‘Jeopardy!’: These Wager Amounts Are Banned From the Game Show, Here’s Why

by Matthew Wilson
Photo credit: Scott Wintrow/Getty Images

Generally, “Jeopardy!” contestants can bet any amount of money within their disposal. But there are a few banned wagers on the game show.

According to Mental Floss, the shows’ production has banned five wager amounts on the show. The wager amounts are $69, $666, $14, $88, and $1488. For $69, the wager is banned due to its relation to sexual innuendo. Meanwhile, No. 666 has associations with satanism within the Christian doctrine. Meanwhile, some white supremacists groups have used 1488 as a racist symbol.

“Jeopardy!” banned the wagers due to their controversial nature. Production forbid contestants from making these wagers to avoid such associations. Otherwise, contestants can make any wagers they want. As long as they have the capital to back up their wagers.

‘Jeopardy!’ Champ Ken Jennings on Strategy

Meanwhile, “Jeopardy!” Champion Ken Jennings has some advice for potential “Jeopardy!” contestants. Jennings always practiced conservative wagers. You probably won’t see him throwing large quantities of cash at a Daily Double. And he encouraged fellow contestants to follow his tried and true method of wagering.

In fact, Jennings confessed he ultimately lost because he strayed from this formula. He wagered too high of a bet during a Daily Double. And that ultimately cost him the game when he got the question wrong. If he had been more conservative, he might have gone even farther on “Jeopardy!”

“I would say my recommended Jeopardy! strategy comes down to two things: at-home preparation, and conservative wagering. Watching the show religiously at home will help you see your strong and weak points, and what common areas of ‘Jeopardy!’ knowledge (world capitals, presidents, Shakespeare) you need to bone up on,” Jennings told the outlet. “But it also helps you try to internalize the timing of the famously tricky ‘Jeopardy!’ signaling devices. And I can’t say enough about not betting too much on Daily Doubles, if you’re happy with your position. In fact, I lost my last game because of two too-high Daily Double wagers.”

Jennings knows a bit what he’s talking about. The former contestant won 74 consecutive games, the longest in the game show’s history. Contestants can also ignore Jennings’ advice if they want and make wild bets. Although it doesn’t always work out. Really no wager is too much or too little except for the aforementioned five, which are off the “Jeopardy!” table for the foreseeable future.