I have been using the regular Bicycle cards for years.
If you are reading this, then you’ve probably done the same (or at least you are familiar with them).
Bicycle cards are arguably the most common and most widely used playing cards in the world.
The quality is great, and they’re not that expensive, especially if bought in bulk.
They handle really well, too, and that’s why magicians use them as well.
Plus, there are dozens of fancy decks made by Bicycle. Black cards, limited edition decks, fake decks, creative colorful designs, and so on.
Bicycle bridge playing cards
So after years of using the regular decks, I purchased the narrower version out of curiosity.
I wanted to find out whether there are changes in the design, and if they handle differently, and if the quality is equally good.
So here it is — my review of Bicycle bridge cards, specifically red back.
Feel free to skip to the summary, otherwise keep reading. If you have any questions, or if you’d like to leave a comment, you can do so at the end of this page.
Alright, let’s begin.
Bicycle bridge: size
For those who don’t know, bridge cards are narrower.
Poker (regular) size playing cards measure 64 by 89 mm, while bridge size cards measure 57 by 89 mm. Technically, this is the only real difference.
So not much to explain here. Because they are narrower, Bicycle bridge cards are usually easier to shuffle, hold, and manipulate, but we’ll cover this later.
This was a pleasant surprise — I expected picture cards (jacks, queens, and kings) to basically look the same.
Instead, they look different, and in my opinion they’re actually more beautiful.
You can have a look at the images below, but in short these are the two main changes:
- Different colors. Well, same colors, but with a few touches of green. Based on the shade, it looks like yellow and blue mixed together. I think this makes the design more interesting.
- Better details. Not only are the cards narrow, which means the pictures are a bit smaller — there are smaller and better looking details as well. The design is more complex compared to standard Bicycles, and pleasing to the eye.
Index and pips
With the exception of clubs, pips are narrower. Not a huge difference, but it’s visible.
As for the index (numbers and letters, e.g. “K”), they are lighter. Again, have a look at the images and see for yourself. Index size is regular.
In terms of card spreads and fans, expect the same quality of a regular Bicycle deck. Very smooth, but not too slippery.
The narrower size makes it a little bit easier to hold them. You can hold fifteen or more bridge cards comfortably; it’s harder with regular size Bicycles.
As for magic and manipulation, some moves (especially one-handed cuts) will be easier if you have small hands.
For example, if you struggle to hold a packet of cards with your thumb, try doing it with the bridge size.
You’ll pay a little bit more, that’s all.
Here are some prices on a few different online stores, both in the US and in the UK. You can have a look at the table below to get an idea.
Prices refer to standard Bicycle playing cards, one deck.
Bicycle Bridge cards: final thoughts
A really nice addition to your collection. Pointy diamonds, spades, and hearts, and beautifully designed picture cards.
Ideal if you:
- Play bridge (you don’t say) or any game where you hold thirteen or more cards in your hand
- Like smaller or narrowed cards (they are kind of cute compared to regular size cards)
- Perform card manipulation and have small hands
If you use Bicycle decks, know that the quality is exactly the same — size and design are the only two differences.
Besides the price, which probably won’t be a significant difference depending on where you buy.
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, please leave a reply below 👇