OBJECTIVE OF FLIP CUP: Drink and flip all of your team’s cups before the opposing team

NUMBER OF PLAYERS: 6-12 players

MATERIALS OF FLIP CUP: 1 Solo cup per player filled all of the way up with beer, 1 long table, (optional) shot of liquor per player

TYPE OF GAME: Drinking Game

AUDIENCE: Ages 21+


Flip Cup rules

If you’ve ever been to a house party or bachelor party, you have likely seen groups frantically flicking cups on a table. No, they are not crazy. Yes, they are probably a bit drunk, but they are actually playing a classic drinking game. This super fun drinking game has had many names over the years, including “taps,” “canoe,” or “flippy cup.” We’ll keep it simple today and call it flip cup.

Flip Cup is a relay race-style game where the object is to finish your drink and flip your cup before your opponents. In this article, we’ll go over the setup and rules of the flip cup game, as well as anything else you might need to add this gem to your drinking game repertoire.



The beauty of flip cup is that you need very few materials. It is one of the many drinking games you can play without cards. For the setup, you will need 1 Solo cup per player filled equally with your beverage of choice. If you plan on playing multiple rounds, it is best to play with beer. You will also need a long table and two teams with an equal number of players. A beer pong table can work great.

One team will stand along one side of the table, and the opposing team across from them. Each player should have a full cup before them and be facing an opponent.


An optional addition to the game is also to add a shot of liquor to the mix. On their turn, each player must take the shot, drink the beer, and then flip the cup.


It is usually good etiquette for everyone to “cheers” their opponent before the start of the game, but this is not mandatory. Decide which end of the table will go first, and countdown from 3. Flip Cup isn’t an overly complex game, but there are still some rules you need to know.

The two players on the same end of the table will start the game. They must finish their drinks and set their cups for the flip. 

Take your empty cup and set it face up on the side of the table, hanging slightly off the edge. You must then tap the bottom of your cup, get it to flip 180 degrees, and land it open face down in one motion. If you fail, then you must reset your cup and try again. 

One important rule is that only one hand can touch the cup when attempting to flip it. There’s no steadying with your other hand. There’s no limit to how many attempts. You must keep going until you flip it.

Only once you have successfully flipped, can the next player on your team begin drinking, relay race style. This continues down the line till the last player.


The game ends when one team has finished and flipped all of their cups successfully! Remember that it’s an automatic disqualification if you drink or flip your cup out of turn.

A good thing to note is that this is a relay race. That means the other team is not waiting for you to flip your cup; Only your teammates are. If it happens that you are taking too long, the other team may win, unless they are taking long too!


Flip cup might seem like a game of sheer luck, but that could not be further from the truth. Here are a few tips you can implement now to become a better flip cup player. 


You’ve heard it before: practice makes perfect, and it’s true for flip cup, too. While it may seem that flipping a cup is the easiest thing in the world, believe us, it’s not! Grab yourself a solo cup and set it on the edge of the table to practice your flipping technique. This will help you dial in your technique so you can blow the competition out of the water. 

However, it is good to remember that you can not control the conditions of the game. Sometimes, the table will be wet, affecting the cup’s behavior. Or perhaps the cups are a different brand and may be heavier or lighter than the ones you’re used to. Try and get a few practice flips before the game starts so you can adjust your strategy. Or you can play other games that require flipping too, such as chandelier. Otherwise, you can train yourself to be better at drinking games in general with any of the beer Olympics games!


This is the most critical part of this game. Anybody can chug their drink quickly. The flipping is the part that can make or break your team. If you can get the cup to rotate only once, you have a better chance of it landing the way you want it to. The more rotations the cup does in the air, the harder it is to control. Tap the cup ever so lightly so that it does a small flip and lands face down. 

You can adjust your sensitivity as you play. If you see that the cup is going too high in the air, then tap a bit lighter. If your cup isn’t moving up at all, then tap a little harder. This is definitely a game that you get the hang of more quickly when you actually play.


This is the tip that can help you the most during your next game. Take your time!

It is so easy to get flustered during a game. It will be loud, you will be nervous, and maybe even a bit tipsy. This can really mess you up and make you panic. Take a moment, breathe, and reset yourself. Yes, we know that this is a race, but we promise this will help tremendously. You will do much better if you take your time to flip carefully. 


  • Batavia Downs is slightly different from the classic version of the game. It requires a circular table and at least 4 players. Players stand opposite each other and begin simultaneously drinking.  As players finish their drinks and successfully flip their cups, the turn passes to the person to their right (counterclockwise). After a flip, players refill their cups, so if the player to their left flips successfully, they are ready to go again. This continues until someone cannot flip their cup before the person to their left flips theirs.
  • Survivor Flip Cup rules are almost exactly like the original game, but after a team loses a round, they vote off a member. However, they are still required to drink the same number of cups as their opponents. So, a player must be picked to drink and flip an extra cup.
Alan Lemus

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