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How To Play Continental Rummy(Rules & Scoring)

by Team Taj Rummy
How To Play Continental Rummy(Rules & Scoring)

Are you looking for a fun and competitive card game to play with family and friends? Look no further than Continental Rummy! This classic rummy-style game has been around since the early 1920s and is easy to learn and play. With its simple rules, fast pace, and exciting hands, it’s no wonder why this game has been so popular for almost a century! In this article, we’ll be exploring how to play Continental Rummy, as well as the rules and scoring associated with it. So grab your decks of cards, get comfortable, and let’s dive into the world of Continental Rummy!

What is Continental Rummy

Continental Rummy is traditionally played with two or four players using two standard decks of 52 cards each. The goal is to be the first player to meld all their cards into sets or runs. Sets are three or four of a kind (e.g., four kings), while runs are three or more consecutive numbers in the same suit (e.g., 4-5-6 of diamonds).

During gameplay, players draw from either an open pile or a discard pile to build their hands into sets or runs, which they can then meld onto the table. Every turn, players have the option to draw a card, discard a card, or meld sets/runs onto the table. When one player successfully melds all their cards, they win that round!

How to Play Continental Rummy

Playing Continental is easy! To start, each player will be dealt a certain amount of cards. The number of cards dealt depends on the number of players:

  • For 2 players: Each player is dealt 12 cards.
  • For 3 or 4 players: Each player is dealt 10 cards.
  • For 5 or more players: Each player is dealt 9 cards.

The remaining cards form the draw pile, and the top card is turned face-up to start the discard pile. Then comes the rounds – in every round, players can lay down sets or sequences and draw more cards from either the deck or their opponents’ hands.

Keep playing until all your cards are gone – the one with the least points at that point wins.


To start a game of Continental Rummy, you’ll need to deal out the cards. Once all players have received their cards, it’s time to select a dealer. This person will be responsible for dealing the cards, which shifts each round.

When counting the cards dealt, make sure that everyone gets the same amount. If not, the dealer should fix the mistake before proceeding with the game. After verifying the distribution of the cards, the dealer can begin playing.

Also Read: How To Play Shanghai Rummy


Once everyone is dealt their cards, the round can begin as you take turns playing your cards. In most card games, each player has a hand of five to seven cards at any given time. If needed, additional cards can be drawn from the deck until all players have enough cards.

The number of players in the game will determine its length and complexity. For example, two-player games are typically shorter than four-player games. Variations may also alter gameplay for different numbers of players or even certain rules, like how many tricks need to be taken before a winner is determined.

After each turn, players must discard one card into the discard pile, which is then used by other players during their turns. Players can also draw cards from this pile if necessary. This process continues until one player has no more cards or all the tricks have been taken.

Rules of Continental Rummy

You’ll need to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of Continental Rummy in order to master it – from the types of melds you can make to the scoring system used.

Let’s start by discussing the rules for drawing cards: each player starts their turn by either drawing a card from the stockpile or discarding any one card from their hand. If they choose to take a card from the discard pile, then they must also pick up all the cards that were discarded before it.

Next are the discarding rules: after drawing a card, players must discard one card onto the discard pile and end their turn. This discarded card should not be part of a completed sequence or set, as this would constitute an illegal move according to Continental Rummy rules.

Tricks are allowed but optional. These tricks involve playing multiple sets and sequences during your turn, which, if successful, award extra points at the game’s end.

Finally, let’s discuss wild cards and jokers: wild cards can be used as substitutes for any other single rank (e.g., 3♣ can substitute for a 3♥). Jokers behave similarly – they may represent any rank – however, there is only one Joker per deck, so use them strategically! When using jokers in combination with other cards, ensure that you have enough natural cards present on both sides of the joker(s) in order to avoid being penalized later down the line.

Knowing how to utilize these special cards properly will give you an edge over your opponents when playing Continental Rummy!

Also Read: How To Play Dummy Rummy

Score Sheet & Points in Continental Rummy

Keep track of your progress by jotting down the points you’ve earned throughout the game – it’s a great way to stay ahead of the competition!

