- 2-5 players.
- Ages 8 and up.
- Ticket to Ride board game with all the accessories;
- The board map
- 5 sets of 45 colored train cars: blue, green, black, and yellow
- 5 of each color – wooden scoring markers
- 144 illustrated cards
Additional Setup Notes
- Place the map board on the table or the center of the space you are playing in.
- Let each player select their color, pick up the corresponding scoring marker, and exactly 45 colored train car pieces.
- Shuffle the Train Car Cards.
- Deal a starting hand: Four cards per player.
- Place the deck on the side and turn five cards face-up.
- Shuffle the Destination Tickets and give three cards to each player.
- Each player must keep at least two Destination Tickets, but can keep all three.
- Keep your Destination Tickets a secret!
- Place all scoring markers at the bottom left of the board in the Scoring Track numbered 100.
- You are ready to start playing! Refer this Ticket to Ride rulebook for more information.
Each turn, players must perform one of these actions:
- Draw Two Train Car Cards: Take either one of the face-up cards or perform a blind draw by taking the top card from the deck. If you draw a face-up card, remember to replace it with another one from the deck. Repeat the same process twice.
- Draw Destination Tickets: Take three Destination Tickets from the top of the deck. Keep at least one card, two, or all three. Discarded cards are placed on the bottom of the deck.
- Claim a Route: Claim a route on the board by playing a set of Train Car cards that match the color and length of the route. Place one of your colored trains on each space of the route. Record your score by moving your Scoring Marker to the correct number of spaces (refer to the Route Scoring Table) along the Scoring Track.
Train Car Cards
There are eight different Train Car Cards, as well as Locomotive cars. There are 8 types of regular Train Car cards, plus Locomotive cars. These cards are matched with routes between cities:
Locomotives are multi-colored wild cards. They can be part of any set of cards when you claim a route. If a Locomotive card is one of the five face-up cards, you can only draw one. If, after having drawn one card the replacement card is a Locomotive, the player cannot take it. If three of the five face-up cards are Locomotives, all five cards are discarded, and five new ones will replace them.
If you get a Locomotive from the top of the deck in a blind draw, it counts as a single card, and you can draw a total of two cards that turn.
If you run out of cards, just shuffle the discarded ones again thoroughly and continue.
How to Claim a Route
Play a set of cards equal to the number of spaces in the route. They have to be the same type, for instance, a Red route can only be claimed with the same-color Passenger Car cards. Gray routes are an exception, and they can be claimed with cards of any one color. You can claim any open route on the board, but only a maximum of one route connecting two cities.
Players claim routes by placing their plastic train pieces in each of the spaces of the route. Discard the cards you used to claim the route right after.
Destination Ticket Cards
Each turn, you can draw Destination Ticket cards if you wish, taking three cards from the Destination Ticket Deck. Keep at least one, but up to three.
Each Destination Ticket details two cities on the map and a Point Value. If you manage to complete a series of routes that connect the two cities, you can add the Point Value indicated on the card. However, if you fail, you have to deduct that number from your points.
Destination Tickets are kept secret until final scoring.
Points can be scored by:
- Claiming a Route between two cities on the map.
- Completing a Continuous Path of routes between two cities listed on your Destination Ticket(s).
- Completing the Longest Continuous Path of Routes.
You get points by how many train cars you were able to place on the route: 1, 2, 4, 7, 10, and a maximum of 15. You will then use your score marker to record how many you got each turn.
Note that you will lose points if you fail to complete the route given by your Destination Ticket(s).
Calculating final scoring:
Once the game comes to an end, you will calculate the final scores for each player by adding or subtracting their Destination Ticket cards from their score, depending on whether they managed to complete the routes on those cards or not.
Strategy & Tips
Start with Short Routes
One of the best strategies to win a game of Ticket to Ride is to keep the two shortest routes when you draw your initial tickets. If you complete short routes as fast as possible, you avoid losing points. After completing the short routes, go after the long ones to maximize your score.
Let’s walk through a typical Ticket to Ride gameplay with three players.
- Three players gather around the Ticket to Ride game board.
- The players set up the board, the cards, and select the color they’re playing with.
- The players deal the cards, now they’re ready to begin.
- Player three is the most experienced traveler so they go first.
- They claim the route between Montreal and New York, scoring three points.
- Player one goes next, claiming San Francisco to Salt Lake City, getting five points.
- The gameplay continues until player two only has a single train car left, prompting the final round.
- The game ends, and upon calculating scores, player three has the highest score and wins the game.
How many people can play?
You can play Ticket to Ride with up to five players.
Can you shorten a game of Ticket to Ride?
You can adjust the rules to end the game once one of the players has five train cars left instead of zero, one, or two.
How long does a Ticket to Ride game last?
On average, the gameplay lasts 30-60 minutes.