Rules and Strategy

# Basic strategies when playing baccarat

It’s not an easy task to define a strategy for baccarat because it is a game of chance. Likewise it’s also difficult to pinpoint a specific set of tactics given that you don’t really need skill in order to play the game. Baccarat is played across several rounds that are completely independent of each other. Six to eight decks are arranged randomly on the table. This essentially means you cannot predict a definite order of how they will be dealt. Therefore each hand has the same chance of winning as its predecessor. Some players claim they have the perfect strategy but in truth this is just hearsay, a pretext even to get you to buy their book or visit their website.

## What to consider during the game

In a casino you generally have a board that displays all the cards that have been dealt, this is practical in the sense you don’t have to remember which cards have been dealt already. In reality to win at baccarat you need to use common sense. Firstly remember that the house always has the upper hand. Secondly if the house has just won the previous 5 or 6 games then you can be sure it’s going to win the next one also. Remember though there’s always a 50/50 chance in baccarat so concentrate on your game at all times.

Counting cards during a game is practically useless and is more likely to get you thrown out of the casino than help you win at baccarat. Most players will opt for a mathematical approach to the game because the bets are often 50/50 meaning either you or the banker will win. You will often see players use a martingale system of betting, which entails doubling the bet each time you lose. This can help in the long run to recoup money but it’s a double edge sword in that you can lose it all just as fast. Mathematical systems only really work short term in any case because the probability of losing always stays the same.

## The probability of winning

In baccarat the house edge is favourable for the players. The house only has a 1.4% advantage on even bets but they take a 5% commission on bet that the banker wins. This means that payouts are 0.95 to 1. The chance that the players hand will win is actually lower than that of it to lose, with the players winning 44.62% of the time and losing 45.85% in most cases. The third option is the tie, which sits at 9.53%. The pay out on a tie is 8-1 but the house has a huge advantage here at 14.4%. It’s better not to bet on a tie in most cases. When we take the tie into consideration, the bankers hand will hit around 51%, this is 1% above a simple heads or tails bet. The odds are only ever slightly in your favour but it’s the best course of action to take.