Ready, set, let’s play Rummy!

Be sure to have something to keep score; play while conversing, getting to know other players in a light-hearted environment



Rummy may seem like a complicated game, but the more you play the easier it gets.


Rummy is a perfect game to play on a chill afternoon. It incorporates a little strategy while being light enough to have an in-depth conversation. This game needs two or more people, a way to keep score and a deck of cards.

To set up the game, choose a dealer. The role of the dealer will move to the left after every hand. This person shuffles and gives each individual seven cards to start. The remainder of the cards goes into the center as the draw pile.

One card is turned over from the draw pile to start the discard pile. The goal of each hand is to “go out” by being the first person to get rid of all their cards. The goal of the game is to be the first to reach 1,000 points if time permits.

The person to the left of the dealer begins play. They can choose to draw either one card from the draw pile or a card from the discard pile. If there were more cards in the discard pile, they could draw any number of the cards as long as they can play the last card in the pile in that turn. If they can’t, then they can only pick the card off the top of the discard pile.

After drawing, a person can choose to pass or to play their cards. A person can play if they have three or more of a number or three or more cards in a straight. Straights must be in the same suit. Players can decide before the game starts whether they are going to allow wraps, where a straight goes from queen to king to ace to two.

My family usually prohibits wrapping. If a player is able to place cards down but doesn’t want to, they are not obligated to. That is up to their strategic discernment. The last decision in a person’s turn is which card to discard. Players must discard to end their turns.

Once someone goes out, players must count the points they have earned in the round. Points can only be earned on cards that have been placed down in front of a player. Cards still in one’s hand cancel outplayed points.

All cards 2 to 9 are five points each. Cards 10 to the king are 10 points each, and aces are worth 15 points. If I were to have a set of three fives in front of me and one ace in my hand, I would end the hand with zero points.

I love this game because it can be played while having a conversation and learning about others. My family likes to play this game in order to kill time while waiting for dinner and on family vacations.

If you have played this game before or plan to in the future, comment on your experiences below!