The International Geography Bee consists of two parts: the National Qualifying Exams and the National Championships. 

The best resource for preparing for the National Championships are the past National Championships questions posted here as well as the questions used in the Quiz Bowl Tournament portion of the US Geography Championship’s Varsity and Junior Varsity National Championships from 2013-2016. These are all posted at this link.

If at all possible, we strongly recommend students get advance practice and experience with buzzer-based academic competition through participation in National History Bee and Bowl events (click here to register). Many students (especially those with experience in other non-buzzer based geography competitions, but lacking buzzer-based academic competition experience) may find buzzer-based play takes some getting used to in order to excel at, and it is beneficial for students to get some buzzer-based competition experience (even if not on mostly geography questions) prior to the National Championships.

Links to additional buzzer-style quiz questions can be found on the National History Bee and Bowl’s resources here(many of these questions have a historical geography focus). You can also view all-subject quiz questions at including a much narrower selection of all-geography events (in particular, any event labeled “Geography Monstrosity” in the Collegiate section of the website though those questions are considerably harder on average than even the Varsity and Junior Varsity National Championships questions for IGB. Still, there is certainly some overlap.

Additionally, we recommend that students keep up to date with current events, as a fair number of the questions have a focus on what is currently happening in the world, and how geography applies to national and international affairs. The Economist and The New York Times are worth reading in particular for this purpose (paywalls apply).

Motivated students might also consider becoming an AFS Exchange Student (or hosting one from another country) for a particularly unique chance to learn about foreign cultures and languages while studying overseas and living with a host family. Upon graduation, students can also further their geographic, international relations, and intercultural knowledge through participation in the International Youth Leadership Conference. Contact IGB founder, AFS alumnus (Semester Program to Vienna, Austria in 1998-1999), and IYLC past participant (Prague, 2003) David Madden if you have any further questions about either of these adventures at