I have looked for some words in Scrabblewordfinder and Collins Dictionary. I found that in every pair like metre–meter, colour–color, defence–defense and so on, both words in each pair are usually considered legal and acceptable. So, according to both dictionaries, one can play either METRE or METER etc.

However, if a player on each his/her turn just always chooses randomly between BrE and AmE spelling, it is pretty weird. At least for me. It shows that the player is very inconsistent.

So my question is: if I am playing a game of Scrabble in English (but I am not an Englishman or an American, and I am not playing in United Kingdom or United States), which spelling should I prefer, British or American? Are there any common preferences or traditions? Thanks.

  • 4
    Pick the one that's most advantageous to you? It matters where the letters go.
    – Erik
    Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 11:30
  • 2
    If there is no other advantage of one over the other, then play the one that you think your opponent is most likely to challenge.
    – James
    Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 13:50
  • 2
    All alternative spellings are Scrabble legal. There ia no preference beyond game play considerations.
    – ryanyuyu
    Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 15:04

1 Answer 1


In my experience, the choice depends entirely on which spelling produces the largest score. I do occasionally play with people for whom the score is less important than the strife that can be stirred up, but even there, unexpected alternative spellings are rarely an important consideration. Blocking a desirable word is far more satisfying to the player for whom the annoyance of his fellows is the reason to play the game. So, which spelling should you prefer? I will go on record as saying that, if you play against me, the spelling you should use is that which gives me the best chance of a high-scoring riposte. Presumably that would also apply if you are playing against your relationship partner or someone you find desirable and who is very competitive. Otherwise, you should play as your conscience and your sense of self-respect dictate, and to the devil with the preferences or traditions of those whom you would trample into the dust of the board.

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