Outlines how to play baccarat, taking you through the glamorous card game’s history, rules and best strategies for winning at baccarat.
Baccarat is one of the oldest and most popular games in casinos around the world. It is especially popular with high rollers and features strongly in James Bond movies as the British spy’s favourite game. In some casinos, baccarat dominates the gaming scene extremely. While the game may seem very serious and elegant, in truth it is as simple as flipping a coin, and below we will explain in simple terms how to play baccarat like Bond.
- How to play baccarat: overview
- How to play baccarat: Types of baccarat
- How to play baccarat: rules and regulations
- How to play baccarat: simple guide
- How to play baccarat: 8 Decks
- How to play baccarat: 6 Decks
- How to play baccarat: 1 Deck
- Baccarat with reduced commission
- 9:1 Tie bets
- How to play baccarat: Search for trends
- Variations on rules
How to play baccarat: overview
Baccarat is often played in a luxurious, separate area to separate yourself from the other games. The players themselves in these rooms are usually very well dressed and the minimum stakes are often high. A baccarat table is usually about the same size as a craps table with 3 croupiers and up to 12 or 14 players. Any player, including the one who deals, can bet on the player or the banker, but usually the dealer bets on the banker.
The players in turn become dealers, similar to how you take turns rolling the dice at the craps table. If a player does not want to give, he can pass the card sled on to the next player. The same person gives as long as the banker wins. The dealer places two cards face down under the card slot and gives two more cards, also face down, to the player who made the highest bet on “Player”.
That player looks at the cards and gives them back to the dealer. The dealer turns the cards over and a croupier announces the scores. Depending on how big these are, the croupier can instruct the dealer to deal a third card. The croupiers collect losses and pay out winnings from the bank.
How to play baccarat: Types of baccarat
Mini Baccarat is played by the same rules, except that the croupier flips the cards, making the game much faster. The odds are the same as at the big table with the same number of decks of cards. Mini Baccarat is sometimes played with 6 games in the slot, which changes the odds a little. It can usually be found in the main areas of casinos.
Midi Baccarat is the same as Mini Baccarat except that the table is larger and it is mostly played in very high stake rooms rather than on the main floor of the casino.
Big Table Baccarat is always played in a separate high roller area.
- This is about high stakes per hand from $ 100.
- The players are usually very well dressed.
- The baccarat table is, as the name Big Table suggests, very large here and about the size of a craps table.
- There are three casino dealers.
- And there is space for up to 12 or 14 players.
- Any player can still bet on the player or the banker .
- The dealer button goes around the table, much like the dice move around the craps table. If a player doesn’t want to deal, they can pass the shoe on to the next player.
How to play baccarat: rules and regulations
The player who deals is not allowed to place a bet and only deals the cards. The same person will deal as long as the banker wins.
Two cards are hidden face down under the shoe and given to the player with the highest stake. That player then looks at the cards and then gives them back to the player who deals. Then the player must turn the cards over and one of the casino dealers will announce the amounts.
Depending on the total of the two cards, the dealer can then instruct the person dealing the cards to deal a third card. Finally, the three dealers distribute the winning bets and collect the losing bets on the dealer table.
How to play baccarat: simple guide
- Baccarat is usually played with eight decks of cards
- The values of the cards are as follows: Ace = 1; 2-9 = eye value; 10 and picture cards = 0
- With each new card sled, the croupier turns over a card. This determines, according to the baccarat value, how many cards are discarded (except: 10 or picture cards = 10 cards discarded)
- The game begins when all players bet on “Player” or “Banker” or a tie. Sometimes you can bet on a pair of players or a pair of bankers
- After all bets are made, the dealer deals two cards each to each player and the banker. The number of points in a hand corresponds to the right digit of the sum of all cards. For example, if the two cards are an 8 and a 7, the total would be 15 and the score would be 5. The score will therefore always be between 0 and 9.
- Whether or not a third card is dealt depends on the following rules:
- If the player or banker has a score of 8 or 9, they both “stand”, meaning no more cards are dealt. THIS RULE APPLIES BEFORE EVERYONE ELSE
- If the player has a score of 5 or less, a third card is dealt, otherwise the player “stands”
- If the player “stands”, the banker “strikes” on a score of 5 or less, that is, a third card is dealt. If the player does not “stand” then use the table below to find out whether the banker gets a card or not.
