Baccarat is one of those games that evokes images of high-rollers in opulent casinos, with men in tuxedos and women in posh evening dresses laying down their chips as the dealer distributes cards. But don’t let this game’s mystique intimidate you- it’s an exciting, easy to learn card game that’s perfect for any level of player.
The objective of baccarat is to predict which hand will come closest to 9 points in total. Players place bets on either the Player, Banker or Tie before the cards are dealt. Each hand is dealt two cards. If the Player and Banker hands have a total of 8 or 9, it is known as a ‘natural’ and no third card is drawn. If the total is 6 or 7, a third card may be drawn.
In baccarat, the second digit of the sum of the two cards determines the score. The value of the Ace is determined by adding the value of each side – for example, an 8 and a Queen would have a score of 12 because 8 + 2 equals 12. The aim is to get as close to nine as possible without going over. If a hand has a total of more than nine, it is considered a loss.
Once all bets have been placed, the dealer will deal a single card to the Player box, then another to the Banker box. The game continues until each box has a pair of cards. Once the pair is dealt, if the bet on the Player wins, the game ends. If the bet on the Banker wins, the game continues. The game also has a third option, a bet on a tie, but this is rarely placed and has a much higher house edge than the other two bets.
Baccarat rules differ slightly depending on the establishment or platform and should be checked before playing. However, most online versions of this popular casino game have the same rules and offer similar minimum bets. A standard minimum bet in the US is $20-$25, though this can vary depending on where you are located.
Unlike other casino games, Baccarat doesn’t feature any wildcards or other special cards that can boost your odds of winning. But it does have a number of interesting side bets, including the Player Pair and the Banker Pair. These bets are placed before the cards are dealt and pay out at different odds. In the case of the Player Pair, the odds are 11:1 while the Banker Pair pays out at 5:1. Regardless of the type of side bet you choose, it’s important to understand how the game works so that you can make educated decisions about your wagers. This will increase your chances of winning.