20th Jan2020

A Beginner’s Guide to Baccarat

by James Smith

baccarat-table

If you’re looking to have some James Bond-esque casino fun, look no further than Baccarat. Chemin-de-fer is the favoured game of 007 in the series of novels by Ian Fleming and the secret agent famously plays it in his Casino Royale debut, as well as in a number of film adaptations.

If you’re into games of simplicity, you’ll find Baccarat a good option, as it’s easy to pick up and there are few betting options. However, at a casino online, you’ll find variations of the game including Punto Banco (more commonly known as just ‘Baccarat’), Banque or even live Baccarat. If you’re new to the game, here’s all you need to know before you try and beat the banker.

How to bet

Players have three options for wagering: to bet on their hand, the banker’s hand or the outcome to be a tie. Players must bet before the cards are dealt.

How to play

Two cards are dealt to both the player and the banker and their totals are announced. Aces are worth a point, with numbers 2-9 worth their numerical value, while 10s and picture cards are worth no points. If either total is worth more than 10 points, then the second digit is the value of the hand. For example, a 2 and 6 would make eight points, while an 8 and 9 would make seven points. In order to win your bet, you must have selected the correct hand total closest to nine points.

Natural win and a third card

If either the player or the banker receives a total of eight or nine points, it’s called a ‘natural’. If this is the case, the game is over and any bets that have been placed are cashed out.

The scenarios for a third card are where things start to get a bit more complicated. If the player has a total of eight or nine, they will not receive an additional card, and if their total is six or seven, they must stand. However, if their total is 0-5, they will receive an additional card – that is unless the banker has a total of eight or nine, meaning they have a natural and win the hand.

The situations for the banker receiving an additional card are more complicated still. Like the player, if the banker’s total is 0-5, they receive a third card, but if they total six or seven, they stand. All other options are based on the outcome of the player’s third card – this table should clear things up:

baccarat-chart

Tips for winning:

  • Never make the tie bet
    The house edge for the banker winning in 1.06% while the player is 1.24%. in terms of casino games, these are incredible house edges. But throw the tie into the mix and you’re looking at 14.4%!
  • The banker is the best bet
    The banker has slightly better odds and will win over 50% of the time. This is because 5% commission is given to the house with every win, so that the casino still has one-up over the player.
  • Capitalise on streaks
    As we have mentioned, the banker has slightly better odds of winning, so if after your first bet, the banker goes on a streak, run with it until it loses.

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