How to Play Baccarat: Step-by-Step Guide to Baccarat Rules
Asian gamblers have been enjoying baccarat for years, and you will find the casino floor in Macau casinos dominated by baccarat tables. However, only in recent years has the popularity of this exciting game spread across the world as more players flock to online tables. In this guide, we are going to show you how to play baccarat, break down the rules and even give you some insider baccarat tips!
What is Live Baccarat? Baccarat Strategy
Live baccarat is an online version of the game where you connect to a land-based casino via streaming and a real dealer runs the action and deals the cards. Baccarat is popular with many gamblers because it is a game without any strategy. The only way to improve your chance of winning is to only bet on the banker’s hand but even then the house has a small edge.
What You Need To Know About Live Baccarat
Live baccarat is a fast action-packed game with one of the lowest house edges of any casino game. The game does not involve any strategy, is super quick to learn and no decisions need to be made as they are all pre-determined. Another cool feature of baccarat is the ability to wager on the dealer’s hand instead of your own. Unfortunately with live games, there are no free baccarat games, but you can play online baccarat in demo mode.
How To Play Live Baccarat
Playing live baccarat is super easy, just follow these steps:
- Open live casino section
- Sit at a baccarat table
- Select your bet - tie, banker, player
- Sit back and watch - in baccarat the play is predetermined so once you place your bet you just watch the action unfold as the dealer draws for you and themselves
- Collect your winnings - with baccarat you have a great shot at winning a hand due to the high win rate!
The card values in baccarat are as follows:
- 2 to 9 - These cards are worth face value
- 10, Jack, Queen, and King - These cards are worth 0
- Aces - Aces are worth 1
- Jokers - Jokers are removed from the deck
How The Hand Totals Work
Hand totals in online baccarat are slightly confusing for beginner players. A baccarat hand is calculated by summing the value of the cards and then only recognizing the last digit. For example, if you are dealt a 2 and 4 this hand is worth 6. While if you are dealt a 7 and an 8 the hand is worth 5 because the total is 15 and you only use the last digit.
Playing Live Baccarat Online
Every gambler should play baccarat online at least once. The game gives you a great chance of winning thanks to its high payout rate (almost 99%), it has crazy swings and lots of action. Not to mention the rules of baccarat are so simple that you can learn them in under 5 minutes! We recommend starting with a small deposit and trying your luck.
Third Card Rules
In baccarat, there are specific rules that state when the player or banker can draw a 3rd card. There are also rules which state when they must remain with their initial two cards.
Player’s 3rd card options
During a baccarat game, when the player receives two cards totaling 5 or less they must draw a third card unless the dealer has a hand of 8 or 9 as the hand is over and the dealer wins. If the player’s hand is 6 or 7 they must draw a 3rd card.
Dealers 3rd card options
According to baccarat rules the dealer always acts after the player. The dealer draws a 3rd card if their hand is:
- 2 or less
- 3 and the player’s hand is not an 8
- 4 and the player’s third card is not a 0, 1, 8 or 9
- 5 and the player’s third card is a 4,5,6 or 7
- 6 and the player’s third card is a 6 or 7
Live Baccarat Odds and Payouts
Live baccarat is incredibly popular based largely on its low odds and incredibly low house edge. Due to these conditions baccarat gives players a great shot at winning some cash. Let’s explore baccarat’s odds and house edge in-depth!
Odds & Payouts
In baccarat, you can make 3 types of bets, player, banker, and tie. Each bet has different odds and different payouts which can be seen below:
- Player - Gamble on your own hand and receive odds of 44.62% and a payout of 1 to 1.
- Banker - Bet on the dealer’s hand and receive odds of 45.86% and a payout of 0.95 to 1.
- Tie - Try your luck and wager on a tie, the odds for this bet are 9.52% with a payout of 8:1.
As you can see the banker bet gives you the best chance of winning but if you want to quickly grow your bankroll the tie wager provides the highest payout.
Baccarat House Edge
Apart from playing optimal blackjack and video poker strategy, online baccarat has the lowest house edge of any casino game. Check out the house edge for the 3 unique bets below:
- Player - 1.24%
- Banker - 1.06%
- Tie - 14.36%
While you can make 3 bets in baccarat serious players only consider betting on the player or the banker with most opting for the banker due to the slightly lower edge.
Live Baccarat Side Bets
In Baccarat online games you can make a variety of different side bets. These side bets can make the game more exciting and help you chase some big payouts. Common side bets include:
- Sum bonus - win when the hand value is under 5 or over 14
- Dragon bonus - gamble on the banker of player to have a higher hand
- Small/big - small wins if cards dealt number 4, big wins if 5 or 6 cards are dealt
- Pairs - win if your hand forms a pair
While side bets can add some thrill and help you win big jackpots they typically have a much higher house edge than standard wagers.
Live Baccarat Providers
The best baccarat game providers include world-class software developers such as:
- Evolution Gaming - Evolution is the industry leader when it comes to live games and is constantly developing new baccarat versions.
- Ezugi - Ezugi’s baccarat titles are available on both desktop and mobile and allow players to chat with dealers and make a range of different side bets.
- NetEnt - Originally known for their slots NetEnt has created a world-class live baccarat game known for its HD streams and cool casino studio background.
- Microgaming - Microgaming was one of the first online casino software companies and continues to produce the very best games. Their baccarat studio is based in Canada and is played with 8 decks.