Baccarat Basics


Baccarat is a card game that features a table with from seven to 14 seats and a dealer area. Two hands of cards are dealt and the one that is closest to nine wins. A standard 52-card deck is used, but only the value of the number and the Ace are important. Picture cards and tens are worth zero points, while cards numbered from 2 through 9 have their pip values and the Ace equals one point.

A favored pastime of many high rollers, the game is popular in casinos around the world and has even made an appearance in several movies. Most recently it was featured in the 2007 film Rush Hour 3, where James Carter, played by Jackie Chan, attempts to rob a casino in Paris while playing chemin de fer with his girlfriend Genevieve (played by Michelle Yeoh).

Although it is often seen as a high-roller’s game, baccarat is relatively easy to play and can be enjoyed by players of all budgets. The main wagering options are to bet on either the Player or Banker hand. It is also possible to place a Tie bet but it is not recommended to do so as it offers irresistible odds but carries a very high house edge.

The game is typically played with eight decks of cards shuffled together but the rules vary from online to offline casinos. There are also various side bets available, although these should be avoided as they cost more than the main wagers and have a high house edge.

As the game gained in popularity, it started to be played in Europe. In the 19th century, the game was brought to France where it became popular amongst elite gamblers. It was then introduced to North America where it became known as Punto Banco.

In a baccarat game, the dealers deal two cards each to the Banker and Player hand. A third card is occasionally dealt to either hand, but the winner is determined by whichever is closer to nine. The Banker hand wins if the total is a double digit while the Player hand wins if the total is a single digit.

Baccarat is a very simple game to play and the only real skill involved is placing your bets correctly. There are only three major bets you can place and they are all pretty straightforward. If you want to make a bigger bet, you can place a Super Six bet which pays out at 12x your bet amount if the Banker hand wins with a score of 6 or less.

The best way to improve your baccarat gameplay is to practice. You can find a variety of free games in our expert casino commendations which allow you to play this game for fun without risking any of your own money. Just remember to set limits on your betting amounts and playing time to avoid gambling addiction. We recommend reading our Responsible Gambling Guide for tips and advice.