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I'm new to Canasta, so I've been reading a lot of rules on the internet and found out that there are many variations. Luckily, the rules to Classic Canasta seem to be pretty consistent from site to site, but I still have this question about "Going out concealed"...

Let's say that my partner has already gotten a Canasta. I haven't laid down a single card yet, and then (by some miracle), I'm able to meld everything in my hand all at once and go out, but I don't have a Canasta.

All the rules that I've read say that I have to have a Canasta, but since you only have to have one Canasta per team, and my partner already has one, I don't see why I shouldn't be able to do it without one and get the extra 100-point bonus for "Going out concealed".

Also, is it true that I can't play on my partner's pile at all in order to "go out concealed"? If we're playing together, our pile is one and the same, so I don't see why I couldn't do that either.

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Yes, you can do this. There are no special rules or restrictions regarding going out concealed, so you are just subject to the rules for melding normally, along with the rules for going out normally.

Melds belong to both your partner and melds by either of you can be placed in front of either of you; there is only one set of melds for your partnership.

All the melds of a partnership are placed in front of either partner.

A player may add additional cards to a meld by their side, provided that the melds remain valid (having no more than three wild cards).

A player goes out when they get rid of the last card in their hand by discarding or melding it, provided that their side has melded at least one canasta or they complete a canasta while going out. Failing this requirement, a player must keep at least one card in their hand.

A player goes out "concealed" when they meld their entire hand in one turn, including at least one canasta, without having made an earlier meld and without previously having added any card to melds that their partner has made

So it only matters if your partnership has a Canasta, not if you personally do. And you can always add cards to your partnership's melds; it makes no difference if the cards were melded previously by you or your partner. Whether you are just melding some cards or going out makes no difference there.

Source: https://bicyclecards.com/how-to-play/canasta/

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  • Thanks Gendo. Now I know that I can try to use that trick whenever my partner has gotten a great start, and I'm acting like I'm getting nowhere, and then...Boom! I'm out, and I've got 200 bonus points for my team! – Myles Markson Mar 7 at 1:08
  • @MylesMarkson Remember to be careful with that so you don't leave your partner with to many cards in their hand. – Joe W Mar 7 at 1:41
  • Good point Joe. Am I allowed to ask my partner beforehand if it's alright to "go out concealed"? – Myles Markson Mar 7 at 2:07
  • You can always choose to ask your partner if you are allowed to go out; if you choose to ask then their answer is binding. – GendoIkari Mar 7 at 5:59

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