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Are you looking for a game with a low house edge and easy to play? If so baccarat may be an ideal game for you. The house edge on the best bet is only 1.07% and playing is almost as simple as betting on the toss of a coin.
Procedure of Play
The deal will rotate around the table, much like the dice rotate around the craps table. If a player does not want to deal they may pass the shoe to the next player. The same person will keep dealing as long as the banker keeps winning. The person dealing will put two cards, face down, tucked under the shoe, and give the player with the greatest bet on the player the other two cards, face down. This player then looks at the cards and then gives them back to the player who is dealing. Then the player who is dealing will turn over the cards and one of the casino dealers will announce the totals. Depending on the totals the dealer may then instruct the person dealing the cards to deal a third card. Finally the dealers will pay winning wagers and collect losing ones out of the dealer's tray. The player who actually deals is not assuming any financial responsibility of the other players bets, unlike pai gow, and is just turning over cards.
- Baccarat is played with eight decks of cards. Each numbered
card less than ten is worth its face value, aces are worth 1, and tens and
face cards are worth 0. The suit does not matter.
- Play begins by all players betting either on the 'player',
'banker', or a tie. I put player and banker in quotes because that is the
correct terminology but they do not necessarily represent the dealer or the
- After all bets are down the dealer gives two cards each to
the player and the banker. The score of the hand is the right digit of the
total of the cards. For example if the two cards were an 8 and 7, then the
total would be 15, and the score would be a 5. The scores will always range
from 0 to 9 and it is impossible to bust.
- A third card may or may not be dealt to either or both the
player and the dealer depending on the following rules.
- If either the player or the banker has a total of an 8
or a 9 they both stand. This rule overrides all other rules.
- If the player's total is 5 or less then the player
hits, otherwise the player stands.
- If the player stands, then the banker hits on a total
of 5 or less. If the player does hit then use the chart below to
determine if the banker hits (H) or stands (S).
Player's Third Card 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 7 S S S S S S S S S S 6 S S S S S S H H S S 5 S S S S H H H H S S 4 S S H H H H H H S S 3 H H H H H H H H S H 2 H H H H H H H H H H 1 H H H H H H H H H H 0 H H H H H H H H H H
- If either the player or the banker has a total of an 8 or a 9 they both stand. This rule overrides all other rules.
- The score of the player and dealer are compared, the winner
is the one which is greater. Winning bets on the banker pay 19 to 20 (or
even money less a 5% commission), winning bets on the player pay 1 to 1,
winning bets on a tie usually pay 8 to 1.
You may wonder how the dealer collects the 5% commission on winning banker bets. If they did so every hand it would involve a lot of change and slow down the game. To avoid this during the course of play the dealer will pay even money to winning banker bets and consider the 5% an IOU. As the dealer plays through an eight deck shoe he/she will keep track of the commissions every player owes. At the end of the shoe or when a player wants to leave mid-shoe the dealer will collect on the commissions. Make sure you don't run out of money with outstanding commissions.
The House Edge
Probabilities in 8-deck Baccarat Bet Combinations Probability House
45.86% 1.06% Player 2,230,518,
44.62% 1.24% Tie 475,627,426,
Note: If the tie bet pays 9:1 the house edge on that bet drops to 4.80%.
One and Six Deck Baccarat
Probabilities in 6-deck Baccarat Bet Combinations Probability House
45.87% 1.06% Player 392,220,492,
44.63% 1.24% Tie 83,552,962,
9.51% 14.44% Probabilities in single deck Baccarat Bet Combinations Probability House
45.96% 1.01% Player 6,548,
44.68% 1.29% Tie 1,372,
4% Commission Baccarat
Where to Play Baccarat
Commission Free BaccaratThe Atlantic City Hilton offers a version of the banker bet in baccarat which pays even money but only wins 1 to 2 odds on a winning total of 6. The house edge on the banker bet is 1.623%. As usual gimmicks do not pay as well as the regular game, and this game is no exception.
I have also heard of a variant in Singapore where there is no commission but a banker win of 8 pays 1 to 2. This has a house edge of 4.07% on the banker bet.
- Baccarat is played with eight decks of cards. Each numbered card less than ten is worth its face value, aces are worth 1, and tens and face cards are worth 0. The suit does not matter.