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14 Reasons to Play UNO (Card Game) in Your Next Gathering!

Last Updated on January 7, 2024 by Gamesver Team and JC Franco

Friends having fun and playing a game of cards, Uno
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Any excuse is good enough to play a few hours of Uno, isn’t it? I certainly think so.

While playing a round or two at a family and friends gathering a few weeks ago, one of our guests asked if the game of Uno has any benefits attached. Chess was used as an example of a game that is fun but also has mental health benefits. I had not given the benefits and reasons of playing Uno much thought up until then, but right then and there, I started to wonder. What exactly are the benefits of playing the Uno card game?

With this in mind, it’s important to consider that Uno was designed by a family man, for his family. It stands to reason that as such, it is a great choice of entertainment for family and friend group gatherings. For those who have not tried the game before and want to know more about the benefits of playing it with the family or with friends, read on. 

I can tell you a multitude of reasons why I love playing Uno, but those aren’t always specifically beneficial reasons. I’d like to focus on the benefits for you and your family/friends. Why should you play Uno with family and friends? I will give you 14 great reasons:

14 reasons to play the card game Uno:

1. It’s fun.

Yup, it’s fun. In my opinion, this is more than enough reason to start playing Uno at every family event or friends gathering. Having something fun to pass the time is something we all want when attending a family gathering or even going away for a weekend with a group of friends. Regardless of how many times you play the game, it’s fun – always.

Uno cards in hand
Phaustov / Shutterstock.com

2. You can play it anywhere, anytime (no need for power).

Unlike computer and console games, there is no electricity required to play card games like Uno. You can play Uno at home, at a restaurant, at a hotel – anywhere really. Even if the lights go out and there is nothing else to do, light a candle and haul out the Uno cards. The time left in the dark will simply zoom by. 

3. Uno is a healthy alternative to TV and computer/tablet/console games.

Parents are always looking for ways to lure kids away from their devices. Sitting and watching television with family and friends can be seen as an anti-social thing to do. If you are looking for a game that can get the whole family off the couch or interest your entire friend’s group for an evening of laughter and chatter, Uno is it.

4. Playing Uno develops emotional intelligence in children.

If your family has a few children within it, chances are that you prefer to choose games that have an educational element or that offer some benefits to the kids in the group. Just like playing Chess develops strategic thinking, Uno develops emotional intelligence.

Children are encouraged to participate in friendly competition with the adults, in a safe environment when playing Uno. Children can develop emotionally by choosing to help another player out or learning to deal with the frustrations that come with losing (or things not going their way).

Young girl holding a UNO Junior card board game
AndreasNilssonSweden / Shutterstock.com

5. It promotes quick thinking and quick reactions/responses.

When a round of Uno is in full swing, absolutely everyone needs to be present and actively thinking about their next move. There is no telling what will happen next and how that will impact on their hand. Because of this, Uno can promote quick thinking, as well as quick reactions to what is happening in the game. These skills can be used in other stressful or difficult situations in other areas of life too.

6. Playing Uno teaches kids about fairness.

Again, this is a benefit for the kids in the group. Kids often do not understand the importance of fair play. By learning to take turns and also accepting that all the rules of play apply to them too and not just the adults, kids learn a valuable lesson in fairness.

7. Uno encourages healthy, light-hearted competition.

Competitiveness in the family is a great way to blow off some steam and create a sense of fun and excitement. There is no big prize up for grabs when you win at Uno, and a bit of light-hearted competition can do everyone some good. 

8. It provides a pressure-free opportunity to socialize.

Socializing, as a family or a group of friends, can feel awkward if there is nothing to do. Sitting around in a group chatting is an option, but why not incorporate a bit of fun and laughter? Socializing over an activity is a great way to create happy memories. Because the game is the focus, there is no pressure to talk about sensitive topics, and there is every reason for each family member or friend to feel like he/she fits in.

9. Playing Uno bridges the generational gap between family members.

Grandma and kid playing Uno
Sokor Space / Shutterstock.com

In family situations, there can be a big gap between the youngest and oldest members. Spending quality time with the older members can be difficult, especially for the younger kids. The Uno card game changes all of that, though.

Uno is extremely easy to play and can be enjoyed by the grandparents and the grandkids, all at the same time. Because young children and much older adults typically have very little in common, playing a game like Uno can bridge the generational gap and provide a scenario in which real relationship building is possible. 

10. It sharpens the mind.

A brain that is not worked becomes lazy. If you are looking for a game that boosts mental thinking patterns and keeps the mind sharp, Uno, as well as many other card games, are a great choice. Uno requires players to memorize rules and cards, to be vigilant of the moves happening in front of them, and to act quickly and strategically during play. All of this goes a long way towards sharpening the human mind and keeping mental health issues at bay. 

11. It provides an opportunity to interact and bond.

 In both friend and family groups, finding actual activities to bond over can be difficult. For some, tending a barbecue together is enough. For others, board games are the answer. For me, playing the Uno card game is the ultimate choice. While playing the game, I find that I have connected with other players on another level and that the light-hearted and fun atmosphere creates a prime situation for bonding and creating life-long fond memories. 

12. Uno provides hours of entertainment.

The typical Thanksgiving or Christmas gathering involves cooking, eating, exchanging gifts, and then spending a few hours in each other’s company. This can feel quite pressured if there is nothing to do. When I was young, we would all go outside and play a few games of Rounders, but since I have grown up and moved to an apartment, I believe that playing card games are a better way to pass the time. This means that everyone can get comfortable. The fun involved in the game ensures that the hours fly by in no time at all.

Illustration of family playing card games
Shutterstock.com

13. Playing Uno helps to strengthen family ties.

Playing a game of Uno brings up light-hearted rivalry and competition. Among family members, this type of conversation, rivalry, and competition can really help to strengthen family ties and ensure that members bond. There is a little saying I once heard that goes “a family that plays (games) together stays together” and I quite like that. 

14. Uno is for all ages.

Unlike games like Chess or Poker, the gameplay and rules of Uno are not difficult to grasp. Uno does not discriminate either. In fact, it is suitable for all ages, from 3 years old and upwards. The rules are extremely easy to learn, and everyone can enjoy a few rounds.

Need More Reasons?

With these 14 reasons why you should be playing Uno with friends and family, why don’t you already have your deck in hand, ready to play? You probably do not need more reasons to play Uno the next time you have a gathering. I certainly feel fired up for a round or two, but that is probably because the Uno bug bit many years ago.

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This article was co-authored by our team of in-house and freelance writers, and reviewed by our editors, who enjoy sharing their knowledge about their favorite games with others!

JC Franco
Editor | + posts

JC Franco serves as a New York-based editor for Gamesver. His interest for board games centers around chess, a pursuit he began in elementary school at the age of 9. Holding a Bachelor’s degree in Business from Mercyhurst University, JC brings a blend of business acumen and creative insight to his role. Beyond his editorial endeavors, he is a certified USPTA professional, imparting his knowledge in tennis to enthusiasts across the New York City Metropolitan area.