How to Play Baccarat


Baccarat is a simple, slow-paced game with some of the lowest house edges in the casino. While it is often portrayed as elegant and formal in the movies – it’s James Bond’s favourite game – it’s actually very easy to learn, with no complicated strategy required, making it a perfect choice for new players.

The first step in playing baccarat is to determine the value of each hand. This is done by adding the values of the two cards in a given hand. If the total is eight or nine, the hand is considered a “natural” and wins without needing a third card. If the total is ten or more, the hand must draw a third card. In some cases, a third card will be drawn even if the first two hands have a natural, which is called a ‘tie’.

In the case of a tie, both the Banker’s hand and the Player’s hand are equal in value, meaning there is no winner or loser. In these situations, the wagers are collected by the dealer and paid out according to their respective results. A winning bet on the Banker’s hand pays out 95% of the amount wagered; a winning bet on the Player’s hand pays out 8-1. A 5% commission is taken by the dealer on the Banker’s winning bets, which is tracked in a special commission box.

When wagering on the Banker’s hand, players may place a bet up to the maximum amount permitted for that round. This is called going “bank.” If all the punters go bank, then only one player deals; otherwise, players take turns dealing. If a punter wishes to change their wager, they can do so before the next deal.

After a round of betting, the banker’s and player’s hands are revealed. The hand that is closest to nine wins. In the case of a tie, the banker and player’s bets are paid out accordingly.

The game of baccarat has been around for centuries, with its roots in Italy and France. By the time of King Louis XIV, the game was extremely popular in French casinos. When public gambling became illegal in the 19th century, baccarat continued to be played by wealthy Europeans in their private homes.

Today, baccarat is enjoyed by millions of people worldwide. The game has inspired a number of variations and side bets, but its basic rules remain unchanged. The popularity of the game has also given rise to several films featuring baccarat, including the 1954 television adaptation of Casino Royal; the 1967 film Dr. No; On Her Majesty’s Secret Service; Thunderball; For Your Eyes Only; and GoldenEye. In addition, baccarat is featured in numerous novels and short stories by famous authors.