When playing Continental Rummy, each player should have their own score sheet in order to keep track of how many points they’ve won or lost. The score sheet is divided into Hand Rankings, Winning Strategies, and Point Values; these categories are key components when calculating who has won at the end of each round.

Hand Rankings refer to combinations that can be made with seven cards dealt among players during gameplay. These include straights, full houses, and flushes, which all add up according to predetermined point values listed on the score sheet. This is important for tracking exactly what value each hand brings to gameplay and facilitating an accurate tallying of total scores at the end of each round.

Additionally, players must pay attention to other aspects, such as Discard Piles and Common Mistakes associated with making incorrect moves.

Strategic winning strategies often involve careful consideration of available options, including discarding certain cards in favor of others, which could potentially lead to higher-scoring hands. It’s also important not to make mistakes while counting up points, as this can negatively impact outcomes and drastically affect final tallies.

Keeping a detailed record of all accumulated points allows players to better understand their current standings in any given game while simultaneously avoiding costly errors.

Also Read: How To Play Knock Rummy


Knowing the different hands in Continental Rummy is key to winning, so make sure you brush up on them before getting started! The deck variations are dependent on how many people are playing and which version of Continental Rummy you’re playing.

The standard set has two decks with 104 cards total: two jokers, four aces, and 98 numbered cards from 2-10.

When there are more than eight players involved, an additional deck may be added to accommodate the extra players.

Your drawing strategy should factor in the type of hand you’d like to collect throughout the game—this could include runs or sets.

Discarding tactics also come into play as far as whether you keep certain cards or not; if there’s a card that isn’t helping your current situation, it might be wise to discard it instead of keeping it around until its usefulness becomes obsolete.

Winning combinations involve collecting three similar types of cards, such as a run (three sequential numbers) or a set (three same number/face value).

Set collecting is important since some versions allow for bonuses when someone collects all nine sets first.

Players can also go out by discarding their last card after melding all their other ones onto the table.

Knowing these rules will give you an advantage over fellow players, so study up!

Also Read: How To Play Contract Rummy

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the best strategy for winning a game of Continental Rummy?

Winning at Continental Rummy requires a combination of drawing techniques, strategic use of wild cards, discarding rules, and point systems to maximize your chances. Furthermore, bankroll management is important to keep losses low and profits high. Knowing when to draw or discard can be the difference between winning and losing a game.

  1. What is the difference between Continental Rummy and other rummy card games?

Continental Rummy is a card game that combines elements of rummy, trick-taking and set collecting. It differs from other variations of rummy in its Wildcards Rules, Draws & Discards, Trick-Taking, and Set Collecting mechanics. Additionally, players can change hands during the game by swapping their cards with another player’s hand. These unique rules make Continental Rummy an exciting and interesting game to play!

  1. How many players can play Continental Rummy?

Continental Rummy is a multiplayer card game that can be played with 2-6 players. The game involves skill and luck as players count cards, analyze hands, take tricks, and develop strategies to win the pot. It combines elements of trick-taking games and rummy-style play for an exciting gaming experience.

  1. How long does a game of Continental Rummy typically last?

A game of Continental Rummy typically takes 30 minutes to an hour. Players start by drawing cards and then form sets or runs using the same suit, discarding any extra cards they don’t need. Once a player has no more available sets or runs in their hand, they can lay off on other players’ combinations. Finally, points are counted based on how many cards each player has at the end of the game, and the winner is declared.

  1. Are there any variations or variants to Continental Rummy?

Continental Rummy has several variations, including drawing cards at the start of a hand, using wild cards in the deck, changing discarding rules to include face-up discard piles or multiple hands per round, varying the number of cards in each player’s hand (for example, from 7 to 13), and adjusting timing rules for when players must draw or discard.


Playing Continental Rummy is a great way to enjoy some card-playing fun with friends and family. With its unique rules, scoring system, and hands, it provides plenty of opportunities for strategic play.

Knowing the basics, like how to play, the rules, and the score sheet will help you get started and become an expert in no time. Whether you’re playing casually or competitively, understanding all the details about Continental Rummy play rules and scoring will give you a distinct advantage over your opponents. So grab some cards and start playing today!

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