Pin It

This article covers scoring in duplicate bridge and Chicago style bridge.  Rubber Bridge is a common kitchen table version of bridge.  Click here for an article on Rubber Bridge Scoring.  

The points you earn on a hand depend on the strain of the contract.


Points per Trick
starting with the 7th trick

Tricks for Game

Game Level

Minors: ♣ or



5♣ or 5

Majors: or ♠



4 or 4♠


40 for the 7th trick
30 for subsequent tricks



The key learning points for newer players regarding bridge scoring are:

  1. Major suits and notrump are more attractive strains than minor suits because

    1. each trick earns more points

    2. fewer tricks are required for game

  2. Certain contracts offer a game bonus (3NT, 4, 4♠, 5♣, 5). You should strive to earn the game bonus by bidding to the game level in your strain and winning the required number of tricks.

As you progress, you will want to consider the following:

  1. On some boards your side will have more strength and should expect a positive score. Your opponents may try to win the auction in their suit, hoping to prevent you from earning the points you deserve. When they do, you should strongly consider penalizing your opponents. See the discussion of doubles towards the end of this article.

  2. If you expect to win 12 tricks (all but one trick) or 13 tricks (all the tricks), you can earn a Small Slam bonus (6-level contract), or a Grand Slam bonus (7-level contract). Since it can be difficult to determine if 12 tricks (or 13 tricks) are available, we recommend delaying focusing on bidding slams until you have more experience.

Bridge Scoring Details

You earn 50 points for making a contract. Additionally, you earn the strain’s point per trick for each trick beginning with the 7th trick. You don’t earn any trick points for the first 6 tricks. You need to make you contract in order to earn trick points and earn the 50 point bonus for making your contract.

For example, if you contract for 2♠ (8 tricks with spades as trump) and you win 9 tricks, you earn 140 points.
30 points per trick for the 7
th through 9th tricks (3 x 30 = 90) + a 50 point bonus for making your contract = 140

If your contract is below the tricks required for game in your chosen strain, your score depends only on the tricks you win, not the level of your contract. Taking 9 tricks in a 1♠ contract earns the same 140 points that winning 9 tricks in a 2♠ or 3♠ contract earns. However, there is more risk in a 3♠ contract. If you fail to make the 9 tricks required for a 3-level contract., your opponents earn points for defeating your contract. If your contract was 1♠ or 2♠ and you win 8 tricks, you make your contract and earn 110 points (50 + 30 x 2).

Certain contracts earn bonus points. Each strain has a level required for a game bonus. If you contract at the game level or higher and make your contract (win 6 + the contract level tricks), you earn the game bonus. The non-vulneraable game bonus is 250 points.

For example, a 4♠ contract earns a game bonus if you win the required 10 tricks (4 level contract + 6 tricks). If you bid 4♠ and win 10 tricks, you earn 432 points (30 x 4 for the 7th through 10th tricks + 250 game bonus).

You need to bid to the game level and make your contract to earn the game bonus. Contracts below the game level are called Partscore contracts. Makng a partscore contract earns a 50 point bonus even if you win all the tricks.

If you contract at the 6-level (12 tricks requires) or the 7-level (all 13 tricks required), you earn a slam bonus. Making a 6-level contract is called a Small Slam. Making a 7-level contract is called a Grand Slam.

If you fail to make your non-vulnerable contract, your opponents earn 50 points for each undertrick (each trick less than the tricks required to make your contract).

Vulnerability is specified for each board you play. Half the time you will be vulnerable and half the time you will be vulnerable. So far, we focused on the non-vulnerable game and slam bonuses. The bonuses are higher if you are vulnerable. Similarly, the cost of failing to make your contract is higher.




Game Bonus



Small Slam Bonus (12 tricks)



Grand Slam Bonus (13 tricks)



Under Trick Penalty



During the auction, you can double your opponents contract. If the opponents double your contract, you have the option of redoubling. Doubling and redoubling increases the reward for making a contract and the cost of failing to make your contract.




Bonus for making contract



Points per Trick (up to contract level)

Multiply by 2

Multiply by 4

Points per overtrick

100 if non-vulnerable
200 if vulnerable

200 if non-vulnerable
400 if vulnerable

Game Bonus Threshold

2, 2♠, 2NT, 3♣, 3

1, 1♠, 1NT, 2♣, 2

The cost of undertricks is higher for doubled contracts and redoubled contracts.


Doubled NV

Doubled V














-300 per trick

-300 per trick