Easily Plan a Trivia Night Happy Hour In-person or Virtual

Staying in can be nice if you pass the time doing things that bring people together and let you all have fun. Planning a trivia night happy hour or a virtual event can be just as time-consuming if not more than an in-person game. They can be pretty different, but both share almost all of the same characteristics, with the exception of coordinating the use of technology to interact and play the game if so desired.

In order to plan an easy to enjoy trivia night for yourself, friends, and family, you should account for the needs of the type of game you are planning. For a virtual happy hour, as an example, you will likely need to account for the technology, sites, and apps that may be used to play the game with friends remotely. Read this article to help you host your in-person or virtual trivia happy hour.

1. Choose Your Game Details for Trivia

In order to have a game in order, you must lay out the details of the game to ensure you account for what makes a trivia happy hour successful. The core component of what makes trivia games fun is their ease of play and participation. The ease of play is determined by a well-organized game. In order to accommodate an easily played game of happy hour trivia, it is essential to account for all the needs of your game.

a. Choose Your Trivia Games Themes

Picking themes helps drill down the categories of the questions and organize your questions by round. Tailor your questions that are best suited to your audience for the most fun.

b. Choose Your Trivia Question Categories

Your question categories should align with your theme. Choose categories that suit the theme and select the questions you will ask. This will help you organize the questions you will ask by round as the difficulty of the question and the point values should increase by round.

c. Create Rules For Your Trivia Game

Now that your theme and question categories align, now you can clearly define the rules of play. Use these rules for your happy hour to keep the game moving but also with enough content so that the game is not over too fast. Play multiple games rather than adding rounds. Adding rounds can quickly make the game boring. Include a prize to add incentive to play and increase the excitement of the game.

You can use the following rules for your game. Feel free to modify them by editing them with your own game details.

2. Create Trivia Questions For Your Game

Creating trivia questions can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. If you have time, you can do it yourself. It is actually a fun and interesting way to pass the time learning. If time is critical, there are a ton of tools out there you can use to help you by creating questions for you.

When I need questions quickly, I use Random Trivia Generator. Just select by your question categories and copy them to save them, or you can even use the tool live for a virtual game.

If you would like to use a trivia tool with more hosting features, there are a bunch of trivia hosting tools you can use, especially for virtual games. These tools usually come with pre-built questions and some even with a trivia game framework for you to use to coordinate your game.

If you want video chat during gameplay, there are trivia video apps that will allow you to play trivia while video chatting which adds another desirable social element if you are looking for a more exciting experience. I highly recommend using video chat services when you are hosting a virtual trivia happy hour.

3. Awarding Prizes To The Winners

Another part of trivia night that most hosts forget is people, love prizes. A $25 gift card goes further than you think as long as you are honestly awarding them to the winners. Awarding prizes to your winners adds a fun incentive for the players and will increase your level of participation

I like gift cards as a winners prize because, for $50, you can get two $25 Amazon gift cards and send them to the winner or award them in person. You can get a lot of people to play for real prizes. You don’t have to spend money, but it does add another element of excitement to the game which I believe is very important if you want to have a fun trivia happy hour.

4. Inviting Players To Your Trivia Happy Hour

Now that your trivia game is details are ironed out, you can invite players to join the game. Keep it simple. I like texting because it is very straight forward and I can keep track of people on my phone. If you prefer, you can use other social channels with invite tools, or send an email. Make sure, however, you invite other players, you include the pertinent game details so they know when to join the game, how to play, the rules, and details like prizes they can win if they participate.

Use this text example if you are going to invite friends from your phone and track their responses.

Text Example:


Hey everyone. I am hosting a virtual trivia night [insert time frame] and you are all invited! Please check for an email from me at [insert your sender email address] for details.


Use this email example if you prefer tracking email responses, using social channels, or invite tools to invite your friends.

Email Example:


Hey Friends!

On [insert date/ time] I am hosting a [insert theme] virtual trivia night. During this event, we will be playing trivia in teams and answering questions about [insert trivia question categories]. The game will last approximately [insert duration]. There will be a [insert prize] prize for the winning team!

Please use this link to join the game: [insert join link].

Here are the rules to the game [insert your defined game rules].

Please respond to this email by [insert RSVP date] and let me know if you can join us! I will be creating teams prior to this event, so it is important that you let me know ASAP! If you do not respond, I will assume you will NOT be joining.

I really do hope to see everyone there!

[Your Name]


5. Create Teams For Your Trivia Night Happy Hour

As people respond to your trivia invite, you can now create teams to put people into. Once you have grouped attendees into teams, choose or allow them to choose their trivia team name. Also, when you choose teams, make sure to make them even based on skill and question categories, or else the game will be dominated and that will make the game boring fast.

Use this example for email or text to give team names.

Email Example for Team Names:


Hey Friends!

[Insert recipient names], you are on team [insert team number]. Before the event, please create your team name and get back to me by [insert team name RSVP date]. Remember this is a [insert trivia theme] trivia night, so ideally, create a team name in line with the theme.

Looking forward to hearing what you come up with!

[Insert Your Name]


6. Have The Trivia Night Happy Hour

The day of the game comes and everyone joins the game. Start the game by introducing the night and explain the rules. Group the teams together and ask your questions. Track the scores and give score totals at the end of each few rounds. This is easily done if you organize your questions and apply point values by the number of each round. Make the questions progressively harder by round and increase the awarded points by round number.

Keep the game moving and have fun. The more fun you have, the more fun your attendees will have while playing with you. A quick pace of play also keeps the game from getting boring.

Once the game has completed, calculate the scores and announce the winners. Award prizes and make sure you do it in a timely manner. The winner should get the prize in person right away or mailed to them ASAP if they win the game.

Trivia Mastermind Editorial Team

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