There are a number of things to bear in mind when deciding how to run a pub quiz and although we can provide you with the questions, you have a number of options when deciding how to deliver it.
First thing to consider is how many people you are going to allow in each team. Some quizzes allow around 4 members per team, others allow as many contestants in each team as you like. Whatever you decide, it is important to make a decision and stick to it – and make sure you communicate it to your customers, so that there is no bickering about things being fair or unfair!
Secondly, what are your prizes going to be? And how much will you charge for entry? You can, for example, charge £1 per person, or £5 per team. I always think it is fairer to charge per person. What about prizes? Will you give prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd? Or just 1st? Will you be offering a cash prize, made up of the contestant contributions, or will your prize be drinks at the bar? If you choose this 2nd option, it is important to be specific about how much you are offering, and whether it needs to be drunk on the night or you will provide them tokens to be cashed in during the next week or so.
Do you want to set rules? One thing that causes a lot of consternation is the use of mobile phones, as people can text others for answers or look up answers on the internet. Again, it is your choice, but it is something to thing about.
At the end of each round you have the option to mark the quizzes yourself, or have a partner to do it for you, or get teams to mark each other’s papers as you read out the answers. It is often fairer to do it yourself, but because of the time this takes, most people opt for the latter option. If you do ask teams to mark their own papers, you need to decide whether to take in the marked papers or get teams to call out their scores. I would suggest the former, in the interest of fairness.
It makes life easier if you ask your teams to come up with a distinctive name at the beginning. If you have decided to allow teams to mark their own papers, you may need to get the teams to come and tell you their names before the pub quiz starts.
Some quizzes provide Joker cards. One card is given to each team at the beginning of each quiz and once you announce what the title of each round is going to be (you will need to do this at the beginning of each quiz if you choose this option), each team decides on which round they would like to ‘play their Joker’. They will get double points on this round.
If you want to use Jokers, there is a Ready Made set of Jokers to download below.
Most quizzes provide their picture round at the beginning of the quiz, to give the teams enough time to look at them and discuss them. This also gives them something to keep them busy during each break.
You also want to give your customers enough time to go to the bar during the quiz! Give a little time between each round and one larger break in the middle. Especially important if you have smokers who would like a little time to go outside for a cigarette.
Make sure you keep your contestants up to date on scoring. It adds to the feeling of suspense if people know how close (or not!) the scores are. I would suggest reading the scores in reverse order, announcing the team name and the number of points. If you are using Jokers, announce whether that team has already used their Joker or not.
There may seem to be a million things to think about, but if you’re not enjoying yourself then that will rub off on your customers. It has to be an enjoyable experience for all.