Is tombola the same as bingo?

Last Updated on by Amelia Cassiday

It is easy to see why people may be confused about tombola and bingo being the same, especially based on the results from a Google search.

Tombola, as it is meant to be played is considerably different to bingo, based on the mechanics of how each one works. If when thinking about tombola, you are thinking of a big metal drum (tombola drum) with little tickets in that you would see at some kind of village fete, then you would be right and also, this would usually be to raise money for a good cause.

You win prizes by drawing a ticket that traditionally either ends in a either a five or zero, which have often been donated, while the cost of having a go has many different variations. Sometimes, the charge will be anywhere between 50p and £2 per go, or three draws for £2.50 – it just depends on the kind of event that is being held.

Bingo however, is completely different. Many people think of traditional bingo as having a ticket with three rows and nine columns on, with every ticket being different in terms of the different numbers that it has on it. An announcer would then draw numbers and players mark off each number.

Is tombola the same as bingo?

Prizes are awarded for successfully marking off the four corners (if possible), getting a row complete, two rows and finally a ‘full house’ (three rows) and usually resulting in the grand prize or jackpot – resulting in the winning player calling ‘Bingo’. In the UK the highest ever recorded payout (view our list of best online casinos that payout) for a bingo full house was £1.1 million. 

Online bingo has many different variations for players to enjoy, from 90 ball, 80 ball, 75 ball, 50 ball and even 30 ball bingo games, with a vast number of sites listing specialising in their preferred versions.

It has become that popular over recent years that the major online gambling firms have started to offer the game, with some even buying smaller online bingo companies that had been operating under different brands, which in turn had built a huge following.

There are a wide range of bingo sites, each one appealing to many different people for many different reasons. Perhaps one of the most reputable is a household name in the world of bingo; Mecca, founded by Eric Morley (TV host and founder of the Miss World pageant), has been running since 1961 as a way of filling dance halls.

As a result, when it moved online, the company had a wealth of experience and was able to offer players a great variety based on well informed decisions.

Today, there are well over 250 bingo sites in the UK and Ireland alone, with many more being released every year as companies find ways of being able to narrow down on new niches, such as themed sites to capture the imagination of a relevant target audience.

 

So why would people think tombola is the same as bingo?

The biggest reason why people might confuse the two, is because there is a site called Tombola Bingo, however this is simply the brand name. While tombola does have a very loose basis of the traditional bingo game, the online version is actually a world apart.

One very indistinct reason is because that in Italy, tombola was a board game, first played in Naples during the 18th century and usually at Christmas, that was similar to the traditional version of bingo, with prizes being symbolic. Whether the version of tombola that is known in the UK today was based on the Italian version is unknown, though highly improbable in the grand scheme of things.

  • Win Upto 500 Spins on Fluffy Favourites
    • Win upto 500 spins on Fluffy Favourties
    • VIP bingo site
    • UK licensed
    • Great slots
    Play Now

    Terms Apply

    £300 Welcome Bonus
    • 100% welcome bonus up to £300
    • Highly extensive gaming suite
    • Jackpot slots
    • Live dealer rooms
    Play Now

    Terms Apply

    Get 100% up to £100 + 50 free spins
    • 100% bonus up to £100
    • 50 free spins on Starburst
    • Licenced by the Gambling Commission
    • Multiple software providers
    Play Now

    Terms Apply

    18+. New players only. One bonus offers per player. Minimum deposit of £20 Max bonus bet £5 Bonus funds must be used within 30 days and bonus spins within 10 days, otherwise any unused bonus or spins shall be removed. Bonus spins are valid on Starburst video slot game only. Bonus spins winnings are credited in form of bonus funds and are capped at £50 Bonus funds are 100% of your first deposit up to £100 Bonus funds are separate to Cash funds and are subject to 35 x wagering the total of bonus plus cash funds. Only bonus funds count towards wagering contribution. Terms Apply.

    Claim Bonus
    Play with £50 + 50 Free Spins
    • Excellent range of games
    • Secure Payment Methods
    • Great customer support
    • Nice welcome bonus
    Play Now

    Terms Apply

    New players, Valid until further notice. Min deposit £10 for 400% Bingo Bonus up to £100 + 50 Enchanted Free Spins [FS] (FS wins are granted in games bonus after all FS are used, FS granted over a period of 2 days, wins cap £7.5). Wins from Bingo Bonus carries a wagering requirement of 4x (deposit+bonus) and for Free Spins 85x. Games Bonus wins cap: £100 + the initial bonus amount. Wagering req, Vary by game. Deposit can be withdrawn at any time. 18+. Withdrawal restrictions & full T&Cs apply

    Claim Bonus
    Play £10 Get £30 of Free Bingo
    • Play £10 Get £30 of Free Bingo
    • No Wagering
    • Excellent On Mobile
    Play Now

    Terms Apply

    Deposit £10 Play With £50 & 15 Bonus Spins
    • Deposit £10 Play With £50
    • 15 Bonus Spins
    • Variety of bingo games
    • Hundreds of slots
    Play Now

    Terms Apply

    New players only. Deposit min £10 with code to get 200% bingo bonus plus 200% games bonus (total max bonus £100) + 15 Free Spins [FS]. One 1st Deposit Bonus available per player. FS available for 7 days and can only be used on slot game 'Fluffy Favorites', FS wins granted in games bonus after all FS are used and capped at £4. Bonus wins are capped at £100, exc. jp win. To withdraw winnings related to bingo bonus, wager 2 times the deposit + bonus funds. To withdraw games bonus and related winnings, wager 50 times the amount of the bonus; wagering requirements vary by game. Deposit balance can be withdrawn at any time. Withdrawal restrictions and Further T&Cs apply

    Claim Bonus