How to Play the Card Game Hola

By Dana Severson

Though it may sound a bit complicated on the first read, once you’ve actually played the game of Hola, it’s really quite simple. The first player plays a card and all other players must play a card of the same rank (or a wild card) to take control of the trick. But not all tricks are worth points, or even end after 4 cards have been played. Read through the directions of Hola a few times before playing, and you should be able to tackle this enjoyable card game for four with ease.

Decide teams with partners sitting across the table from one another.

Deal out the deck until all players have a total of four cards in hand.

Lay a card, starting with the person to the dealer’s left. You may play any card you like but you are looking to gain tricks with points. The only points available come from aces and 10s. Each is worth 10 points. To beat a card, it must be of the same rank, not the same suit. If the first player leads an 8, the next player would need to lay another 8 to take control of the trick. The playing of a higher card does nothing but act as if the player has chosen to “throw off.” Of course, there is another way to take control of any trick—to play a wild card. Wild cards are 2s and 7s.

Continue any trick on the table. If you’re the player who laid the first card of the trick, you may choose to continue the trick by playing another card on top of it. This card must be of the same rank or a wild card (which acts as the same rank). Every other player is now committed to playing another card.

Win the trick when you are the last player to lay a card of the same rank (or a wild card). This will happen when the player who led the first card is unable to lay another card. The winner of this trick leads the next card.

Draw another 4 cards once all 4 cards in each player’s hand have been played.

Continue to play 4 cards in a hand at a time until the deck is exhausted.

Win the game of Hola by having the highest score when the deck is exhausted. Remember that the only cards worth points are the aces and the 10s.

About the Author

Based in Minneapolis, Minn., Dana Severson has been writing marketing materials for small-to-mid-sized businesses since 2005. Prior to this, Severson worked as a manager of business development for a marketing company, developing targeted marketing campaigns for Big G, Betty Crocker and Pillsbury, among others.