Baccarat Rules, Bets & Odds

Learn How to Play Baccarat

Casino players love the excitement, easy-to-remember rules, and cinematic touches associated with baccarat. To win and enjoy this classic casino game, you should master the rules of baccarat, the types of bets to play, and odds. Understanding the basics spells the difference between a winning experience and an unforgettable one.

Master the Rules of Baccarat

Like other casino games, understanding the rules is important when one wants to enjoy and potentially win. In baccarat online, you will use a simple set of rules and bets. These rules focus on the decks of cards used, the betting procedure, and the types of bets to play.

The Objective

In online baccarat, there are three potential bets: a Banker, the Player, or a Tie. Your objective in this game is to bet which hand gets the highest value in each round. The game’s magic number is ‘9’ and your initial hand of eight or nine is considered a natural.

Card Values

Playing cards are assigned values when playing baccarat. You can refer to the image below for a guide on how to assign points:

As you can see, cards from 2 to 9 retain their face values whole the royals get zero. The Ace in baccarat is counted as one. So if your hand features a ‘5’ and ‘3’, your total is an ‘8’.

What exactly “Baccarat” means

 The game baccarat is based on the Italian word ‘baccara’ which means zero.  This refers to the point that we assign to the royals.

Types of bets in baccarat

There are three types of bets to play in online baccarat: Player, Banker, or a Tie. These bets are self-explanatory, and they offer varying baccarat payouts and odds depending on the variant you play.  As such, you must know the right baccarat strategy to use based on the game’s variant and type of wager.

1. Bet on a player

You are betting on yourself or the Player’s side to get the best hand.

2. Bet on a banker

This is a wager on the Banker’s hand. A winning bet is often charged a 5% commission.

3. Pairs

Player pair

This is a type of baccarat bet where the first two cards of the player will be of the same number, or they are of the same suit. You get a payout of 11:1 for a winning bet.

Banker pair

This is the opposite of the Player’s pair where the first two cards of the Banker should be of the same suit or number.

Perfect pair

With this side bet, you are betting that both cards of either the Banker or Player are of the same suit or number.

4. Tie

If the Player and Banker end up with the same hand value, the round ends up in a tie. A winning Tie bet in baccarat is paid 8:1.

5. Big hand

In this side bet, you are betting that there are five cards on the table, or at least one of the players holds a third card.

6. Small hand

This is the opposite of the Big Hand bet where you are wagering that no player on the table has a third card, and there are four playing cards on the table.

7. Minimum/maximum bets

In online casinos, you can choose from different baccarat tables based on the number of players who can play and the betting limits. Two popular options are the mini-baccarat table and the full baccarat table or called the VIP table. The mini-baccarat table can seat up to seven players and have smaller betting limits. For example, you can bet a minimum of $1 per round which can work well for players who want to stretch their bankroll. Your VIP baccarat table, on the other hand, boasts higher betting limits which is best for high rollers and those with bigger bankrolls. If you are a beginner, we recommend that you start with the mini-baccarat. 

Other Baccarat side bets

3 Card Wins.

It’s a side bet for both the Banker and a Player. If you play this bet on either the Banker or Player and it wins using three cards, you win.

3 Giving 8

This is available in some casinos and pays 200:1. This side bet wins if the Banker’s initial two hands have a value of three, and the Player’s third card is an ‘8’.

4-5-6

You are betting on the combined cards of the Banker and Player. A winning bet on four cards pays 3:2 while five or six cards pay 2:1. </H4>

5 Treasures

This is composed of five side bets namely, the Fortune 7, Golden 8, Heavenly 9, Blazing 7s, and Cover All. The first three bets refer to the hand totals, the Blazing 7s win if both the Player’s and Bankers hand have a ‘7’ and the Cover All wins if any of the four side bet wins.

All Red/Black

It’s a bet that the Player’s hand features red cards or black cards. A winning all red bet pays 22:1 and blacks awards you with 24:1.

Banker Streak

You use this bet if you think that the Banker’s side will get at least four wins in a row.

Big and Small

A side bet on the combined number of cards of the Player’s and Banker’s hands.

Big Tiger

You win this bet if the Banker’s hand wins with a ‘6’ using three cards and loses in other outcomes.

Bad Beat Baccarat

This is a side wager that a Banker or Player’s hand will win by exactly one point.

Contrast Bonus Baccarat

It’s an exciting proposition bet that wins if all the cards of the Player are of the same color and the Banker’s card are all in the opposite color.

Even/Odd

As the term suggests, you are wagering whether the combined value of the two hands will be even or odd.

Golden Frog

This refers to four side bets with specific payouts. The first is any ‘8’ that beats any ‘6’ and this pays 25:1. The second is a 2-card ‘9’ that beats a 2-card ‘7’ and this pays 50:1. The third variant is the 3-card ‘9’ that beats a 3-card ‘1’ which pays 150:1. And the fourth is a 3-card ‘9’ that pays a 3-card ‘7’ that awards 200:1.

Kill the Ox/Tiger

Under baccarat rules, you win this wager if either of the two following outcomes will happen. First, if the Player’s hand has a 3-card total of ‘6’ or a Tie. Second, the Banker’s hand has a 3-card total of ‘7’ and or a Tie.

Ox 6

This baccarat side bet wins if the Player’s hand wins using a 3-card total of ‘6’ and this pays 40:1.

Small Tiger

It’s an extra wager that you can play and win if the ‘Banker’ wins with a ‘6’ with two cards.

Royal 9

This is called a progressive side bet where the base amount is set at $5. You can win if the Banker or Player’s hand has a ‘Royal 9’ which is a nine and a face card.

Side Totals

It’s a simple bet where you predict the total of both the Player’s and the Banker’s hand.

