The Western Cue Bid is a 3-level cuebid that asks partner to bid 3NT with a stopper in the opponents' suit. It is the opposite of an "Eastern" cuebid, which shows a stopper in the enemy suit.

OpenerResponder
ATSK8652
HJT2A3
DAK3J842
CAQT8793

Opener    
1
3 (1)

Opp 1    
1


Responder    
1
3NT (2)

Opp 2    
2

  1. 3 is a Western Cue bid. Opener has a strong hand, but lacks spade support and wants to probe for 3NT. Partner's first priority is to bid 3NT with a heart stopper.
  2. 3NT shows a heart stopper.


OpenerResponder
K4SAQ52
H942T87
DAKT9872J3
CKAJ92

Opener    
1
3
4

Opp 1    
Pass
Pass
Pass

Responder    
1
3 (1)
Pass

Opp 2    
2
Pass
Pass

  1. 3 is a Western Cue bid. 3NT is a logical contract if opener has a heart control.
  2. 4 denies a heart stopper or spade support.


Rule #1: Western cuebids only occur at the 3-level.

OpenerResponder
96SA52
HKQ943AT87
DA87KJT3
CK9283

Opener    
1

Opp 1    
1

Responder    
2 (1)

Opp 2    

  1. 2 is a limit raise or better in hearts.


Rule #2: Western cuebids are not "jump" cuebids.

OpenerResponder
964S5
HKQ943AT87
DA87KJT3
CK9AQJT

Opener    
1

Opp 1    
1

Responder    
3 (1)

Opp 2    


  1. 3 is a splinter in most experienced partnerships, showing a singleton/void in spades and slam interest. A jump cuebid is never a Western cuebid.


Rule #3: A major-suit fit hasn't been identified.

OpenerResponder
ATS543
HKJT5432A98
DAQKT932
CKJT2

Opener    
1
3(1)

Opp 1    
1


Responder    
2


Opp 2    
2


  1. 3 shows first-round spade control and slam interest. Hearts have already been agreed as trumps, so this is not a Western cuebid.


Other Considerations

The Western cuebid can get extremely confusing. Partnerships should discuss the following scenarios.

  • Is a cuebid of a Weak two a Western cuebid? What if you're playing Michaels?

  • If the opponents have bid two different suits, is a cuebid of either suit a Western cuebid?

  • After partner makes a takeout double, is a 3-level cuebid a Western cuebid? For example, if the opponents open 2 and partner doubles for takeout, is 3 a Western cuebid, or does it show 4-4 in the majors?

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