Tarot Tricks: How to Read Playing Cards for Love Questions

Updated on June 30, 2020
theraggededge profile image

I'm a professional tarot reader, but when I don't have a tarot deck with me, I can use a deck of playing cards to provide a useful reading.

Using Playing Cards for Fortune Telling

When you have a pressing question, but no one to talk to nor a deck of tarot cards to consult, pick up a pack of playing cards. It’s true: You can get information, advice, and insights with plain old playing cards. In this article, we’re taking a look at reading playing cards for love.

When using the method described here, it's important that you stick to one-card readings. If you begin to combine cards, you will become confused. If you want to learn how to read with more cards, check out How to Read Tarot with Playing Cards. You'll need to learn the basic structure and how cards interact together. And, if you are determined to take it further, I also have a selection of playing card tarot spreads.

For now, here is a basic fast-answer system to your most pressing romantic questions.

How to use playing cards to answer questions about love.
How to use playing cards to answer questions about love.

How the Suits of Playing Cards Translate to Tarot

The art of reading cards is called 'cartomancy'—literally, telling the future with cards.

For a quick reference, the playing card suits equate to tarot cards as follows:

  • Clubs = Wands: action and creativity—ideas, inspiration, and passion that cause us to act.
  • Hearts = Cups: emotions, love—all the feeling aspects of life.
  • Spades = Swords: intellect and communication—all that which goes on in our heads.
  • Diamonds = Pentacles: material concerns—wealth, health, career.

Formulate a Love Question

Think about the question you want to ask. My advice is to avoid questions that will give you no useful information whatsoever, such as, “Will I meet my romantic partner this year?” What’s the point?

Instead, ask “What do I need to do to meet my romantic partner this year?” That gives you a piece of information that you can actually use to take positive action. It puts you in control instead of you thinking you are at the mercy and whim of fate.

So when formulating your question, try to avoid what we call a closed question. That means one that can be answered yes or no. You want to elicit as much information from your card as possible.

Examples of Relationship Questions to Ask Playing Cards

  • What do I need to know about this relationship?
  • How will I know my love when I meet him/her?
  • What should I do to be ready for romance?
  • What can the cards tell me about this person?
  • What is the love energy surrounding me at the moment?
  • What positive action can I take to find love?
  • How can I make him/her notice me?
  • I think I’m in love, can the cards confirm my feelings?
  • I think he loves me, can the cards confirm my thoughts?

I’m sure you can think of a better one that applies to your situation.

In the next section I’m going to list out the general meanings of the card as they apply to love. It’s up to you to interpret them to fit your question.

How to interpret clubs when using playing cards for tarot.
How to interpret clubs when using playing cards for tarot.

The Suit of Clubs: Wands/Action

  • Ace of Clubs: new inspiration, passion, intense love affair.
  • Two of Clubs: delaying of plans, waiting for love, obstacles.
  • Three of Clubs: you’ve done all you can for the time being. Patience.
  • Four of Clubs: fruition, stability, consolidation (engagement, marriage, living together).
  • Five of Clubs: competition, challenge, someone else fighting for attention.
  • Six of Clubs: victory, you reach your goal and/or attain your desire.
  • Seven of Clubs: standing up for your rights, going against the consensus.
  • Eight of Clubs: things moving quickly, hurried marriage, pregnancy.
  • Nine of Clubs: possible end of a relationship, rocky patch, inner strength required.
  • Ten of Clubs: habit, boredom, determination to keep going.
  • Jack of Clubs: unfaithful, immature man. Has many affairs.
  • Queen of Clubs: passionate, possibly unfaithful woman, fun friend.
  • King of Clubs: strong alpha male. Leader.

How to interpret hearts when using playing cards for tarot.
How to interpret hearts when using playing cards for tarot.

The Suit of Hearts: Cups/Feelings

  • Ace of Hearts: new, overflowing of love, deep attraction, initial feelings.
  • Two of Hearts: mutual attraction, love blossoming, connection at a soul level.
  • Three of Hearts: fun, friendship, celebration, lightheartedness.
  • Four of Hearts: turning inward, mild depression, missing love opportunities.
  • Five of Hearts: emotional challenge, difficulties, loss, despair, break-ups.
  • Six of Hearts: reunions, reconnection, reconciliation.
  • Seven of Hearts: choices, indecisiveness, inaction.
  • Eight of Hearts: solitude, walking your own path, leaving a relationship.
  • Nine of Hearts: independence, self-sufficiency, love of self, happy right where you are.
  • Ten of Hearts: family, emotional fulfillment, long-term love.
  • Jack of Hearts: romantic, immature young male, serial relationships.
  • Queen of Hearts: romantic female, good friend, emotional support.
  • King of Hearts: gentle male, supportive, someone to trust.

How to interpret spades when using playing cards for tarot.
How to interpret spades when using playing cards for tarot.

