I have seen a lot of adverts recently for bingo cruises. Have you ever been on any?
The one that caught my eye was to celebrate a certain website’s “24th Annual World Championship Bingo Tournament and Gaming cruise. The promotion says that over $100,000 in cash and prizes will be awarded — $80,000 guaranteed for The World Championship Bingo Tournament alone! The cruise takes in some very exotic locations, including Nassau. From the comments of people who have gone on previous years, it seems that they have a dedicated bunch of (fairly well-off!) people who go year after year.
I’ve never been on any sort of Bingo cruise, or even played Bingo while at sea, or even on a river (unless a small game on a narrow boat on the Norfolk Broads counts). I guess it combines the best elements of what people want: a holiday that takes in a number of exotic locations, like-minded people, and of course the game we all love- Bingo!
I also note that the cruise ship is very large, and therefore unlikely to be troubled by anything but the worse weather at sea.
I did once play roulette on a cross-channel ferry from Ramsgate to Boulogne during what was described as “heavy swell”. That could have described the state of my stomach! If the table wasn’t baize, then the chips would probably have been slipping over into different numbers. Sadly there was no Bingo, and in any case, I doubt that I’d have been able to sustain more than 5 minutes sitting down, without having to flee on deck, for the usual land-lubber reasons in dodgy sailing weather!
But I do like the idea of a Bingo-themed holiday. Assuming not everyone has enough money to pay for a cruise, then what other options might there be? Perhaps a rail journey? Maybe Euston, London, to Glasgow, Scotland on an inter-city train, with a whole coach booked by Bingo fanatics? Yep, that might work. There’s food and drink and company, and a smooth ride. But how to call the Bingo numbers? I doubt that the Steward would allow me to use the train’s announcement system- it might interfere with the usual announcements (“leaves on the line causing delay”). But I guess if we were all in one coach, my voice should be able to reach everyone- those trains are pretty well insulated against outside sound, except when going through a tunnel. And maybe the prizes could range from a free meal from the buffet, through to being elevated to First Class. But there might also be interruptions from passengers walking through the Bingo Coach, and the staff selling drinks and snacks. That’s the thing about Bingo- you do have to concentrate when playing live!
I flew this idea to my Bingo mates, and one suggested that it would be good to do it on the Orient Express (London to Austria, I think?). Someone then suggested that I call the numbers in the language of the country the train is travelling though. Hmmm... not sure I can count to 90 in more than one language- English! So perhaps that idea will hit the buffers.
Anyway, whether you are on a Bingo Cruise, or in more modest surroundings, perhaps playing online in your lounge, the very best of Bingo Luck to you!