Baccarat is a classic casino game that’s associated with high stakes and luxury, but it can also be played on a more modest budget. The rules differ slightly depending on whether you’re playing the Punto Banco (where the outcome is pre-determined) or Chemin de Fer (where players can decide to take a third card) version of the game, but the basic principles are the same. To help you get started, here are six baccarat tips to help you play more successfully.
Whether you’re betting on the Player or Banker hand, the aim of any winning hand is to be closest to nine. This is determined by the final digit of the total when the number of pips (the dots on the cards that represent clubs, hearts, diamonds and spades) are added together. A winning Banker hand qualifies for a payout of 1 to 1, while those who correctly bet on the Player hand will see their stake paid out at odds of 8 to 1. A tied result is also possible, in which case your bet will be returned to you.
In addition to placing a bet on Banker, Player or Tie, there are a number of other wagers available at the baccarat table which you can make in order to add variety and increase your chances of winning. These side bets are usually offered at a minimum bet of $20-$25, though the amount can vary from casino to casino.
Another popular baccarat strategy is the Labouchere system, which involves writing down a series of numbers and adding your previous wager to the end of it. When you lose a hand, you move the sequence down two numbers, and when you win, you start again. The system is not without risk, and it’s recommended that you set a loss limit before starting to use it.
When all the cards are dealt, the Banker and Player hands will be compared to determine which one is closer to 9. A win by either the Banker or Player side will pay out, with the Player side usually paying out at a higher rate than the Banker. However, if both the Banker and Player hand total 9 or 8 then this is known as a “natural” and neither side will win.
In the event of a tie, your bet will pay out, although this is not guaranteed as neither the Banker nor the Player will win the hand. A tie bet pays out at a minimum of 8 to 1, although the payout odds can vary from casino to casino and even between different variants of the game. In addition, some casinos may charge a 5% commission on wins when you bet on the Banker side. A tie bet can also qualify for a higher payout when the first two cards deal a pair (player and banker). This is called a Banker Pair bet, and you will typically receive a 9 to 1 payout if you bet on this.