Bingo Help Center
Bingo’s basic rules are as follows:
Bingo is a lottery disguised as a game.
The following description from the 1978 Royal Commission report is a good place to start understanding bingo:
‘Bingo is a lottery game. In exchange for their unchosen stake, each player receives a random set of numbers. The winner is the first person who can prove that they have marked off all of the numbers in the set, or a specific section of the numbers, that they were given.
Parliament has mandated that we do not change our position on the issue. However, given the industry’s rapid growth and expansion, we believe it is necessary to clarify our views on the difference between bingo and other forms of gambling.
Avoid developing and offering products that we can categorize as casino games, lotteries or fixed betting by following our advice:
Our office has been flooded with inquiries regarding new game types suggested to be marketed as bingo in bingo licensed venues by both the conventional bingo industry and new or potential newcomers. We also corresponded with the Bingo Association about bingo’s definition.
Because it outlines our views on the fundamental needs for a gambling product recognized as bingo, we believe it is beneficial to show this advice, even though only courts have the authority to interpret the law.
When do you need a license?
You must first obtain a license from us to provide bingo to players for a profit in the UK.
A license is required to run any type of online or remote bingo business, such as through gambling websites or apps.
Your license must be valid for the activity you plan. If you plan to run a bingo hall from a physical location, you will also need a license from the local licensing authority.
When you don’t need a license
A license is not required to run bingo for charitable or recreational purposes.
Read our guide on how to legally run bingo to learn about the rules and whether or not you need a license or permit.