The Present & Future Of Baccarat

Circumstantial evidence seems to suggest that baccarat is a game that has its roots in 13th century Italy. While these origins are unclear, we do know that an Italian, Felix Falguiere, is credited with taking these early concepts and creating the first modern variant of baccarat using tarot cards. From those murky beginnings, European gamers adopted the game before it eventually spread across to North America and Asia.

Today, baccarat is one of the most popular games in US casinos, and without doubt the leading revenue generator in Macau’s casino economy. This popularity has led to online casinos in the UK and beyond offering various forms of baccarat. From the traditional to the exotic, baccarat is the third most popular table game online, and a great alternative to the usual slotsblackjack and roulette.

Types Of Baccarat Online

When it comes to the best UK baccarat sites, the main variants you’ll find are:

Mini Baccarat

Based on American baccarat rules (dealer’s card is turned face up to increase game speed), this variant is basically a small stakes affair with simplified tables and betting starting from as little as £0.10 per round.

Live Baccarat

Hosted by live dealers via video links, these games follow the standard rules and typically allow you to bet between £1 and £1,000+.

Punto Banco

The most common baccarat game variant, Punto Banco is played using the rules we’ve described and will be available for both high stakes and low stakes at the best online casinos.

How To Play Baccarat

Whatever baccarat game you play, the first round of action will have a notable difference. Instead of forcing you to bet on your own hand and nothing else, the rules of baccarat allow you to bet on your hand (player hand) or the dealer’s hand (bank hand).

From this, the aim of the game is to bet on the hand you think will make the best total which, in this instance, is 9 or 8. Now, because the aim of the game is to make 9 (the best total), baccarat cards are valued in the following ways:

  • Ace = 1
  • 2-9 = Face value of the card
  • Picture Cards = 0

Based on these values, a hand’s score is determined by the right-hand digit of the two-card total. For example, if the player hand was comprised of 2 + 7, the total would be 9. This would give them a score of 9 because that’s the right-hand digit. In contrast, if the player hand was 7 + 7, the total would be 16 which would make their score 6 (because 6 is the digit on the right).

After placing a bet on the hand you fancy to win, a total of four cards will be dealt: two for the player, two for the bank. At this point, if either hand has an 8 or a 9, they’re declared the winner of the coup (if the other hand can’t match or beat it).

The draw…

If, however, neither hand has one of those totals, a draw takes place. The drawing conditions in a game of online baccarat include:

  • If player hand totals 0 to 5, they get to draw another card
  • If player hand totals 6 or 7, they don’t get a card (they stand)
  • If either hand has 8 or 9, they win and the coup is over.

At this point, if the player stands, the dealer can use the same set of drawing rules. However, if the player draws a third card, then the bank is bound by the following conditions:

  • If the player hand draws a 2 or 3, the bank draws with 0 to 4 and stands with 5 to 7.
  • If the player hand draws 4 or 5, the bank draws with 0 to 5 and stands with 6 to 7.
  • If the player hand draws 6 or 7, the bank draws with 0 to 6 and stands with 7.
  • If the player hand draws 8, the bank draws with 0 to 2 and stands with 3 to 7.
  • If the player hand draws an ace, 9, 10, or face-card, the bank draws with 0 to 3 and stands with 4 to 7.

Once the above process is complete, the dealer will announce the winning hand and pay out the necessary money to the player.

Baccarat Odds And Payouts

Top Three Baccarat Tips

Before you rush off and start playing baccarat for real money, here are three tips you can use to improve your chances of success:

Play For Free

When you follow our secure links to the top online baccarat sites, you’ll be able to play for free. Using these games to master the basics and practice certain strategies is the best way to get ahead of the curve without busting your bankroll.

Always Bet on the Bank

As we’ve said, the bank hand has the best odds. Even though you’ll pay a 5% commission on each win, the house edge is still better when you choose this baccarat bet.

Don’t Blow Your Roll

Baccarat is a high-paced game and you don’t want to bet too much, too soon when you first start to play. To ensure you don’t blow your roll, we suggest you stake no more than 3% of your total bankroll on a single session. So, if you have £1,000 to play with, you should bet no more than £30 per session.

If you can keep these baccarat tips in mind when you join one or two of our top rated baccarat sites, you should find that this quickly becomes one of your favourite casino games.