Our list of traditional fun bingo calls includes some bingo number names that are still used to this very day. While there is no official list of bingo phrases, the ones included in this article have been around for quite some time.
Number 1, Kelly’s Eye – the first number in the pack has a bingo name whose origin is uncertain. Some players believe that it refers to the Australian outlaw Ned Kelly, while others think that this nickname comes from the music hall song ‘Has Anybody Here Seen Kelly?’.
Number 2, One Little Duck / Me and You – this bingo calling number comes from a visual clue, where the written number 2 resembles One Little Duck swimming. Some Cockney callers also use ‘Me and You’, which rhymes with the number 2.
Number 3, Cup of Tea / A Flea – there is no doubt that tea is the most British drink, so its inclusion as part of fun bingo calls is expected. Both ‘Cup of Tea’ and ‘A Flea’ are simple rhymes, with the latter also being a visual clue since a flea resembles the number 3.
Number 4, Knock at the Door – this one is nothing more than a simple rhyme.
Number 5, Man Alive / One Little Snake – in old conversation, ‘Man Alive’ was used as an expression of disbelief, most notably among sailors, which rhymes with the number. On the other hand, ‘One Little Snake’ is a visual clue.
Number 6, Tom Mix / Chopsticks – Tom Mix was a star of many Western movies in the early 20th Century, who was known for his impressive stunts. This bingo number saying was chosen for 6 as it rhymes, the same with ‘Chopsticks’.
Number 7, Lucky Number Seven – In many cultures, the number 7 is a symbol of good luck and fortune, also appearing in other casino games such as slots. This number also has important symbolism in Catholicism, Islam, and Buddhism.
Number 8, Garden Gate / One Fat Lady – As expected from most bingo numbers, ‘Garden Gate’ is a simple rhyme. On the other hand, ‘One Fat Lady’ is a visual joke that refers to the number 8 having a shape similar to a fat lady.
Number 9, Doctor’s Orders – One of the bingo phrases that has been kept since the times of the army. It was commonplace for army medics to stop working at 9 pm.
Number 10, Blind 10 / Cock ‘n’ Hen – in bingo calling numbers, the prefix ‘blind’ is used for the numbers 10, 20, 30 etc as they have zeros that visually resemble a single eye. ‘Cock ‘n’ Hen’ is a Cockney rhyme slang for ten.
Number 11, Legs Eleven – a visual bingo nickname since the number 11 resembles a pair of legs.
Number 12, One Dozen – a standard linguistic bingo call since 12 is referred to as a dozen.
Number 13, Unlucky for Some – as opposed to number 7, 13 is often referred to as the unlucky number and a symbol of misfortune. In fact, there is a recognised phobia of the number 13 called triskaidekaphobia.
Number 14, Valentine’s Day – refers to February 14th as Valentine’s Day.
Number 15, Young and Keen – a simple rhyme.
Number 16, Sweet Sixteen / Never Been Kissed – these two different bingo calling numbers refer to the two songs of the same name by Shirley Temple and Val Doonican, which are still quite popular to this day.
Number 17, Old Ireland – a reference to March 17th, St Patrick’s Day.
Number 18, Coming of Age - One of the bingo numbers that refer to the age at which people come of age, a milestone when children enter adulthood and can vote and legally drink.
Number 19, Goodbye-Teens – the last year of a person’s teenage years.
Number 20, Blind 20 / One Score – In old English, a ‘score’ was used as a unit of measure by shepherds to count their livestock. They used to count to 20, a score, and mark it on a stick so as to not lose count.
Number 21, Key to the Door / Royal Salute – another one of those bingo phrases referring to age. Generally, young adults at 21 are considered mature enough to own their own set of house keys. Callers can also say ‘Royal Salute’ as The Queen is honoured with a 21-gun salute.
Number 22, All the Twos / Two Little Ducks – the most common bingo phrase is the play on words of ‘All the Twos’. ‘Two Little Ducks’ refers to the bingo call for Number 2, and players generally reply to the caller with quacking noises.
Number 23, The Lord Is My Shepherd / A Duck with a Flea – The first call refers to the first line of Psalm 21, while ‘A Duck with a Flea’ combines the calls for numbers 2 and 3.
Number 24, Two Dozen - 12 x 2 = 24.
Number 25, Duck and Dive - a simple rhyme.
Number 26, Pick ‘n’ Mix / Half a Crown – the first call is a simple rhyme with some nostalgia as it refers to self-service sweet shops where clients used to pay by weight. ‘Half a Crown’ refers to the old British currency, where half a crown was two shillings and sixpence.
Number 27, Gateway to Heaven – a simple rhyme
Number 28, Over Weight / The Old Braggs – seeing as 8 is the fat lady, 28 is used as a rhyme with an inside pun. The Old Braggs is a military nickname given to the 28th North Gloucestershire Regiment of Foot.
