Reading this in a later time zone? The Wordle answer for game #550 was LUNAR.

Kelly here, happy to score a 3/6 on today’s Wordle even after a lucky turn netted me a rare 2/6 yesterday.

(Just to clarify, as I got a lot of holiday well wishes, I’m still penning the column through the rest of the week until Alan takes over from Christmas through the New Year.)

As usual, I began with RAISE, which is my favorite of the best Wordle start words. Unfortunately, it was rather unlucky today, leaving behind 98 possible solutions. You were better off starting with LANCE (1), LEANT (2), LEAST (11), TRAIN (13) or SLANT (23).

It took me awhile to find common start words that fared worse than RAISE. They include ROAST (111), CLOSE (121), CREST (138) and TRICE (141).

For my second guess, I wanted to place the ‘A’ and ‘R,’ plus find another vowel and more consonants. The most common ones, aside from ‘R’ and ‘S,’ are ‘T,’ ‘L,’ ‘N’ and ‘C.’ So, I like to guess a word incorporating a couple of them, which is why I chose CORAL.

It wasn’t right, though Wordlebot applauded it as a “wonderful choice” that narrowed down possible solutions to just three.

Other players in my position went with TRACK, CHART and TRAMP ahead of CORAL.

Wordle 550

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)

At that point, I wondered if another ‘A’ was present, but decided to try the ‘U.’ Again, I wanted to select a word with one of the common consonants I hadn’t used, so I ended up typing in LUNAR.

And it was correct, huzzah! If I had gone with my initial thought of a second ‘A,’ I might’ve guessed ALTAR — which is what some players in my position did. But most of them, like me, went with LUNAR. I scored a 3/6, so I’m over the moon.


If you’re looking for a list of older Wordle answers, we can also help. Here’s a list going back 20 games.

  •  Wordle #550: LUNAR
  • Wordle #549: THIRD
  • Wordle #548: SLATE
  • Wordle #547: TAPER
  • Wordle #546: CHORD
  • Wordle #545: PROBE
  • Wordle #544: RIVAL
  • Wordle #543: USUAL
  • Wordle #542: SPOKE
  • Wordle #541: APPLY
  • Wordle #540: NAIVE
  • Wordle #539: KNOCK
  • Wordle #538: BRAID
  • Wordle #537: INFER
  • Wordle #565: JOUST
  • Wordle #535: AMBER
  • Wordle #534: WOKEN
  • Wordle #533: ADORE
  • Wordle #532: TORSO
  • Wordle #531: CHAFE
  • Wordle #530: EJECT


The best tip I can give is to use one of the best Wordle start words. I can’t stress this enough — it makes a massive difference.

Without one, you’ll be scrabbling around in the dark trying (and possibly failing) to find the right five letters (or possibly fewer) out of the 26 possibles. But clever people (not me) have done the math and identified the best start words based on both frequency in English and frequency among Wordle answers. So use them!

Secondly, think about combinations, especially at the start and end. Some options are far more common than others — for instance, SH, ST, CR and CH all feature frequently.

Vowels obviously need consideration too: not all Wordle answers will contain more than one, but plenty do, and some even have three. A good Wordle start word should have used a couple, but if they don’t feature you might well want to try another one or two on your next go.

Plus, remember the Y — this sometimes acts as a surrogate vowel, and is easy to forget. It also appears at the end of plenty of words.

Finally, try out possibilities. So long as you don’t press ‘Enter’ you can try possible answers to see how they look on screen. Put in likely letters plus any you know are definitely in the word, then mentally change one to the other available options. This technique has worked for me multiple times, and it’s particularly helpful when the word in question is not an obvious one (like FJORD or ISLET).


Wordle officially launched in October 2021, but actually started in June of that year and celebrated its first birthday on June 19, 2022. (You can read my thoughts on the 5 things Wordle needs to improve if it’s to keep us playing for its second year.)

However, it only grew in popularity towards the end of the year, then went viral in January as the world woke up to its charms. In fact, it proved so successful that The New York Times bought Wordle for a seven-figure sum in early February and the game is now part of NYT Games.

It’s played via the NYT Games website here(opens in new tab), and is entirely free. Both the NYT and the game’s creator, Josh Wardle, have stated that it will remain free. Some people think that Wordle has got harder since the NYT takeover, but it really hasn’t.

Wordle is a simple game in which your challenge is to guess a five-letter word in six attempts. Each time you guess, you’re told which of your chosen letters are in the target word, and whether they are in the right place.

If a letter is in the correct place, it turns green. If it’s in the word but in the wrong place, it turns yellow. And if it’s not in the word at all, it turns gray.

There’s just one puzzle a day, and everyone completes the same one. It resets at midnight each day. You’ll find more information about the game in our What is Wordle? article.


If you’re eager for another game to pass the time while you wait, we’ve put together a list of the best Wordle alternatives. We also have a page on today’s Quordle answers, because it’s our favorite, and also today’s Heardle answer — because that’s great too.

Other Wordle alternatives to try are the ultra-stressful (but very good) Squabble and the soccer-themed, Who Are Ya?. We also like the geography-based Wordle clone Worldle, the Star Wars-themed SWordle and the math-based Mathler.

There are certainly plenty of options once you’ve finished Wordle for the day!

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