Creating a Pub Quiz

How to write a pub quiz is a question many of us may be asking, especially given that pub quizzes and trivia nights are very common nowadays. When you go pub hopping, you’ll see groups of friends enjoying quiz nights and having the time of their lives.

question marks

Britain takes quizzes so seriously that in television, these shows are usually given prime-time slots. Whether this is a matter of British pride or because quizzes are simply a tried and tested way to make pub nights (and life in general) more interesting, knowing what questions to ask is the first step to ensure that everyone has a grand time.


The brilliance of the educated guess


When you ask for tips on making a quiz that’s unforgettable, you should first remember that out of the million facts you can ask about, you need to choose the ones that will stimulate the brains of your audience. This is because our brains can only take so much information, and in quiz nights, it’s not so much that we absolutely know the answer to the question per se. The excitement comes from the fact that even if you do not know the exact fact that’s being asked, you somehow know enough related information, and that helps you make an educated guess.


This article highlights that people get a bigger sense of satisfaction when they make an educated guess and it turns out to be the right one. If you’re the one making the question, you should frame it in a way that taps on what’s familiar, and with enough clues for people to guess the answer.


General knowledge with a twist


Ideas for general knowledge questions are definitely needed when you’re making a pub quiz, because general knowledge is what pub quizzes are all about. But to make the quiz brilliant, you can frame the questions in to make them more unique. Here are some tips:


  • Talk to the young ones.

Kids and teens are a great source for pub quiz questions, because they know all about the current trends in the world of music, television, technology, and pop culture. More than being up to date about what’s current, talking to the young ones can give you questions you wouldn’t get elsewhere.


  • Options, options, options.

You can definitely ask open-ended questions, but having options makes life more interesting. The choices in a multiple-choice quiz will already sharpen their thinking and make life a little easier, but making it a 50/50 choice between 2 answers can make your quiz even more brilliant. Make sure you pick 2 choices that could BOTH be the right answer to the question, so that the group will have to think about it more and even “argue” with each other to fight for their answer.


  • Be creative and tap ALL senses.

A brilliant quiz forces people to use all their senses and not just their brains. For instance, you can play music and ask about the title, or missing lyrics, or even the decade when the song was released. You can also blindfold people and ask them to identify drinks (not necessarily alcoholic) or even slices of cheese. Use photos and videos. Use music. Make your quiz something they will never forget.


  • Nostalgia is your friend.

Nothing excites people more than those tip-of-the-tongue questions that tease their memory. It has to be something they might have known from long ago, so you can check your 5th-grade textbooks for this one. Picking questions that dwell on the pop culture of previous decades is also a sure fire way to get a few “awwwwwws”.


  • Pick questions that also inform.

People remember the questions that also give them information they’re grateful to suddenly know. Quiz nights not only entertain, they can also inform and educate, in the Reithlan tradition. So pick questions that give your audience amazing facts that they wouldn’t bump into on a normal day.



Something for everyone


When making a pub quiz, you can never predict who your audience will be, or what their personalities are. A brilliant quiz offers something for everyone, so this means you have to mix up your questions and provide enough variety in terms of categories. The categories you end up delving on usually reflect your personal interests, and this is okay as long as you mix it up for others. Yes you can definitely ask about current events, but you can also ask about television and movies, science, history, geography, sports, literature, and so many others.


How to write a pub quiz is a good question to ask because preparation is key to making your pub quiz brilliant and unforgettable. Just remember that pub quizzes are there for fun of it all, so you have to have fun making the quiz as well.