The Suit of Spades: Swords/Intellect and Communication

  • Ace of Spades: new idea, sudden realization/understanding, clarity, truth.
  • Two of Spades: unwilling to face the truth, unable to reach out.
  • Three of Spades: miscommunication, misunderstanding, relationship problem.
  • Four of Spades: rest, recuperation, solitude, reassessment.
  • Five of Spades: betrayal, lies, misled, duped. Giving up, walking away.
  • Six of Spades: moving on, recovery, travel, hope.
  • Seven of Spades: acting alone, taking back control, regaining confidence.
  • Eight of Spades: thinking you’re trapped, unable to progress, self-deception.
  • Nine of Spades: nightmares, overwhelmed, problems.
  • Ten of Spades: ending, divorce, trauma, new beginning.
  • Jack of Spades: intellectual, focussed, clever youth.
  • Queen of Spades: highly intelligent, influential female. Sometimes indicates ‘the other woman’.
  • King of Spades: professional, intelligent, mature man. Usually highly qualified and authoritative.

How to interpret diamonds when using playing cards for tarot.
How to interpret diamonds when using playing cards for tarot.

The Suit of Diamonds: Pentacles/Practical Matters

  • Ace of Diamonds: relationship enters new phase. New home, project or other practical matter.
  • Two of Diamonds: adjustment, balance, getting used to each other.
  • Three of Diamonds: focus on work, creating and building relationship.
  • Four of Diamonds: unwilling to compromise, repression, meanness.
  • Five of Diamonds: financial loss, difficult times, housing issues.
  • Six of Diamonds: charity, helping hand, someone willing to listen.
  • Seven of Diamonds: vaguely dissatisfied, wanting more, looking for practical opportunities.
  • Eight of Diamonds: change of direction, prioritizing career or studies over love.
  • Nine of Diamonds: independence, self-sufficiency, satisfaction.
  • Ten of Diamonds: family, inheritance, business, organization, financial security.
  • Jack of Diamonds: hard-working, sincere young man.
  • Queen of Diamonds: practical, mother figure, sensuous woman.
  • King of Diamonds: mature, self-made man. Enjoys luxury and fruits of his labor.

What does the Joker mean for fortune telling?
What does the Joker mean for fortune telling?

The Joker

It’s your choice whether or not to include one of the Joker cards. Generally the Joker is equivalent to the Fool in the tarot. It can represent the person asking the question, or if it shows up in a random drawing, it means taking a chance, embarking on an adventure, or not worrying about the consequences of one’s actions.

The Meaning of the Queen of Spades
The Meaning of the Queen of Spades

Example Playing Card Reading

Question: Andy asks, “What do I need to know about this relationship?” He’s recently met someone and is attracted to her but not sure whether to take it any farther.

Randomly drawn card: Queen of Spades. Andy doesn’t feel that this card represents his new girlfriend. It’s possible that there could be some sort of interference or influence from an older woman. Perhaps his mother, or hers. He decides to take things cautiously and to pay attention to signs that someone might be attempting to sabotage their relationship, or come between them. Armed with this knowledge, he’ll be able to deal with it when, and if, there’s a problem. He plans on drawing another card after a week or so has passed.

How Long to Wait Between Tarot Readings?

If you have another question, then simply shuffle the deck and do a reading straight away. However, beware asking about the same situation too often. You’ll not get a straight answer, and you’ll end up feeling confused. Set the cards aside, wait a few days, then try again.

The cards used for this article are Bicycle Ghost Playing Cards by Ellusionist

Feel free to ask any playing card love questions in the comment section, but note that I cannot give free readings here.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

  • I asked the cards if I'll be happy with the man who's currently courting me and got a king of spades, queen of hearts and 4 of clubs. What does it mean?

    What do you think it means? Also, you only need one card to answer a yes/no question. Otherwise, it becomes confusing. It looks like marriage or living together to me.

  • I think he likes me. Can reading playing cards confirm my thoughts?

    No doubt they can. Give it a try. The techniques for reading playing cards for love are given in the article. Draw your card, then check the lists above for your answer.

    However, those answers are very short, of course, so if you take the meaning I've given, you can expand it. So let's say you get an awkward card like the Four of Spades (rest, recuperation, solitude, reassessment). It doesn't seem to fit, but if you consider your situation, the card might be advising you to relax, let it go, don't push it. It also might be pointing at other areas of your life. Maybe you have been getting stressed out over work or family issues? The cards always give you what you need to know.

    Just grab your cards and give it a go. You'll soon be reading like a professional.

  • How can I get a love timeline by reading playing cards?

    Before you lay out your cards, express your intention for them to reflect a time-line. Then designate three positions: near future, medium outlook, distant future. Focus on the situation, shuffle and turn your cards.

  • I think he loves me. Can playing cards confirm my thoughts?

    They can certainly give you an indication of how things are going between you. Give it a try. I suggest using a single card to avoid any confusion. You might not receive a definite answer but then again you might.

    Cards that would confirm his love would be Ace, Two, Six, Ten and King of Hearts, Ace and Four of Clubs. You need to read the lists of meanings in the article to get the full picture.

  • How do I properly lay out playing cards for love readings?

