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Baccarat rules for beginners: complete guide
Baccarat rules for beginners: complete guide

21/12/2023 18:00

Playing baccarat

Baccarat, a card game infused with elegance, has become one of the most popular card games in the world. It is a simple game to learn, yet it offers enough of a challenge for experienced players. In this article, we explain how to play baccarat so you can get started right away.

‘Baccarat Rules’ highlighted in gold with a baccarat table on the background.

The origins of Baccarat

Baccarat originated in the 15th century in Italy under the name "baccara," and has made an intriguing journey through history. The game evolved from earlier Italian card games and spread throughout Europe, where it quickly gained popularity. Particularly among the French aristocracy, who embraced it as a symbol of luxury and status.

During the 19th century, Baccarat reached England, where it transformed into several variants such as "Punto Banco." This variant has its own unique rules and is still popular in modern casinos. During the same period, Baccarat traveled across the Atlantic to America, where it was initially played exclusively in high-stakes saloons before becoming more accessible.

Thanks to online casinos, Baccarat is now accessible worldwide, allowing players from all over the world to enjoy the charm and excitement of this classic table game. Whether you prefer the traditional setting of a land-based casino or the conveniences of online play, Baccarat remains a timeless game.

What is Baccarat

Baccarat is a card game known for its sophistication. It is played with standard card decks and has three possible outcomes in each round: player wins, bank wins or it becomes a tie. As a player, therefore, you must bet on the outcome you believe will occur.

Goal of the game

The goal of baccarat is to get as close to the 9 as possible. The hand that comes closest to the 9 wins the round.

Baccarat game rules

In baccarat, there are two hands to bet on: the player (Punto) and the bank (Banco). Each round begins with the dealing of two cards to both hands. The value of the cards is added together and determined as follows:

- Ace: 1 point

- Ten, Jack, Queen, King: 0 points

- All other cards: their nominal value

For example, if the player is dealt a 2 and a 5, the player has a hand of 7 points. If the player is dealt, say, a king and a 4, the player has a hand of 4 points, since the king has a value of 0.

If the total of the two cards exceeds 9, only the last digit is considered. For example, if the player receives a 9 and an 8, the total is 17. The player's hand then becomes 7.

Third card at Baccarat

The third card rule in Baccarat is a set of strict rules that determine whether an extra card should be dealt to the player, the banker, or both, depending on the total value of the first two cards. It is the most complicated rule of the game, but fortunately, you don't have to learn this rule by heart. In fact, the croupier always gives you the result so you can't make mistakes on this.

Here are the basics of the third card rule in Baccarat:

For the player:

- Player has a total of 0-5: the player receives a third card.

- Player has a total of 6-7: the player stands (no extra card is dealt).

- Player has a total of 8-9: the player stands and automatically wins; no third card for the player or banker.

For the banker:

The banker's decision depends on the player's hand and the value of the banker's first two cards:

If the player does not receive a third card (stand):

- The banker draws a third card if his total is 0-5.

- The banker stands if his total is 6-7.

- The banker stands and automatically wins if his total is 8-9.

If the player receives a third card:

- The banker draws a third card based on specific rules that vary depending on the value of the player's third card.

Third card rules for the banker (if needed):

- If the banker has a total of 0-2: the banker always draws a third card.

- If the banker has a total of 3: the banker draws a third card unless the player's third card is an 8.

- If the banker has a total of 4: the banker draws a third card if the player's third card is 2-7.

- If the banker has a total of 5: the banker draws a third card if the player's third card is 4-7.

- If the banker has a total of 6: the banker draws a third card if the player's third card is 6-7.

- If the banker has a total of 7: the banker stands.

These rules can seem very complex, but in practice, they are always administered by the dealer in the casino. As mentioned, you do not need to memorize these rules, but understanding the basics does add to your enjoyment and involvement in the game.

Payout

By now you know that the two most important bets in Baccarat are the player bet and the banker bet. If you bet on the player and win, you receive a payout of 1 to 1, which means you win as much as you wagered. If you bet €5 and win, you will thus receive €10. If you lose, of course, you lose your bet.

If you bet on the banker, the payout is also 1 to 1, but often you have to pay a small commission to the casino, usually around 5% of your winnings. If you bet €5 and win, you will thus receive €9.75 in this case. In case of a loss, you lose your bet at no extra cost.

Another betting option is betting on a tie. Payouts for a tie vary but are usually around 8 to 1. If you bet €5 and win, you will receive €45 in case the payout is 8 to 1. If you win a tie bet, you receive a significant payout, but if you lose, you lose your bet.

Strategies

There are several strategies you can use to increase your chances of winning at baccarat. One of the most popular strategies is the Martingale strategy. This strategy involves doubling your bet after each round of losses. This can lead to big wins, but also big losses if you are unlucky.

Another popular strategy is the Fibonacci strategy. This strategy is similar to the Martingale strategy, but you don't double your bet each round, but according to the Fibonacci sequence. This sequence starts with 0 and 1, and then the next numbers are formed by adding the two previous numbers together.

Baccarat tips

Here are a few more tips to improve your Baccarat game:

Start playing with low stakes until you have mastered the rules of the game. This will allow you to become familiar with the dynamics of the game without taking significant financial risks. As you gain more experience and become more comfortable, consider gradually increasing your bets.

Manage your bankroll, keep track of your winnings, and be aware of your loss limit. It is essential to play responsibly and not go along with the urge to make up losses. Set a clear limit for yourself in what you are willing to lose and be prepared to quit once you reach this point. Moreover, it is important to take your winnings and not bet them again at the risk of losing them again.

Avoid using strategies that can lead to large losses. Although some players believe in employing specific strategies in baccarat, it is important to remember that it is a game of chance and no strategy offers guaranteed success. Over-reliance on strategies can lead to significant losses. Remain realistic about the random nature of the game and be careful about betting large sums of money based on strategic considerations. Moreover, each round is completely independent of any previous round and the outcome of each round is totally random because of the certified Random Number Generator (RNG) that the games use at PepperMill Casino.

Play free Baccarat online

At PepperMill Casino, you have the opportunity to try all Baccarat games for free in demo mode. This feature allows players to understand the rules of the game, test strategies and explore the overall gaming experience without wagering real money.

Using the demo mode allows you to learn the game at your own pace and develop your skills. It is a valuable opportunity to understand the different betting options and learn the card values. You can also get to know other games like Roulette or Blackjack better this way. Once you have mastered the game and feel confident enough, you can choose to switch to playing with real money for the thrill of actual winnings.