Play Real Money Baccarat

Real money baccarat has special prestige among the casino table games, though its reputation as an elite game is based more on it exclusivity than its complexity. In fact, most versions of baccarat you’ll end up playing in live casinos have no skill factor at all. The game offers a good house edge for a game with few strategy secrets to memorize, which is why the traditional game is played in a roped-off section of the casino for high stakes. Traditionally, baccarat was offered as a game for high rollers, much like the $100 per spin slot machines often have better odds than they $1 per spin counterparts. Add in tuxedos and evening gowns and the game gained a mystique that’s lasted into the 21st century.

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Online Baccarat Real Money

Online casinos always offer one or more forms of baccarat in their online software package. The Internet package plays more like the automatic versions of the game you’d find in the brick-and-mortar casinos. The house edge is still low for a game which doesn’t use a lot of strategy. Beware any auto-play or quick-play features you might be offered. This just increases the times per hour you’ll face the house edge, and takes more money out of your pocket (on average).

Live Baccarat Online

The best way to play baccarat online baccarat for real money is to play one of the live baccarat games. This doesn’t use a software package with a random number generator, but instead uses real people to produce the results of the game. These people are employees of the online casino or their software provider, and they came live using streaming video from a gaming studio somewhere out there in the world. These studios tend to be in the Baltic States in Eastern Europe–placed such as Tallinn, Estonia or Riga, Latvia.

The live dealers are trained professionals like the personnel in a land-based casino. You talk to them with Skype-style interfaces and they can reply. The camera stays on them at all times, so you never lose track of the cards. Online live baccarat for real money is the best way to enjoy one of the oldest casino games on your computer in the comfort of your own home.

History

In the 1980’s, the buzz about baccarat reached a point that Las Vegas casinos began offering a version designed for the rest of us plebeians. This game was called mini-baccarat. This was a stripped-down version of the game with a dealer instead of a banker, because the house banked the game. This meant that the deals came faster and more hands were played per hour, allowing the casino to collect more rake than it would on the conventional game. A similar version called midi-punto was designed by European operators.

Meanwhile, the French variant of the game, called “Chemin de Fer”, is still played in France. This game requires serious decisions to be made which affect the outcome of the game, so it has strategy aspects you must study. Along the way, a whole bunch of other variants have been created, including EZ baccarat, super 6 (or “punto 2000”), and baccarat banque. Over the course of this article, I’ll discuss each of these games and what you need to know when you’re playing them for real cash.

Basic Rules

The object of real money casino baccarat is to build a hand as close to 9 as possible. The hand ranks are different than most card games, but they’re intuitive, so you’ll know them in a matter of hands. All numbered cards except the 10 have a value of the number they display. Aces are worth 1 point. Tens, jacks, queens, and kings have no value (“0”), so they add nothing to your hand. If you reach 10, then the count starts over, so the count would go 0-1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-0-1-2-3 and so on. For example, a 9 and a 5 would be worth 4–not 14.

The rules of the game are easy to remember. These rules dictate when the player and the banker draw more cards and when they are barred from doing so. It might take some time to learn when you make certain plays, but the rules are rigid, so you won’t make mistakes when learning the game.

Punto Banco

“Punto banco” is the game you’re most likely to play when you gamble in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, or Macau. When I say you won’t need to know strategy to play baccarat, this is the game I’m talking about. The casino banks the game, while the dealer deals out both hands. This dispensed with a lot of the ceremony of the game, while making it play faster than the classic version. Gamblers can choose to bet on either the player or the banker hand, with no distinction made as a customer’s hand. Both hands are played out according to pre-set rules, called the “tableau”. In some countries, Tableau is the name some casinos give this version.

A multi-deck is built consisting of either four, six, or eight decks of cards. At the beginning of each hand, two cards are dealt to the banker and two to the player. The dealer or croupier often calls out the score to the gamblers at the table, so you might hear “Player 7, Banker 4”. Depending on the total, both sides either stand or hit. If either holds an 8 or 9, then a winner is declared. If both sides have a 7 or less, then more cards might be handed out. The player draws first, but only if their hand is 0 through 5. Thus, they stand pat on a 6 or 7. When the player stands pat, the banker follows the same rules: hitting on a 0 through 5 and standing on a 6 or 7.

Complicated rules determine when the banker draws, if the player drew a third cards. For instance, if the player drew a card and received a 2 or 3, then the banker draws when holding a 0 through 4 and stands on a 5 through 7. If the player drew a 4 or 5, then the banker hits on a 0-5 and stands on a 6-7. If the player drew a 5 or 6, then the dealer draws with a 0-6 and stands on a 7. If the player drew an 8, then the banker only draws when holding a 0 through 2. Finally, if the dealer drew a 9, 10, or face-card, then the banker draws when holding a 0-3 and stands when holding a 4 through 7. This might sound complex at first, but betters quickly get up to speed on the scenarios and, frankly, it doesn’t much matter if you do know the correct drawing patterns, because the results are out of your hands (it’s more enjoyable, though).