(H = hits = third card; S = stands = no third card)
The scores of the player and the banker are compared; the winner is the one with the higher number of points. Bets on the banker win 19:20 (or even money – the same amount wagered plus the stake – minus 5% commission), bets on the player win 1: 1, bets on equal points usually win 8: 1. Most of the time, however, the stakes are returned in the event of a tie.
In the case of winning bets on the banker, the player gets “even money”. Meanwhile, the croupier marks the 5% owed with small laminated signs. At the end of each card slide, or when a player wants to leave, the croupier collects the entire commission owed.
How to play baccarat: 8 Decks
The tables below show the possible winnings from banker, player and tie bets in an 8 deck game. As the lower left columns show, the casino edge over the player (house edge) is 1.06% when betting on the banker, 1.24% when betting on the player and 14.36% when betting on a tie.
How to play baccarat: 6 Decks
The tables below show the possible winnings from banker, player and tie bets in a game of 6 decks of cards. As the lower left columns show, the casino edge over the player (house edge) is 1.06% when betting on the banker, 1.24% when betting on the player and 14.44% when betting on a tie.
How to play baccarat: 1 Deck
The tables below show the possible winnings from banker, player and tie bets in a game of 6 decks of cards. As the lower left columns show, the casino edge over the player (house edge) is 1.01% when betting on the banker, 1.29% when betting on the player and 15.75% when betting on a tie.
Baccarat with reduced commission
There have already been won bets on the banker with less than 5% commission. For years the Las Vegas Horseshoe offered 4% of large table games. In 1989 the “Sahara” even offered 0% commission for a short time. The “Betfair” Internet Casino offers a 2.75% commission in their “Zero Lounge”.
9:1 Tie bets
There are many rule variants that differ slightly from the Playtech rules. Here are a few examples and their house edge. Casino Royale (Playtech): House advantage 0.18% (with 8 decks) Harrah’s: House advantage 0.58% Tropicana: House advantage 0.37% Russia: The player has an advantage of 0.2% if “early surrender” is allowed against an ace.
In some casinos, a tie pays 9: 1. “Binion’s Horseshoe” in Las Vegas and the “Bodog” online casino, for example, still pay 9: 1.
8 decks of cards: 4.844%
6 decks of cards: 4.931%
1 deck of cards: 6.385%
How to play baccarat: Search for trends
Each baccarat table has plenty of point cards and pens so that players can keep track of the results of each hand. Most players do this reverently, too, carefully analyzing their cards for trends as the winning hand moves back and forth from banker to player. This is a waste of time! The smart player will always bet on the banker and ignore the point cards.
Variations on rules
Liberal bankers rules
A less than 5% commission on profits from banker bets has been known to happen. Downtown Las Vegas D-Casino uses a 4% commission banker wager. For a short time in 1989 the Sahara offered 0% commission. The Betfair Internet Casino offers a 2.75% commission in their “Zero Lounge”. The table below shows the expected value of the banker bet by the number of decks and commission.
Commission 1 deck 6 decks 8 decks
5.00% -1.012% -1.056% -1.058%
4.00% -0.552% -0.597% -0.599%
3.00% -0.092% -0.139% -0.141%
2.75% 0.022% -0.024% -0.026%
0.00% 1.286% 1,237% 1,235%
Liberal player rules
The “Bonus Casino” in the 5-Dimes Internet Sports Book pays 1.01 to 1 on the player bet. Assuming eight decks, the house edge on this bet is 1.04%.
Liberal tie rule
The bond is known to pay 9 to 1 at some casinos. For example, Binion’s Horseshoe is used in Las Vegas, and the online casino pays 9 to 1. Here is the house edge on the tie bet if it pays 9 to 1.
8 decks: 4,844%
6 decks: 4,931%
1 deck: 6,385%
The “bonus casino” in the 5 Dimes Internet Sports Book pays 9.4 to 1 on the tie bet. Assuming eight decks, the house edge on this bet is 0.79%.
Liberal couple rules
We have an unconfirmed report that the Fallsview Casino in Niagara Falls pays 12 to 1 on either a player pair or a banker pair. Based on an eight deck game, that would reduce the house edge to 2.89%. In a six-deck game, the house edge would be 3.86%.
Equity or ‘egalite’ bets
Equities are side bets on certain ties in baccarat. These bets are often seen in England and rarely anywhere else.
Each baccarat table will have plenty of playing cards and pencils for the players to keep track of the outcome of each hand. Most players will do this religiously and carefully analyze their card for trends as the winning hand switches back and forth from banker to player. This is a huge waste of time ! The smart player will bet on the banker every time and rely on the playing cards alone.