A unit of play in bridge is called a rubber. To win a rubber you and your partner have to score two games. This will earn you a rubber bonus of 700 if you opponents have not yet scored a game, or 500 if they have.

After you have scored your first game you are said to be vulnerable. Being vulnerable will increase you scores for the second game, but also raise the penalties for not fulfilling a contract.

Trick scores

If you and your partner make a contract you get a trick score for each trick you win after the first six. The amount of points depends on the strain: So, if you make two notrump, you would get a trick score of 70, two hearts would get you 60 and two diamonds with two overtricks would earn you 80.


In order to score a game you have to score at least 100 points in one deal ore more. Only tricks contracted for during the bidding counts toward the game score (this is to promote good bidding). Overtricks will still count towards your total score but not towards the 100 points you need.

It's pretty obvious that it's good to score your games as fast as possible. In order to score a game in one deal, you have to bid and make at least three notrump, four hearts, four spades, five diamonds or five clubs. These are called game contracts.


If you bid and make a contract of six of any strain, you have a small slam. This will earn you a bonus of 500 if you are non-vulnerable and 750 if you are vulnerable. A contract of seven is a grand slam and gives a bonus of 1000 and 1500 respectively.

This slam bonus is not affected by doubling or redoubling.

Doubling and redoubling

If you make a contract that has been doubled, the trick score is doubled. This counts towards the 100 points you need to score a game (i.e. a contract of two spades is enough since it would earn you 120 points). You also get a bonus of 50 points. Overtricks are worth 100 points regardless of strain; if you are vulnerable they are worth 200 points.

If you make a redoubled contract the bonuses are doubled yet again. Needless to say, this will result in a quite heavy score if you make the contract.


If you do not make the contract, you will get penalized. That is, you will get no points, but your opponents will get a score which depends on the number of tricks you failed to win, if you are vulnerable and if the contract was doubled or redoubled.
  • Not vulnerable - 50 points per trick.
  • Vulnerable - 100 points per trick.
  • Not vulnerable doubled - 100 points for the first trick, 200 for the rest.
  • Vulnerable doubled - 200 points for the first trick, 300 for the rest.
  • Not vulnerable redoubled - 200 points for the first trick, 400 for the rest.
  • Vulnerable redoubled - 400 points for the first trick, 600 for the rest.
So, if you bid four hearts (vulnerable) but only manage to win eight tricks (you need ten), your opponents would get 200 points, or 500 if the contract had been doubled.

Honor Bonus

You get an extra bonus of 100 points if you hold four of the honors (ace, king, queen, jack or ten) in trumps. If you have all five the bonus is increased to 150. In the same manner a player who holds all four aces when the contract is notrump earns a bonus of 150 points. These bonuses do not count toward the 100 points you need to score a game.


In tournament play it's more common to play for International Match Points (IMP) instead of rubbers. You get no bonuses for honors or rubbers but instead get a bonus when you score a match. Also, it is ofter pretermined which deals are vulnerable and which are not.