Quiz Night Rules


In the absence of traditional trivia nights our lives do not have to be completely trivia-less. Check out QuizNightHQ’s guide to Isolation Trivia + Games. It contains plenty of ideas to get your friends, family and workplaces engaged in an online quiz night or online video fun.


Keep it simple and fun. Having minimal rules means you don’t have to bang on about what you can’t do and just get on with the night. People are attending to enjoy themselves or they’re there out of obligation so make the rules light-hearted.

Although it’s not a rule, it’s worth taking the time at the start of the night to mention the process in the case of a tie. This is outlined in greater detail in QuizNightHQ’s guide to Tie Breakers.


  1. No Mobile Phones
  2. The QuizMaster is Always Right
  3. Keep Your Voices Down
  4. Annoying Responses

No Mobile Phones

Make this fun by displaying devices that may help and that you definitely can’t use on the night. Then display some images of devices that won’t help, but that you also can’t use – e.g. toasters and gaming controllers. It’s not a fun one to remind people of so try to make light of it even though it is the most important rule.

Some Quiz Night organisers like to have a consequence for people who cheat by using their phones. Suggestions include:

  • an immediate $20 donation on being caught
  • deduction of points.

Others have suggested all phones need to be stacked in the middle of the table during rounds. All of these can work and it’s worth discussing this prior to the event.

A trust system may even be enough. Actually policing the use of phones is a pain and people are often using their phones during the night for sport scores, checking up on babysitting etc. Do you really want a confrontation with someone about whether they cheated or not…?

The type of questions you ask too can also change the way people are able to source answers. Using visual and audio questions prevents tables from being able to find questions on their phones. Check out some Table Questions or Trivia Question Rounds in Quiz Night HQ’s Marketplace for questions that are more difficult to find easily through the use of a phone.

Rule 2: The QuizMaster is always right

This is one you need to make clear but definitely play on it a little. Saying something along the lines of “even though my wife completely disagrees with this rule, I am always right.” Always mentioning that people are “welcome to discuss an answer with the QuizMaster if they think it could be incorrect but in the end we’ll be going with the answer that I have from multiple sources”. This is where it’s vital you double and triple-check your answers from multiple reliable sources; it’s well worth your time.

There doesn’t really NEED to be any other rules as that covers it but it can be worth including a couple of others for a bit of fun…

Rule 3: Keep your voices down

Don’t forget, it’s a competition which is worth encouraging. This creates a fun and engaging energy in the room and promoting this from the start gives attendees a sense of excitement – especially when they know the answer to a tough question.

Rule 4: If you don’t know the answer, make sure you offer up useless and annoying responses

This is the most enjoyable rule going round. This gives people licence to have fun and enjoy themselves. It’s a true pleasure hearing tables yell out ridiculous answers, particularly as the night goes on. It pays to say something like “it means you can have more fun and it will annoy those on your table that are very serious about trivia.” This regularly gets a laugh and breaks the ice with the crowd.

If you’ve found this article helpful or you have your own suggestion for a rule, comment below.