Online Baccarat is an excellent table game to try especially for those wanting to learn more about playing card games. As the game is completely automated, you can start picking up trends and learning the rules as you place bets and play.
Pronounced BAK-KAH-RAH, this royal game found its way into private gambling halls in the early 1900s and remains a popular choice for the rich and famous.
Many variations of the game have been created over the last few decades and are suited to both new gamblers and those who have been playing for a long time.
What is Baccarat?
Baccarat is a card game found under the table games category at many online casinos. Played with standard playing cards where the Joker has been removed, the objective of the game is to place bets on which opponent of the game will have the stronger hand – which is the player with the hand nearest to the value of 9.
The easy rules make it ideal for social gambling where players can set up home games and have some fun with friends.
In standard American Baccarat or Punto Banco, you will need to predict the outcome of the round by placing bets in one of three categories:
Before dealing the cards, you will take your seat in one of 14 spots around the virtual table and place bets in the marked areas.
Both cards are dealt face down and, once the Player and Banker have received their cards, the cards are flipped to reveal the value.
Whichever player has the cards with the value that most closely totals 9, wins! It’s that easy. The player who receives 9 instantly is considered to have a natural hand and wins the round outright.
Baccarat is different from other card games in the sense that face cards like Jack, Queen and King are often desirable in games like Blackjack and Poker. However, the best cards to receive in Baccarat are the cards with the face value of 2-9.
Here are the card values according to their rank:
- 9 = 9
- 8 = 8
- 7 = 7
- 6 = 6
- 5 = 5
- 4 = 4
- 3 = 3
- 2 = 2
- Aces = 1
- 10, J, Q, K = 0
As this casino game originated in the French royal courts, understanding a few of the foreign phrases can go a long way to make you feel more comfortable.
A Deux Tableau: Another name for Baccarat Banque, players are issued with cards once a Banker and Player have been nominated to fulfil those roles at the table. These roles are rotated with each round and the player with the highest stake represents the Player when it comes to making decisions.
Chemin de Fer: Also known as Chemmy, this is another variation of Baccarat that is fast-paced and exciting!
Here are a few terms you may come across while finding out more about the game.
- Banco – Italian and Spanish for bank and Banker, this is one of the competing entities in the game of Baccarat.
- Punto – Italian for Player, this is the opposite entity to the Banker.
- Coup – French for “hit” or “blow”, this is another term used for a round of Baccarat where both the Player and Banker hands have been tallied.
- Shoe – This is the device used to store and shuffle cards during card games at both land-based and online casinos.
Useful Strategies for Online Baccarat
In the standard American Baccarat, we’ve been discussing, you simply need to place bets on which entity will have the stronger hand.
The online version is almost fully automated and you get to enjoy the bet making process without any of the Math or decision-making processes needed in the land-based version.
Betting on a Tie – As this would require both the Player and the Banker to receive cards of the same value, betting on a Tie in Baccarat carries the highest house edge of all 3 options.
Following the Shoe – Card counters have made use of this strategy for decades despite being known for “gamblers folly”. Trying to spot trends and use this as a way to decide on your next move holds slightly less risk than betting on a tie but also won’t guarantee a win often enough for it to yield a positive outcome every time.
Martingale Betting Strategy – Thought to be a sure-fire way to win, the Martingale strategy encourages you to double your stake after each loss. From a statistical perspective, this may well be the case however, it may require a lengthy stay at the table for this to pay off.
Anti-Martingale Strategy – As with the Martingale, this strategy suggests that you should double your stake after each win.
Which Bet is Best?
Between Banker, Player and Tie, each betting option has science-backed data to best equip you to make the right choice.
Bet on Banker – With a house edge of just 1.06%, betting on Banker is such a popular choice that casinos take a commission of up to 5% on wins. It is a well-known strategy for Baccarat experts and yields more positive outcomes than any of the other options.
Bet on Player – The house edge is slightly higher at 1.24% and an excellent alternative to switch things up when placing bets online.
Bet on Tie – The 8x stake payout may draw newcomers to betting on a Tie, however, it has a house edge of over 14%.
Ultimately, even though you may have to pay a commission to the casino, betting on Banker is still the best option. Happy Hour discounts on this commission are available, so keep your eyes peeled!
Best Bankroll Techniques
Baccarat is a very sedate game where players take their time in placing their bets. There are versions like Mini Baccarat where the game moves more quickly and is high stakes in nature.
Setting your budget from the start is a responsible way to gamble and manage your money. A simple matter of choosing to only bet 5% of your bankroll for each hand can go a long way to ensure you enjoy the game.
All reputable online casinos have a range of tools on offer to encourage responsible gambling.
- Deposit Limits: Set daily, weekly and monthly limits to effectively manage your budget.
- Reality Check: Tried and tested casino games offer the service of a pop-up message after each hour of play with a break down of your time at the casino.
- Take a Break: Having the option to take some time away from gambling is a healthy tool. Whether the break is just a day or two, or a few weeks is entirely up to you.
Playing games of chance should be fun! Be sure to keep it that way by making use of the brilliant responsible gambling features provided by online casinos.
Is there just one kind of Baccarat game?
The most popular version of Baccarat is Punto Banco, which is also known as American Baccarat. In this variation, you will need to place bets on whether the Banker or Player will have the stronger hand, or whether they will both receive cards of the same value and Tie.
Another popular choice is Chemin DeFer, which is also known as Chemmy. This game is played at a fast pace. Finally, Baccarat Banque, which is also known as à deux tableaux offers you the choice as to whether or not to take cards handed to you.
What is different about Baccarat Banque?
This variation features a permanent Banker responsible for dealing the cards and setting the opening bet. Other players can “go bank” and match the opening bet, or team up with another player to split the stakes. The game is very similar to the rules used in Chemin de Fer.
How should I bet?
Use the house edge as a guideline to know which option to pick. The Banker has the best house edge at a mere 1.06%. Placing your bet on the Player has just a slightly higher house advantage at a still very respectable 1.23%. Betting on a Tie has a house edge of 14.4%.
Does the house commission affect the house edge?
Yes, as betting on the Banker is such a popular choice, the casino enjoys an advantage relative to the baccarat player. Strategically selecting games with a lower commission gives players the opportunity to cash in more of their winnings.
What should I know about playing Baccarat in a Live Casino?
Baccarat is often isolated from the casino floor and exclusively played by high rollers. With high stakes and players with deep pockets, the game is staffed by three people: two dealers (croupiers) managing the bets and a “call man” making announcements and directing the action.
Baccarat is extremely easy to learn and play, which makes it ideal for new players. Whether you stick with the more standard form of the game, or traverse more exotic waters, it is simple enough to play at home, in land-based casinos or online.
With the information provided here, you have all the essential tools needed to successfully join a Baccarat game and, with a little practice, stand the chance of winning large cash prizes!
Visit one of our recommended casinos today and give the game a try!