bookmark_borderBaccarat Basics


Baccarat is a casino game that requires little or no technical skill and can be found in the high stakes sections of European and Nevada casinos. The game is played with either three or eight decks of cards and involves betting on a player hand, a banker hand, or a tie. Two cards are dealt to each hand, and whichever is closer to nine wins. There are a number of other side bets in baccarat that can also pay out, but their payouts tend to have low odds of landing and higher house edges.

Baccarat tables vary in size, but they all feature from seven to 14 seats and a dealer’s area. The players are not allowed to handle the cards or deal them themselves. Instead, a croupier deals the cards from a shoe that holds anywhere from three to six standard decks of 52 cards. A croupier also keeps track of the winning bets and loses bets by using a specialized table called a Baccarat tableau.

A baccarat tableau features a player’s area, a banker’s area, and a box for the croupier to stand behind. The player’s area contains a large area for placing chips. In some versions of the game, a third card is dealt to the hand and a third area for placing bets on a tie. In most cases, a player’s bet must match the banker’s bet in order to win.

One of the most common mistakes new players make in baccarat is betting solely on the banker. While the odds of winning are higher if you bet on the banker, it’s important to understand that the banker and player hands can both hit streaks. In addition, the 5% commission charged by the bank on winning bets means that you’ll have a smaller percentage of your winnings to take home.

Most baccarat games feature only two major bets – the Player and the Banker. The objective is to guess which hand will be closest to nine. The Banker’s hand is dealt two cards and the Player’s is dealt one. If the total of the two hands is nine, you win a payout of 1:1. If the hand is a 10 or a 9 then a third card will be drawn. If the total is eight or higher, it’s known as a “natural” and no third card is drawn.

A few casinos will offer unique side bets on baccarat. These bets can pay out big payouts, but they often have low odds of landing and a high house edge. Before making a side bet, check its payouts and the house edge to determine if it’s worth the risk for your bankroll. Ideally, you should avoid these bets altogether. If you do bet on a side bet, you should bet only with the money you can afford to lose. Otherwise, you may find yourself running out of funds before you get the chance to make a winning bet.