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How to run a Pub Quiz

Ten steps to having a succesful Trivia Quiz.

Please remember that we offer free 'ready-made' quizzes and lots of Christmas quiz questions to make writing your own pub quiz easy (or at least, easier)!

  1. 1.

    BEFORE THE QUIZ: The most important part is your quiz and trivia questions. Don't leave it until last minute to write/buy your quizzes and make sure the questions are setto suit your target audience. The level of the questions is of vital importance, too hard or easy may spoil the quiz for many people. Also don't underestimate how long it takes to write a good quiz... the hours will fly by!

  2. 2.

    PREPERATION: Make sure that you have answer and handout sheets - for answer sheets many quizzes simply use plain or lined paper which is then numbered by each team. Quizzers will need pens/pencils and spare paper to write their thoughts onto, or expected to bring their own, but a good quizmaster should atleast have enough supplies for the forgetful ones.

  3. 3.

    DECIDE ON TEAM SIZES: Try to aim for teams of four to six but often its not practical to be strict with this - it's supposed to be a fun night and excluding friends and families from playing due to numbers is not a good start. One ideais to allow teams of any size upto ten but only teams with 6 or 4 players are allowed to win the prizes (assuming there are some).

  4. 4.

    PRIZES: It's always more interesting if there's a prize. And even a runner's up prize or small prize for last place. Some quizzes charge a nominal entrant's fee of say a pound per player with the money given back as prize money.

  5. 5.

    TIMING: It’s important to know how long your quiz will run. A 80 question quiz will take not much longer than 2 hours. This should include a midway break.

  6. 6.

    THE QUIZ: Deciding on a regular and reliable quizmaster may be important for a weekly quiz. The personality of the quizmaster can go a long way to making a good quiz. When reading the questions remember to speak with a clear and loud voice, or better still use a reliable P.A. system. Be prepared to have to repeate questions! Allow about 20 seconds between questions. There may also be a handout or picture round which can be given at the start of the second session and handed in at the end of the quiz. Make sure everybody knows the ground rules and be especially stict on the use of mobile phones. Remember the quizmaster's decision is final.

  7. 7.

    MARKING: In many quizzes marking is achieved by swapping answer papers between teams and then reading out the answers. Be aware that this can only be done at the end of atleat a couple of rounds not to stop the flow of the quiz. If possible, allocate another person to mark all the answer sheets. Choose the points between rounds when you want to collect the answer sheets for marking. The score should be regularly read out or displayed. If you have a white board to display the scores, all the better.

  8. 8.

    BREAKS: Make time to always have a break for at least twenty minutes in the middle of the quiz, most of your teams will want one!

  9. 9.

    TIE BREAK QUESTIONS: It's important to have at least a couple of tie break questions handy, unless you've decided it's ok to have a joint winner. Good examples of tie break questions can be found on our 'Free Questions for a Quiz' page. For example:What was the length of the Titanic (in metres)?

  10. 10.

    CONTINUITY: Pub quizzes can bring in a great deal of welcome revenue to pubs on a regular basis. Hence, it's important to get things right to enjoy all the benefits of a successful regular quiz. A good quizmaster and consistently good quiz questions will go a long way to making your quiz night a success.