Baccarat is a casino game that’s usually played for high stakes. It’s also one of the most popular games in Macau, where it accounts for over 88 percent of the $33.2 billion in casino revenue.
The rules of baccarat are fairly simple and don’t require any complicated knowledge of casino games, making it a great choice for beginners. But there are a few things that you should know before starting to play this game.
1. There are two types of bets: player and banker.
When you bet on the banker, you’re betting that his hand will be closer to nine than the player’s. If you guess correctly, you’ll win a payout of 95% of your wager. If you’re betting on the player, you’ll win twice as much if his hand comes closest to nine.
2. You’ll need to pay a commission when betting on the banker.
A lot of people don’t like baccarat because they think the odds are against them. But if you understand the rules and make smart decisions, you’ll be surprised at how profitable this game can be.
3. The third card draw rule can be confusing, but it doesn’t mean you can’t play a winning hand.
Unlike blackjack where you have to memorize a whole bunch of rules, baccarat has standard house rules that determine which hand will need a third card and when it will be drawn.
4. The banker’s hand is worth 95% of the player’s bet.
While a winning Banker hand is worth 95% of the player’s wager, it does cost a percentage to bet on it. This commission is a significant part of why the house edge in baccarat is only 1.2 percent.
5. Count the points of the Bank and Player’s hands
There are a few simple tricks to help you count the points of both the Player and Bank hands in baccarat. The most important is to drop the first digit of each total to get the true value. This means that a total of nine will be dropped to 8 and so on, until you reach 10 or more.
6. Practice good stake management
The house edge in baccarat can be reduced if you practice proper stake management. This is especially the case if you’re playing in a high-stakes room. The best way to minimize your risk is by limiting your wager to 10 units per bet and a maximum of 200 units per session (followed by a break).
7. Follow the streak:
If you want to improve your chances at baccarat, follow the banker’s or player’s streak. This will give you a better chance of beating the house and increase your profits.
A streak is created by having a series of consecutive bankers or players and if it’s a long streak, it’s called a “dragon” by baccarat players. It can be a good strategy to bet on the banker or player when they’ve been streaking for longer than six consecutive hands, but only if you’re confident that your bet will win.