Las Vegas Punto Banco

On the Las Vegas Strip, this it the game played in private behind curtains, presumably to provide an additional layer of security. These games are often for high stakes, adding to the allure of the game.

Play Real Money Baccarat

To play this game in Las Vegas or Macau, you’ll likely have to play for higher stakes. If you want to play baccarat for real money on the Vegas Strip, but you don’t want to gamble on big sums of money, try out mini-baccarat.

Chemin de Fer

Chemin de Fer is the French game, so-named because the card originally were dealt in an iron box. This was before the inception of the 19th century railroad systems, so the etymology has no real connection. (“Chemin de fer” is also the French word for “railroad”.) In this game, the ability to be the banker rotates around the table, much like the honor of shooting the dice would in craps. You bank until you lose. In Chemin de Fer, the banker is actually a player who covers all the other players’ bets. Since many betters won’t want to make such large gambles, this explains in part the decision to make this a high dollar game. Players should know this game offers an advantage on the house edge for the banker, which is why many players prefer to be the banker. If you don’t like that option, you can pass the honors to the next gambler at the table.

Various rules cover this form of play. The dealer wagers what he or she wants. One other player may “go bank”, meaning they bet on the side of the banked hand and help cover the wagers. All other players (called “punters”) bet on the player hand. If these gamblers don’t wager enough money to cover the banker’s wager, other people standing around the table have the option to get in on the action.

Once this happens, the banker deals cards as the dealer would in punto banco. Gamblers have more options in this game, so strategy is a factor. Because of the hitting rules, the banker has a decided edge over the punter hand. To offset this huge advantage, the house takes a 5%. Even with the 5% commission in play, the banked hand has better odds, so you should wager on this option every single hand (if allowed). Some casinos offer a less than 5% commission on real money baccarat. When they do, this lowers the house edge from a banker’s perspective.

Baccarat Strategy

The strategy suggestions are simple for this game: bet the banked hand always. Never, under any circumstances, bet on the tie. Despite the big payouts, it’s a sucker bet.

Baccarat in the United States

Many states have brick and mortar casinos which now offer baccarat, including Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, and Louisiana. Other states, like Kentucky, don’t offer the game for one or more reasons–usually involving legalities of specific types of casino games.

Baccarat Questions and Answers

For years, baccarat was known as a casino game for the wealthy and elite. But this has largely changed over the past few decades, thanks to online baccarat and cheap mini baccarat tables in land-based casinos.

Given that online baccarat has helped popularize the game, more and more players have questions about baccarat today. That said, let’s answer some of the most-common questions about online baccarat below.

  • Any online casino with table games will allow you to play the game for free. This makes for great practice for when you want to play for real money in online or brick-and-mortar casinos.

    Simply find an online casino that offers table games, and click a baccarat table to start playing. Some casinos may require you to create an account, but this only takes a few minutes.

  • The first step is to choose a banking method that you can use from any prospective online casino. Next, supply this banking option with funds and you’ll be ready to make a deposit.

    Most online casinos allow you to play baccarat for as little as $1 per hand, which is much cheaper than land-based casinos.

  • The reason why online casinos can offer such low stakes is because they don’t have to pay dealers. Contrast this to land-based casinos, which must at least pay minimum wage to dealers, and they raise stakes to keep up with this cost.

  • Baccarat is one of the easiest table games from a strategy perspective because you only have to bet on the banker to win every single hand.

    This lowers the house edge to 1.06%, which is better than both the player bet (1.24% house edge) and tie bet (14.36% house edge).

  • Given that baccarat has one of the lowest house edges out of any casino game, you can beat baccarat in any given session.

    But as for beating online baccarat with any consistency, no advantage play method has ever been devised that’ll overcome the house edge.

  • Considering the low degree of baccarat strategy involved, some players like to use betting systems to overcome the house edge. The most-popular baccarat systems include the D’Alembert, Labouchere, and Martingale.

    While systems can help you win big profits in an individual session, none of them are designed to circumvent the long-term house advantage.

  • Some online casinos don’t include baccarat among games that are eligible for welcome bonuses due to the low house edge. But other casino do, so check out the ‘table games’ bonus to see if your casino offers a baccarat bonus.

    If you do find one, the wagering requirements are higher than slots welcome bonuses due to the low house advantage.

  • Most online casinos accept Bitcoin these days, so you’ll have no trouble playing internet baccarat with this cryptocurrency. In fact, many players are using Bitcoin because cashouts are made instantly, and you don’t have to deal with processing fees or waiting time.

  • Online baccarat is legal in almost every country, including the United States and Canada. Many internet casinos serve these countries, which makes it easy to play real money baccarat through your PC, smartphone, or tablet.

  • The two best baccarat tips are to consistently make the banker bet, and to watch your bankroll. For the latter, you’ll want to avoid betting systems and just concentrate on making wagers that you can afford until you get the hang of baccarat.

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