    There is no one way to lay out the cards. If you are doing one-card readings, just shuffle and draw a random card. For two or more, I tend to shuffle, cut the cards with my left hand, place the bottom section on the top and turn the cards from the (new) top of the deck.

    More information on different kinds of playing card layouts here: https://exemplore.com/fortune-divination/Playing-C...

© 2017 Bev G


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    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 months ago from Wales, UK

      Hi Rach, the Joker is like the Fool in tarot. It tells you to loosen up, take a risk, look for fun and happiness, rather than love. Find your inner happy, and your love will show up :)

    • profile image


      2 months ago

      Hi Bev,

      I asked the cards : what must i do to have a blissful love life.(fyi i am currently in a rship but i feel my partner is still unsure about me.)

      My answer: Joker card.

      What does this mean, what is the advice it is giving?

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 months ago from Wales, UK

      Hi Jaanvi, I'm not sure why you would want to know about your brother's love life in the first place?

      Just look up the meanings for:

      Seven of Wands

      King of Swords

      Queen of Swords.

      Then apply those meanings to the positions you assigned.

    • profile image

      Jaanvi Daiya 

      2 months ago

      I asked what how is my brother's love life and the cards that came were 7 of clubs for past King of spade for present and queen of spade for future I am not sure about the meaning .

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      9 months ago from Wales, UK

      Hi Keela, I have another article here that might be helpful: https://exemplore.com/fortune-divination/How-to-Re...

      If you are more interested in tarot cards, you could start here: https://exemplore.com/fortune-divination/Tarot-Car...

      Good luck!

    • profile image


      9 months ago

      I'm new at this but would like to find out all I can where should I go to do so

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      11 months ago from Wales, UK

      Hi Kiki, I cannot interpret your cards for you. If you read the article, the method used is for single card readings and all the meanings are given.

    • profile image


      11 months ago

      I was thinking about a person and shuffling my cards. Ace of Spade, King of hearts and Queen of heart fell down. What does that mean?

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      11 months ago from Wales, UK

      Hi Kenzie, it says, right at the beginning, that this method is for one card readings. However, if you want to do more complex readings, then there are some ideas in this article: https://exemplore.com/fortune-divination/Playing-C...

    • profile image


      11 months ago

      How many cards do i pick out after shuffling

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      13 months ago from Wales, UK

      Well, I hope all your outcomes are happy ones, Brenda :)

    • Brenda Arledge profile image


      13 months ago from Washington Court House

      This one i am saving for a reference to give it a try.

      Ya never know, it might be enlightening.

      Thanks for your hard work and detail. Much appreciated.

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 years ago from Wales, UK

      Kim, for this kind of question you only need one card because you are looking for a yes or no answer. If you go with the first card, then the answer is probably no. See the meaning given above.

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      I asked will me and the guy I use to date reconcile, the 1st card was 5 spades, then 2 hearts, jack of spades, 9 diamonds, 6 clubs , queen diamond , 6 heart and ace of clubs

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 years ago from Wales, UK

      Clover Le, What do you think the cards mean in connection with your own circumstances?

    • profile image

      Clover Le 

      2 years ago

      My self-reading question was "What do I need to know about my love life?" and 2 Kings of Diamond and Spade appeared so what does it mean exactly?

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 years ago from Wales, UK

      I would be suspicious, to be honest, but I wouldn't jump to conclusions on the turn of a few cards. Six of Swords/Spades, indicates someone moving/drifting away. The two Clubs/Wands are problematical -- the Knight of Wands is a philanderer, the Queen of Wands is flighty. As I said, hold back and see what unfolds, Lindsay.

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      I asked "What do I need to know about my current relationship (3 years, I have concerns of infidelity) and I drew a 6 of spades. For clarification I drew two additional cards (Jack of Clubs and the Queen of Clubs). What are your thoughts?

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 years ago from Wales, UK

      Yes, I agree, Louise, tarot (or whatever) is just brilliant at shining a light for people.

    • louiseelcross profile image

      Louise Elcross 

      2 years ago from Preston

      Thanks for this hub. I used to read cards from a deck when I was younger and my readings were accurate. I have never heard of anyone else doing it until I saw this hub. I also used to read tarot but now I only read enlightenment cards for which I get a lot of requests. I like that I can be of help to those that are not even sure of how they are feeling. After reading your hub I might even pick up a deck and see how I go on.

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 years ago from Wales, UK

      Got to love a bit of crazy, Dorothy :)

    • Casey White profile image

      Mike and Dorothy McKenney 

      2 years ago from United States

      I have never heard of reading playing cards, but I'm going to start doing it. My husband will think it's crazy but he already thinks I'm crazy, so I may as well expand my "craziness" to something fun. Nice work!

    • theraggededge profile imageAUTHOR

      Bev G 

      2 years ago from Wales, UK

      Hi Broun, it's just a question of what feels more comfortable for you. For me, it's definitely tarot. Playing cards are more temporary. Others read playing cards all their life.

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      Do you think learning Tarot on a /playing Deck is more accurate for some beginners? (Learning cards & Tarot)


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