Is there a time limit for each person to make their move?

My wife (a scientist) is very analytical, always strategising (which is why she beats me most times) but she can take upwards of 4 minutes to make a single move (deciding what cards to take or what or where to build) and it drives me nuts!

Is there any rule or etiquette that says people should be quicker about their moves, say 60 seconds or less?

  • 6
    What you are describing is often called Analysis Paralysis and is a very controversial subject, particularly among those who have it.
    – hymie
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 16:00
  • My personal etiquette would be that nearly every turn in TTR should be less than 30 seconds, ideally even half that... that said it's a classic "gateway" game for folks new to strategy games, so I wouldn't push others unless they were quite egregious. Speed is part of the social contract and both playing too fast and playing too slow can deter people's enjoyment.
    – tdhsmith
    Commented Dec 12, 2019 at 23:46

4 Answers 4


There is no time limit for each turn and etiquette for turn length depends on the group that you are playing in. The best suggestion that I can make for you is to remind your wife that she can start planning her next turn while others are playing. While things will change based on other players move not every action they take is going to impact her choice.

But one thing to remember that based on the game the actions of the previous player can drastically change what you are planning to do and games can last 1-2+ hours so this is not a quick game.

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    Whilst I agree that encouraging planning when its not your turn is good practice in all games I'm not sure I've ever known TTR go in at over 2 hours? Commented Oct 1, 2018 at 8:31

There's no time limits in the rules.

In the online version of the game, one can set an amount of time per player. Even 7 minutes per player (total, for the entire game including time spent choosing tickets) is sufficient for experienced players, and 15 minutes per player is quite comfortable. The whole game shouldn't take longer than that. If it does, and if it's not pleasant for you, maybe Interpersonal Skills Stack Exchange is the place for you to visit.

  • 1
    Don't think I have ever had a game with that little time spent per player
    – Joe W
    Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 0:24
  • Tens of thousands do everyday on the digital version --one literally gets kicked out after the aloted time runs out-- and that's on par with my experience with the tabletop version
    – ikegami
    Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 0:52
  • It's always clear when a turn is done, and most turns consist of taking two cards, an action taking seconds, and you get what... 40 turns? That gives you 14 one-minute turns, which is more than enough time for planning (especially since you can plan whole others are taking their turns too!) That's 40 minutes of just thinking (assuming 4+ players, and allowing for them not taking as long as you do).
    – ikegami
    Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 1:50
  • 1
    I have never played multiplayer in the digital version and honestly I find games generally run faster in the digital versions then they do in the physical ones
    – Joe W
    Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 2:07
  • Noone I know needs 40 minutes to think on the tabletop version either. If you're socializing instead of playing, fine, but you get the OP's problem if everyone's not on the same page about this. Thus both of our answer suggesting that this is an interpersonal problem.
    – ikegami
    Commented Sep 30, 2018 at 23:59

Have you considered a chess clock? (Multiplayer clocks/apps exist if you play more than 2 player).

Each player gets a fixed amount of time they are allowed to use per game. You can penalise them points for each minute they go over, so they have to evaluate using that extra time against the potential points swing.

Your wife may find this to be a fun extra rule in the game, however it could also ruin the game for her. But you could try...

  • I am not sure that just adding a clock would solve the underlying issues.
    – Joe W
    Commented Oct 1, 2018 at 16:40
  • 1
    If there's more than two people in the game, a chess clock wouldn't work. But there's probably smart phone apps for multiplayer versions. Another issue would be whether to separate out decision time from action time (e.g. time placing your train cars). Commented Oct 1, 2018 at 16:41
  • It should also be noted that in a physical game the time it takes to play the trains on the board could be longer for some players causing them to have less overall time.
    – Joe W
    Commented Oct 1, 2018 at 21:32
  • @JoeW I don't see why time taken to play trains will vary much between players. Everyone is trying to get rid of all their trains. I can't think of any scenario where it'd be better to save time and play fewer trains. Since everyone has to do it, it shouldn't really matter, unless someone has a physical disability that inhibits their ability to place trains. Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 15:14
  • @nuclearwang what I mean is based on seating position and where on the board the player is placing the trains it may take longer for some players. Also this is not accounting for anything else that would slow down the player.
    – Joe W
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 15:19

As others have noted, there is no rule regarding turn times. (Some people believe that, when the box says "60-90 minutes", that this is one of the rules of the game; but this is not an actual rule.)

Etiquette says that you should make the game fun for other players as well as yourself, and making your opponents sit there for several minutes while you debate the pros and cons of five different cards is not "making the game fun" for them.

This being your wife makes it a difficult situation. There are people that I simply will not play games with any more. Other times, I will break out my iPhone and play a game (yes, a game) of Gin Rummy or Cribbage while I'm waiting for my turn. You need to find a polite way to express to your wife that, when the "whose turn it is" counter is 75%-25%, this stops being a fun endeavor for you. And I wish you the best of luck in figuring out how to do that. :)

  • 1
    You should also remember that when someone is forced to take turns faster than what they would like to the game can become more stressful and less fun for them. It should be noted that there are plenty of games that force other players to wait for extended periods of time when it is not their turn so that is a mechanic that you can always avoid. Forcing someone else to make changes to improve your fun can ruin it for them.
    – Joe W
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 16:45
  • You're right that it's a mechanic I can avoid, if I know the mechanic is part of the game. This is Ticket to Ride.
    – hymie
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 17:04
  • This is a part of ticket to ride as each player needs to make choices on their turn that are directly impacted by the players before them and there is nothing to do when it is not your turn.
    – Joe W
    Commented Oct 2, 2018 at 17:07

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