Number 29, Rise and Shine – a simple rhyme.
Number 30, Blind 30 / Speed Limit – in most British residential areas, the speed limit is 30 miles per hour.
Number 31, Get up and Run – a simple rhyme.
Number 32, Buckle my Shoe – a simple rhyme.
Number 33, All the Threes – a visual clue.
Number 34, Ask for More – a simple rhyme.
Number 35, Jump and Jive – a rhyme referring to a popular dance in the 40s and 50s.
Number 36, Three Dozen – 12 x 3 = 36.
Number 37, More than Eleven – a simple rhyme.
Number 38, Christmas Cake – a not so simple rhyme.
Number 39, Steps – a fun bingos call that refers to the John Buchan novel and subsequent Alfred Hitchcock film ‘The Thirty Nine Steps’.
Number 40, Blind 40 / Two Scores – refers to previous bingo phrases.
Number 41, Time for Fun – a rhyme that refers to life beginning after the age of 40.
Number 42, Winne the Pooh - a rhyme that references the classic character by A. A. Milne.
Number 43, Down on your Knee – a simple rhyme.
Number 44, All the Fours – a visual clue.
Number 45, Halfway There – a visual clue as 45 is half 90, the last number used in Bingo.
Number 46, Up to Tricks – a simple rhyme.
Number 47, Four and Seven – a visual clue.
Number 48, Four Dozen – 12 x 4 = 48.
Number 49, Rise and Shine – a simple rhyme.
Number 50, Blind 50 / Half a Century – this bingo number saying is a visual clue.
Number 51, Tweak of the Thumb – a simple rhyme.
Number 52, Weeks of the Year / Deck of Cards – this bingo number saying refers to the 52 weeks in a year, and also to a standard deck of 52 playing cards.
Number 53, Stuck in the Tree – a simple rhyme.
Number 54, Clean the Floor – a simple rhyme.
Number 55, Snakes Alive – both a rhyme and a visual joke, as the number 5 resembles a snake.
Number 56, Was she Worth It – a bit of strange bingo call, as back in the 1950s, the cost of obtaining a marriage license was set at five shillings and sixpence.
Number 57, Heinz Varieties - Heinz is a popular brand of sauces and baked beans, with the number 57 appearing prominently on its ketchup bottles.
Number 58, Make them Wait – a simple rhyme.
Number 59, Brighton Line – a rhyme used to refer to train route 59 which connect London to Brighton.
Number 60, Blind 60, Five Dozen – 12 x 5 = 60.
Number 61, Bakers Bun – a simple rhyme.
Number 62, Turn of the Screw / Tickety Boo – the former bingo phrase refers to a book of the same name by Henry James about demonically possess children. Tickety Boo is less nefarious, as it is a military phrase that rhymes with 62.
Number 63, Tickle Me – a simple rhyme.
Number 64, Red Raw – a simple rhyme.
Number 65, Old Age Pension Bun – This Bingo number harks back to the time when people used to retire at the age of 65.
Number 66, Clickety Click – a simple rhyme.
Number 67, Made in Heaven – a simple rhyme.
Number 68, Pick a Mate – a simple rhyme.
Number 69, Either Way Up / Meal for Two– a very common and understood sexual innuendo.
Number 70 – Blind 70 / Three Score & Ten – 20 X 3 + 10 = 70.
Number 71, Bang on the Drum – a simple rhyme.
Number 72, Six Dozen – 12 x 6 = 72.
Number 73, Queen Bee – a simple rhyme.
Number 74, Candy Store – a simple rhyme.
Number 75, Strive and Strive – a simple rhyme.
Number 76, Trombones – This bingo number name refers to a famous line from the 1950s musical ‘The Music Man’, which goes by “Seventy-Six trombones led the big parade”.
Number 77, All the Sevens – a visual clue.
Number 78, Heaven’s Gate – a simple rhyme.
Number 79, One More Time – a simple rhyme.
Number 80, Blind 80 / Ate Nothing – a visual clue.
Number 81, Fat Lady with a Walking Stick – as already established, the bingo call for 8 is the old fat lady, so an added number 1 gives the impression of a walking stick.
Number 82, Straight on Through – a simple rhyme.
Number 83, Time for Tea – a simple rhyme.
Number 84, Seven Dozen – 12 x 7 = 84.
Number 85, Staying Alive – a simple rhyme.
Number 86, Between the Sticks – one of the few sporting fun bingo calls, where the numbers allude to the position of a football keeper standing between the goalposts.
Number 87, Torquay in Devon – a simple rhyme.
Number 88, All the Eights / Two Fat Ladies – two visual clues.
Number 89, Nearly There – the penultimate bingo number.
Number 90, Top of the Shop / End of the Line – the final number in Bingo.