Baccarat isn’t a popular game in most countries, but it offers a combination of benefits that no other game has. Baccarat is one of the easiest casino games to play and it offers a great return to player percentage.
But you have to play it the right way to get the highest return to player number, and that’s basically what all of the tips in this article cover.
Some live baccarat players try to make the game more complicated than it needs to be. Continue reading to learn how to keep things simple and play in a way that gives you the highest possible return.
Don’t Waste Your Time Looking for Patterns
I often see baccarat players using a pencil and slip of paper or small notebook. They track the results of each hand, making a mark beside the tie when the tie bet wins, beside the banker when the banker wager wins, and beside the player when the player wager wins.
These gamblers try to recognize patterns or tendencies by tracking the results. This seems like it might be a decent system, but the truth is that it’s a waste of time.
Most baccarat games are dealt using eight decks of playing cards. And within the content of the eight decks, the results are as close to random as they can be. Yes, there are only 32 of each of the 13 ranks of cards in the shoe. But the odds of a tie, banker, or player win are basically the same at any point in the shoe.
I don’t mean that a tie is as likely as a player or banker winning hand. What I mean is that the odds of a tie don’t really change based on what’s happened in the past. If the last hand was a tie, the next hand has the same odds of being a tie as it is if the last hand wasn’t a tie.
The fact of baccarat, backed up by mathematical facts, is that the best wager is a bet on the banker hand. No matter what the past results are, the banker wager is always the best baccarat wager. You’re just wasting your time tracking past results looking for patterns.
Don’t Try Counting Cards Either
When you play blackjack, you can get a small edge if you learn how to count cards and make larger wagers when the deck or shoe has a higher ration of high cards than low cards. This is true and has been proven using math and in practice.
Here’s what they found. They could alter the return a small amount. But they couldn’t alter it enough to get an edge, and they couldn’t alter the return until the very end of the shoe. In other words, they had to count through seven or more decks to see if they could alter the edge. And even if the remaining cards were promising, they couldn’t bet enough to get an overall edge.
Basically, what all of this means is that counting cards at the baccarat table is a waste of your time. If you’re smart enough to count cards, you can actually make money playing blackjack. You’re wasting your talent and an opportunity to gamble with an edge if you’re trying to count cards playing baccarat.
Only Losers Make Tie Wagers
You only have three options for wagers when you play baccarat. Some baccarat games offer a side bet, but you can ignore all side bet offers. Side bets in baccarat and all other casino games are designed to get more money in play and make more money for the casino. The best baccarat strategy in the casino is to never make any side bets on any game.
The three baccarat wager options are a tie hand, a winning player hand, and a winning banker hand. In comparison to other casino games, the player hand and banker hand have a high return to player percentage.
The only games that offer a higher return in casinos are usually blackjack and video poker games that have good pay tables. The banker hand option has a slightly higher return than the player hand, so the banker hand is the best hand to place a wager on.
But the tie wager option is absolutely terrible. It’s one of the worst betting options in the entire casino. The return number is less than 90% on the tie bet, while the return on both the banker and player hand is over 98.5%.
Reduced Commission Baccarat
In the previous section, you learned why you should never make the tie wager at the baccarat table. You also learned that the banker option is a little better than the player option.
Some beginning baccarat players get confused about this because when you make a wager on the banker hand and win, the casino only pays back 95% of the bet instead of 100%. In other words, the casino gets a 5% commission on winning banker bets.
The important thing to understand is that the banker hand wager still has a higher return than the player hand option, even after the casino collects the commission.
But if you can play at a baccarat table that offers a reduced commission on the banker wager, this can be the best wager in the casino. A reduced commission on the banker hand makes the return number even higher, and can push it higher than some blackjack and video poker games.
If you’re a regular gambler that doesn’t gamble at the highest stakes, you’re at the mercy of the casino. You’re only going to be able to play with a reduced commission when you get lucky and find a game that offers it.
But if you’re a high roller, you might be able to negotiate a reduced commission when you play baccarat. All you can do is ask, and if the casino agrees, you can take advantage of it. The worst thing that can happen when you ask for reduced commission is that the casino denies your request.
The Argument for Mobile and Online Baccarat Games
Baccarat plays faster than many casino games, especially when you’re playing mini baccarat. A good dealer can run through hands quickly. But even the fastest live baccarat dealer can’t deal as fast as you can play baccarat in mobile and online casinos.
If you’re an action junkie and want to play as fast as possible, you can get your fix playing baccarat online and in mobile casinos. But smart baccarat players know that playing faster isn’t a benefit. They know that playing slower is better because it means that they lose less money overtime.
Mobile and online baccarat give you control over the speed of the game. You can choose to play slower when you play online and mobile baccarat. And this reduces your losses. You can also make smaller wagers playing mobile and online baccarat than you can in live casinos, which reduces your risk more.
The other advantage of playing online and mobile baccarat is that you can often find casinos that offer a bonus when you play for real money. A baccarat bonus instantly increases your bankroll, which lets you gamble longer.
In the long run, baccarat bonuses don’t change the overall return. But it’s basically free money, so there’s no reason why you shouldn’t take it and play baccarat longer.
I know that most baccarat gamblers aren’t going to use these five tips, but I hope that you land in the small group that will. Even though you can’t beat baccarat over time, it still is one of the games in casinos that offers a high rate of return.
It’s a waste of time to look for patterns or to count cards. Neither of these strategies can change the long term outcome of baccarat. The tie wager is so bad that you need to forget that it even exists.
If you can find reduced commission baccarat games, you need to grab a seat. These games offer the highest return percentages you’re going to find.