade.
When you play bingo online or in a bingo hall, there are bingo numbers which
50 - Half a Century When it comes to the number 50, it's half of 100, which is where the term half a century comes in when playing bingo games.
90 - Top of the Shop The final bingo number on offer in the bingo world is the number 90. Shop refers to the entire game of bingo, and the other word rhymes where Top of the Shop appears.
Bingo is known to be a well-loved pastime across many countries, and it’s no surprise that one of those countries is Australia. Previously called Housie, as that’s what was called by a player to win a game, many of the calls used in the modern game of online bingo today actually take inspiration from people and events down under.
Not familiar with the terms, how about Kelly’s Eye, which references one of Australia's greatest folk heroes Ned Kelly, or Snakes Alive for 55, which comes from the sheer amount of snakes in the country. However, if you’re not convinced with the Aussie links, then let's take a trip to the dance floor for number 85, and you shout staying alive.
When it comes to bingo calls and their link with various places, there are some crossovers, and the one which can cause an issue with the lots of bingo calls is the number 55. Often referred to as snakes alive, Irish bingo fans believe this refers to St Patrick and him driving the snakes out of Ireland.
When playing a game of bingo, many traditional bingo calls can often cause players to raise their eyebrows, especially if they have regional connotations. However, there are occasions when some bingo nicknames take a ruder turn, and it's these bingo numbers that cause many players to laugh out loud, whether they're playing in bingo halls or at home.
Unsure what we mean by these specific calls? Well, the first is potentially legs eleven. Often signifying the number 11 on a bingo card, the call of legs eleven is often accompanied by a whistle. The same can be said for the number 69, which the least said about that, the better.
Partnering these are some other bingo calls which fit in this category and may also be heard by a bingo caller depending on their location. However, we've listed the most common right here:
19 Keep' Em Keen Instead of goodbye teens for this call, the bingo call can revert to Keep 'em keen. However, the use of goodbye teens seems to be more common.
30 - Dirty Gertie Originating from a rhyme with the name Gertrude, it evolved following the introduction of a bawdy song in the Second World War and the term Dirty Gertie was also used by soldiers during World War II.