Tiger

This is a set of optional wagers that you can play in baccarat in conjunction with other existing wagers. The Tiger bets are the ‘Tiger’, ‘Big Tiger’, ‘Small Tiger’, ‘Tiger Tie’ and the ‘Tiger Pair’.

Tiger Pair

This side bet wins if the Banker’s or Player’s hand form a pair using the first two cards.

Dragon Bonus

In this side bet, you get a payout of your hand is a natural and you win by a large margin.

Dragon Dragon Progressive

This is a popular side bet in some Las Vegas casinos where payouts are based on the combined cards of both the Banker and the Player.

Duo Bao

Based roughly on the Chinese words that mean ‘many treasures’, Duo Bao is a variant that’s popular in Asia. This baccarat variant features several poker-inspired side bets.

Egalities

These side bets refer to specific Ties. The types of ties and payouts will depend on the casino where you are playing.

Either Pair

This side bet wins if either the Banker or Player has a pair on the first two cards.

First Two Banker/Player Cards Same Suit

A variation of Either Pair, this side bet wins if either the Banker’s or Player’s first two cards are of the same suit.

Jackpot Baccarat

This is a poker-based side bet that pays based on the poker value of the first two cards of both the Banker and Player. For example, a Mini Royal pays 250:1.

Lucky 6

It’s a popular side bet in commission-free baccarat that pays you 1:1 on the Banker’s hand winning with a ‘6’.

Lucky Nines

When playing this side bet, your payout is based on the number of nines between the Banker’s and Player’s first two cards and whether these are suited. For example, four nines pay 500:1.

Lucky 99

A side bet on multi-game machines where a wager wins if at least one side collects a natural nine.

Panda 8

This is a side bet on the popular EZ Baccarat where you don’t pay a commission on a Banker’s win.

The odds and payouts

In baccarat, each bet boasts a specific payout. Among the three main bets, a winning bet on a Tie offers a Tie awards the best payout of 8:1. Your winning bet on the Player pays 1:1 and 1:0.95 respectively. A winning Banker’s hand is subject to a 5% commission. In other variants, this commission is not present but there are slight variations in the baccarat rules.

On the table below you will find the different bets to play, the baccarat payouts, and odds. As you can see, the side bets offer the best baccarat payouts but they come with a higher house edge or lower odds of winning. For example, a Perfect Pair pays 25:1 but the house edge stands at 13.03%.

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Rule Variations

Although the primary objective in baccarat is to bet on either the Player, the Banker, or a Tie, there are other betting rules in place. The specific baccarat rules are in place depending on the type of variant you are playing. Some of the popular baccarat variants that are available in US casinos are Punto Banco, Chemin de Fer, No Commission Baccarat, and Mini Baccarat. They often differ in the number of participants, the choice of who acts as the dealer, and manner of play. For example, in classic baccarat games, a winning Banker’s bet charges a 5% commission. But in No Commission Baccarat, this rule is removed.

Drawing rules

Your hand in online baccarat is played out by following some basic rules. If the Banker or Player gets an ‘8’ or ‘9’ with the first two cards (natural), it wins (or ties), and a new round starts. Now, if the Player’s initial two cards are equal to 0 to 5, the baccarat rules say that he must draw a third card. If the first two Player’s cards are equal to ‘6’ or ‘7’, drawing a third card is not allowed and the Banker draws on a score of 0 to 5. You can check the table below on the drawing rules that are followed in this game.

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How to play baccarat – Breakdown of a round

1. Fund your Balance

Once you are aware of the different types of variants and the rules, then it’s time to hit the baccarat table! Make sure to fund your account by using your preferred payment option in your casino.

2. Place your bets

Once the account is funded, proceed to the ‘Games Lobby’ and look for the baccarat game you want to play. Before the round starts, you will decide on whether to bet on the Banker, Player, or a Tie. As discussed above, these bets boast different baccarat odds and payouts. Remember, bet only an amount that you can afford to lose!

3. The Dealer will now deal the cards

Once everyone on the table puts their bets, the dealer starts the round and deals the cards. The Banker and the Player get two cards each and an extra card may be dealt depending on their value.

The one I bet on got “Natural”!

If the first two cards are an ‘8’ or a ‘9’, then you hit a natural! You win the game and get a payout based on your bet.

4. Dealer counts the dealt cards

After all the cards are dealt, the dealer then counts the cards based on their assigned values. Based on the baccarat drawing rules, the dealer can draw an extra card and count again. For example, the Banker automatically draws a card for a hand value of ‘0’ to ‘2’. And when the value is ‘7’ to ‘9’, a third card is not drawn, thus the counting of cards immediately starts.

5. Payouts

Collecting a potential payout is the last part of every baccarat round. There are different possible baccarat payouts, and this will eventually depend on your betting decisions. The table below shows the payout that you will receive for a specific bet. For example, your winning Banker’s bet pays 1:0.95 and a Player’s bet gets 1:1.

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Keep in mind that the dealer will take a commission as well

In baccarat, bets have specific odds of winning or house edge. This means that whenever you make a bet on the baccarat table, the casino will always have a built-in advantage. For example, since the Banker’s bet has the lowest house edge or offers you the best chance of winning, the casino charges a commission for this.

Frequently asked questions

In this classic casino game, you will wager on either the Player, Banker, or a Tie. Your objective is to put your money on the side that will get the highest hand value on each round.
Among these three baccarat bets, your bet on a Tie offers the best payout of 8:1. However, this wager boasts a higher house edge of more than 14%.
Yes. In some baccarat variants, there is an option to play the side bets. For example, you can play the Perfect Pair, Even/Odd, or Contrast Baccarat Bonus.
Yes, you can play the No Commission Baccarat which is available in many US casinos.
Yes, most US online casinos allow their players to enjoy the game in the free demo.