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How To Play Baccarat

If you are interested in learning how to play baccarat, you may already know that it is usually played in a separate casino area away from the more common games like blackjack, craps or roulette. The table is about the size of a craps table with three dealers and room for about 12 to 14 players.

Learning how to play baccarat couldnít be easier. There are only two bets to make in Baccarat - banker of player; banco or punto and the rarely used ďstandoffĒ or tie. In some casinos, the players deal the cards in turn and other casinos have a dealer deal the cards. When playing online Baccarat there is a virtual dealer.

Every player may bet on either banco or punto. The dealer usually bets on banco. Players may choose not to deal and pass the shoe to the next player. The shoe doesnít pass to a new player until the bank wins.
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Two hands are dealt and players bet on which one will win or if they will tie. Betting is similar to betting on red or black at roulette. The payoff is even at 1:1. The standoff bet pays 8:1 or 9:1. The only difference between the bets is that a win on a banco bet will cost you a 5% commission or tax from the casino.

The banco winning bets are taxed because the bank will win more often than the punto. Every hand has a minimum of two and a maximum of three cards. The dealer deals two face-down cards and tucks them under the shoe. The dealer then gives the player with the biggest bet on punto two face-down cards.

The punto player will then look at the cards and give them back to the dealing player. The dealing player turns over the cards of both hands and one of the casino dealers announces the winner.

If a hand totals 8 or 9, itís called a natural and no further cards are dealt. If it is not a natural, then the casino dealer may instruct the playing dealer to deal a third card depending on the totals of each hand. The third card action follows a certain set of rules used by the casino.

When the dealing is over, the hand with the highest hand wins. The casino dealers collect the losing bets and pay out the winning ones. The player who deals the cards doesnít give the payouts. They are just like any other player, playing against the house.

Baccarat Rules

There arenít many baccarat rules but if you are learning how to play baccarat you must learn them. Baccarat is usually played with a six deck or eight deck shoe. All cards with a face and tens have a value of 0. Cards less than 10 are counted at their face value. Aces are worth 1. Suits donít matter. Only single digit values count. Any count that totals a double digit drops the left digit. For example 15 is 5 and 25 is 5.

To start the game players may bet on either banco or punto or standoff. Two cards are given to each; first to the player then the banker. The object is to bet on the hand you think will win.

Based on the following three card rules, a third card may be dealt to each of the banco and punto. You donít need to remember these rules to play as they are compulsory and automatic. Rarely are mistakes made.

Playerís Third Card Rule

If there is a total of 8 or 9 by either the punto or banco on the first two cards, no more cards are drawn. The hand is a natural and is over.

If the total of a playerís hand totals 5 or less, the player draws a third card.

If the player does not draw a third card, the bank will stand on 6 or higher and will draw another card on totals of 5 or less. If a third card is not taken by the player then the bankís 3rd card rule will determine if the bank draws a third card.

Bankís Third Card Rule

When the bank has a total of 2 or less, the bank takes another card, no matter what the playerís 3rd card is.

When the bank has a total of 3, the bank takes another card, unless the third card of the player was 8.

When the bank total is 4, the bank takes another card, unless the third card of the player is a 0, 1, 8 or 9.

When the bank total is 5, the bank takes another card, if the third card of the player was 4, 5, 6 or 7.

When the bankís total is 6 then the bank will take a third card if the third card of the player is a 6 or 7.

When the bankís total is 7, the bank stands.

Thatís it! If youíve read this whole page, youíve practically learned how to play baccarat. Now go put that knowledge into action!

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