The Basics of Baccarat


Baccarat is a card game that has long been popular with high rollers. It’s one of the most lucrative games in casinos, generating more profits for Macau casinos than Las Vegas Strip casinos do for slots alone. Baccarat is a very simple game to learn, and the rules are relatively straightforward. The objective of the game is for players to place wagers on either the Player hand, the Banker hand or a tie. Players may choose to bet as little or as much as they wish on any of these betting boxes, however their total must fall within the minimum and maximum permitted table stakes as shown on the baccarat table.

When a hand reaches a value of eight or nine the game is over and all placed bets are paid. The player’s and the Banker’s hands are dealt from a shoe with six or eight cards, and both sets of cards are face up. There are from seven to 14 seats around the baccarat table, and each seat has an area for placing bets on player, banker, or tie. The Player and Banker hands are always the first two to be dealt, while the third hand if called is dealt last.

The cards are worth their face value, with Aces counting as one point. Picture cards and Tens equal zero points, while all other numbers count as their face value plus the ace. When a hand reaches a double digit number, only the second digit counts as its value. For example, a five and an eight equals 15 points.

In addition to the player and banker bets, most baccarat tables offer a Tie bet. This bet is typically offered at odds of 8 to 1 against the Banker, although some places offer slightly better odds of 9 to 1. Many casino patrons confuse this with a bet on the Player or Banker having three of a kind in their hand, which pays out much less (75:1 at the Bellagio for example).

There are several methods to calculate a winning total for Baccarat, and the most popular is the system. This is based on the theory that a player should never bet more than two units of their total bankroll per round, and that they should always start at the beginning of the round. A reinvention of this strategy, the 1-3-2-4 system, is also gaining popularity amongst Baccarat players.

Most baccarat players use the bead plate to keep track of the score, but this isn’t required by law. In fact, a bead plate can be replaced by an electronic display. This is why some baccarat players have taken to calling the bead plate other things, like the cube road, dice road, marker road, and the baby pig road. Some even believe that the bead plate is a mystical device. Regardless of its name, though, the bead plate is an important part of Baccarat. It allows the player to know what the score is before it’s announced.