Looking for the secrets of perfect Baccarat strategy? Ready to win at Baccarat every time you step up to the table? We have good news for you. Unlike some other casino games, you can actively follow a simple Baccarat strategy to shrink the house odds to barely over 1%.
When you play Baccarat in live casinos you'll see a lot of players around the table writing down the outcome of every hand. In fact, the casino often even provides players with pen and paper to help them out with their note-taking. What are those players doing? Well, trying to see trends and patterns in the game. In online casinos, the software sometimes shows the results of previous hands for the same reason – to help players see trends. Is this actually a winning baccarat strategy? Can you really improve your chances of winning by recording past hands and looking for trends? The short answer: No. Of course not. If it was, do you think casinos would encourage players to take notes? In fact, making players see patterns in the game only helps the casino because people get caught up in the pattern - and away from optimal Baccarat strategy.
Quick strategy for Baccarat
As illustrated in the baccarat rules section there are three types of bets in baccarat:
The first two offer decent odds for the player whereas the latter is a real sucker bet. If you want to minimize the house advantage as much as possible, bet the banker. The casino will only have a 1.17% edge. If you feel the need to mix it up, bet the player where the house has a 1.36% edge. If you feel like losing money, bet tie. On this wager the house advantage escalates to 14.12%. In other words: Always bet the banker bet.
There's an obvious similarity between blackjack and baccarat strategy: both are card games in which a dealer draws cards from a shoe. In blackjack, we know that a player can gain an edge over the casino by counting cards and determining when the deck is stacked with cards in favor of the player. It would be easy to think that the same is true in baccarat. Unfortunately, it isn’t. Gambling experts and mathematicians have tried to count cards as an effective baccarat strategy since the very beginnings of the game but they’ve come to the conclusion that while it’s possible to lower the house advantage, it requires quite complicated calculations and the edge is only reduced by a fraction of a percent. So, for the regular gambler, counting cards in baccarat is not an option. And for the maths whiz, it’s pretty much not worthwhile. If you want to show off your mathematical prowess it would be far better for you to cross the casino floor to the blackjack table instead.
If you look around online for baccarat strategy tips you'll find a lot involving what's called "progressive betting systems." These all illustrate different ways in which to increase your wager when a hand is over. Out of all of them, the Martingale system is probably the most popular. When using the Martingale system players double their bets after every loss; so when they finally win, the profit is the same as the size of the first wager. Other popular progressive systems are the Labouchere System, the Paroli System, the 1-3-2-6 system etc. There are tons of them and they work in similar ways. You basically increase your wagers to make up for losses. The 1-3-2-4 or 1-3-2-6 systems show you how to make four consecutive bets. So you start with a $1 bet, then bet $3, $2 and $4 (or a comparable scale of your betting unit) on each consecutive bet. If you lose a bet you start over. If you win, you progress through the sequence. If you win all four bets then you go back and start the sequence all over again. The idea behind it is you're virtually guaranteed to break even.
Unfortunately, the main problem with these systems is that they don’t eliminate the house advantage. What they do is basically give you a number of small profits and, if you play long enough, one big loss. By then, you’re usually done with the system; you’re probably done with baccarat altogether. So the system itself doesn’t eliminate the house advantage. In the long run, using a system has no impact on your game whatsoever. The dangerous thing, though, is that it can make you believe that you’re on to something, that you might be able to beat the game this way. So if you're looking for a winning baccarat strategy, disregard the so-called baccarat-system experts.
Which Baccarat Strategy System is Best?
The first thing that is important to remember when it comes to baccarat strategy is that the player has to make the effort to follow it word for word and action for action. Baccarat strategy is like the strategy employed in most casino games – only effective if used properly. Decide how much you’re willing to lose AND how much you have to win to stop playing. If you lose money, walk away when you’ve reached your limit. If you win, do the same. This will probably shorten your gambling sessions considerably, but if you carry on playing when you’re winning, the house edge will eventually grind you back to red numbers. It might sound boring but this is the sad truth. Even with the best of the best baccarat strategy, there is an edge that just you can’t get around.
All players love a bit of choice and variety to keep them on their toes. That’s exactly what the Mini Baccarat Strategy aims to give players. When it comes to Mini Baccarat Strategy there are 5 bets that you can make. Out of those 5, there are only two worth getting to know better. Both the banker and player bets have excellent payout rates which range from 98.5%–99%, however, the tie, banker air and player pair bets have a horrific payout of less than 90% which as we all know is pretty bad even by casino terms. The precise odds are marginally different for Mini-Baccarat games that use a single deck instead of a full shoe but, well, pretty much the same principles apply.
- Single Deck Mini-Baccarat Games
Despite the fact that the odds for single deck games differ, the strategies remain basically the same with one big difference. In the original version of Baccarat, you can play with the player or banker bet whenever you want without this affecting the payout amount. When it comes to mini-Baccarat strategy with a single deck, it pays more to stick to the banker bet exclusively because the gap with the player bet is larger. While the baccarat house edge for the banker bet is 1.01%, the player bet is 1.29%. Now, while this may appear to be a meagre amount, it’s actually more than a 27% difference in relative terms.
- Observing Trends
Ironically, one of the best means to get ahead in Mini Baccarat Strategy is to try to observe trends. While it always pays to stick to the player and banker bets, it is important to keep your attention on when the value of the player hand gets higher than the value of the banker hand – it’s at this point that you need to change from the banker bet to the player bet.
When you play online as opposed to at live casinos you'll find that there are a number of marked differences. Online play has been known to offer much lower minimum bets. This will inevitably change the number of bets you are willing and able to place. In a live casino your budget might not allow for a risky tie bet but if you can place lower minimum bets online you may be able to take an extra risk every now and again. The sheer number of Baccarat hands you can play online also goes up so you should make proper allowances for your bankroll.
What are the best Baccarat bets?
If you're after the best bet in Baccarat, it is undoubtedly the banker bet. The bet to avoid at all costs is the tie bet. Only make this bet if you're feeling particularly lucky,
How are Baccarat variants different from each other?
The most common Baccarat variant is mini-Baccarat where the dealer will take all the cards himself which means the game will be played at a much faster pace. In some high roller rooms, you might find 'big table baccarat' which gives players the opportunity to be more active participants. Players of 'big table baccarat' take turns in dealing cards and the player and banker hands are kept concealed until the person dealing looks at the cards him or herself. Despite the fact there is more freedom for players, it is important to note that the casino itself is still the entity which has to pay out the winners.
Can you try card counting with Online Baccarat?
As we discussed before, card counting doesn't really work when it comes to Baccarat. That said, there is a tiny teeny chance that you might be able to lower the house edge slightly if you had to card count in a brick and mortar casino. The same cannot be said for Online Baccarat as the cards are reshuffled after each and every hand which means that any card counting attempt will be completely in vain.
Play Baccarat at an Online Casino
Playing baccarat online using proper baccarat strategy can give you the opportunity to win loads of cash. If you'd like to play baccarat the right way, you should check out our toplists and casino reviews and choose a great casino to use your newly learned baccarat strategy at; you won’t regret it!