The World Bridge Series Championships came into being in 1962, under the name of World Pair Olympiad which comprised the World Open Pairs Championship and the World Women Pairs Championships. At the same time, the inaugural World Mixed Teams Championship was also held. Pierre Jais and Roger Trézel of France were the first Open Pairs champions, while in the Women event, Rixi Markus and Fritzi Gordon from Great Britain prevailed.
The second such tournament, held in 1966 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, had a new competition added to the programme: the World Mixed Pairs Championship, won by USA's Mary Jane Farell and Ivan Erdos; however, the World Mixed Teams Championship was not held. The same programme applied to the third event, organized in 1970 in Stockholm, as well as the fourth one held in Las Palmas, Canary Islands, Spain, in 1974, except that the World Mixed Teams Championship was again added after 12 years.
An important change took place in the 1978 Championships, held in New Orleans, USA, which saw the inauguration of the World Knockout Teams for the Rosenblum Cup, named in honour of the former WBF president who had died five months earlier. First holders of the Cup were Poland.
The World Mixed Teams Championship was once again discontinued (it was re-instituted in 1996, and since then it is played together with the World Team Olympiad on leap years). The programme of 1978 was applied in the next two editions, held in 1982 in Biarritz, France, and in 1986 in Miami Beach, Florida, USA.
The 8th edition of the series, organized in 1990 in Geneva, Switzerland, saw the introduction of the World Senior Pairs Championship; this was won by Albert Dormer and Alan Hiron of Great Britain. Four years later, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA, the popularity of the World Open Knockout Teams led to the inauguration of two more team competitions: the World Women's Knockout Teams for the McConnell Cup, won by the United States; and the World Senior Knockout Teams, won by Rohan's transnational squad. The same programme applied to the next three editions, held in 1998 in Lille, France; 2002, in Montreal, Canada; and 2006, in Verona, Italy.
At the13th edition, held in 2010 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, the event assumed a new name: World Bridge Series Championships, and a new competition was added to the programme: the World Mixed Swiss Teams.