Although it doesn’t quite have the player-base of classics like poker or blackjack, baccarat is a viable option for gamblers looking to test their luck elsewhere. If you’ve never played, or don’t fully understand the rules, you’re missing out on a great opportunity.
Plenty of misconceptions exist about all casino games, but because baccarat often flies under the radar, there is plenty of misinformation floating around. But you shouldn’t let those keep you from finding out how exciting and profitable this game can be.
In this article, I’ll get into some of the most common myths surrounding baccarat, and do my best to set the record straight.
1 – It’s Only for the Rich, High Roller Types
At one time, this myth was actually fact. For much of history, only the rich and wealthy aristocrats were wagering their endless money on games of baccarat. Today, however, all of that has changed.
Just like any other game, there are different tables where different betting limits are required. You may run into some situations where higher bets are required, but there’s absolutely no shame in trying your luck at a low-limit table.
Even those who frequently play baccarat advocate for tables where smaller bets are allowed. If you’re like most, losing a couple $100 hands might be the end of your day. Utilizing tables with small limits is a way to build up your bankroll without taking on so much of the high-roller risk.
The bottom line is that however you want to play, there’s a table that fits with your gambling budget. Don’t let the historical bias of baccarat being an elitist game get in the way – it’s not like that today!
2 – There Are Systems That Increase Your Chances of Winning
Baccarat, as I discussed above, has gained the reputation of being a high-roller casino game. With that has come plenty of people who have tried to manipulate its well-off players in hopes of making a few dollars of their own.
If you do any research on baccarat strategies, it’s likely that you’ll come across plenty of sites claiming to have can’t-lose strategies that will make you rich if you give them a chance. The catch? These strategies come at a price.
It’s important to remember that anyone claiming that they have a secret strategy is simply trying to pull one over on you. Never pay for these tips promising huge profits…especially in baccarat where luck is the main factor in determining whether or not you’ll win or lose money.
If someone offers you tips for a fee, recognize that you’re in the process of being scammed. Just say no and walk away.
3 – Card Counting Helps
If you’re an avid blackjack player, card counting can help take your game to the next level by lowering the house edge to miniscule levels. Taking the time to learn this practice, which is easier than you might think, is certainly worth the effort if you’re serious about making money.
With all of that being said, card counting isn’t going to get you anywhere in baccarat. Some experts would suggest that knowing a 2-4 can help the player score, while 5-9 will help the banker, but having this knowledge only provides a small advantage (if any at all) and most players don’t find it worth their time.
Specific strategies do exist for card counting in baccarat, but again, most experienced players believe that it simply isn’t worth the time and effort to learn them. As intriguing as it may be to gain any advantage possible, you’re better off finding other ways to be successful.
Instead of trying to game the system through card counting, focus more on proper money management. Over the long run, this will have much more of an impact on your bottom line than any gimmicky strategy.
4 – It’s Complicated to Learn
One of the main reasons that more people don’t play baccarat is because they believe there’s a high barrier to entry, either financially or because of complicated rules. This actually couldn’t be further from the truth.
One of my favorite descriptions of baccarat is that it’s essentially a simply coin toss, dressed up with all the shiny glitz and glamour you can imagine. In fact, having no experience at all really doesn’t put you at any disadvantage whatsoever.
Because baccarat leaves so much to chance, that’s why I’ll reinforce that the best way to be profitable is by learning how to manage your money…that’s the real strategy aspect to consider. Once you learn how to play baccarat, you’ll see that the game itself is about as straightforward as it gets.
If you want to get a better grasp on the game but feel intimidated by the roped off tables and patrons in fancy, expensive clothes, there are plenty of great options available to you. For example, learning how to play at a real money online casino removes any of the pressure you might feel with an audience.
Utilizing an online casino means you can master the game without any judgement. Not to mention, it also provides a place where you can find lower limits on bets, which makes baccarat more accessible than you may have thought otherwise. Finally, some versions of baccarat that are found online give players even better odds than they’d find in a casino.
If you’re new to baccarat or any other casino game, learning on an online platform is a great option to figuring it out on the casino floor.
5 – It’s a Good Idea to Switch up Betting on the Banker and the Player
This myth is another example of the gambler’s fallacy rearing its ugly head. The idea that if one result has happened multiple times in a row, the other result is more likely to happen next, is fundamentally flawed and has been widely proven to be false.
In a game like roulette, you might switch between red and black based on some version of the gambler’s fallacy. The good news? Choosing red or black doesn’t give the house any particular edge one way or the other. The same cannot be said in baccarat when it comes to choosing to bet on the banker or the player.
If you choose to play the banker’s hand, your house edge is lowered to 1.06%. You’d be hard pressed to find a game that gives you more favorable odds.
If you’re thinking that the difference between 1.24% and 1.06% is relatively insignificant, you’re not looking at it the right way. When gambling, it’s important to look how the odds will play out over a long period of time. If you frequently take the worse of the two options, when the law of averages sets in, you’re going to wish you had played the percentages.
It might not be exciting to say, but betting on the banker is always going to be the better play in baccarat. Ignoring those “gut feelings” can be challenging, but it’s better to play it safe than to go with the bet that’s less likely to hit.
If you’ve never played baccarat, I would encourage every gambler to give it a try. The mythology surrounding the game can make it feel intimidating, but you don’t need to be rich to get in on the action.
Find a good online casino to hone your skills, focus on money management, and learn the intricacies of the game. You might be surprised at how profitable it can be, even playing at with small minimum bets.