Baccarat is one of the most popular games in the world. Recently, it's been wide-spread at online casinos as well. Let's talk about the major nuances of this exciting game.
Many players think that resemblance between baccarat and blackjack is sufficient for using a strategy based on mathematical calculations. Of course, these games have common features, and card counting can also be used in baccarat, but this will lead to too minor changes in the house edge to seriously rely on this.
Online baccarat doesn't allow the player to profit from a slight change in the house edge.
Unlike blackjack, baccarat player has almost no freedom to choose further actions. This singnificantly limits his impact on the game.
Each card coming out of the game has some effect on the player's and casino's odds, but in reality, card counting in baccarat is almost ten times less efficient than in blackjack. For this reason, most professional players and even mathematicians will tell you that you should not bother with card counting playing baccarat.
If you still insist on card counting, pay attention to 6 and 4. The more 4s leave the game, the better the banker's chances of winning. If a lot of 6s are out, the game goes in the player's favor.
Martingale and other betting systems
Also, all baccarat players should be warned against the use of a betting system known as Martingale. If you are not familiar with this strategy, we will briefly describe it.
- Martingale implies that you double the bet after every loss.
- That means losing a dollar, bet two.
- Losing two, bet four.
- Go on until you win. Then start again with a minimum bet.
This system can be effective if there is a large difference between the minimum and maximum bets, and your bankroll can withstand a long series of losses.
In baccarat, this strategy works even rarer than at the roulette, though it is also mercilessly criticized there.
In pursuit of winning the minimum bet, players following this system often lose fortunes in a few minutes. This concept will inevitably lead to failure, which's especially noticeable at the low limit tables. Therefore, if you do not want to lose your bankroll, you better give up the Martingale system in baccarat.
Is it worth playing baccarat at all?
However, other betting systems are also unlikely to help you at a baccarat table significantly. You may ask, is it worth playing this game at all, without card counting and a strategy to significantly affect the odds of winning? But the answer is yes.
The reason is that baccarat has a low house edge.
In this game, you can make three types of bets, while one of them should be forgotten forever. The other two give the player equal chances of winning, although one of them is more advantageous.
Here are some tips for all the players who want to increase their chances of success in baccarat.
Bet on the banker
This bet is called Banco, and it is the most beneficial for the player of all three possible.
The house edge when betting on the player (Punto) is about 1.25% while for the bet on the banker it is only 1.05%.
This does not mean that you should never bet on the player. Sometimes intuition may give you the correct clues. Considering that the house edge for these bets is practically the same, it would be too presumptuous and boring to bet on the banker all the time. However, if we look at a long period of the game, bets on the banker should greatly prevail.
As for betting on a draw, you should avoid it without a doubt, as the house edge is nearly 15% at this point.
Choose baccarat with the fewest decks
Different casinos may offer baccarat with a different number of decks. If we consider these options in terms of the house edge, it goes down with each deck removed from the total number of cards.
Chances of winning in the game with 8 decks are as follows:
The picture is different in the games with 6 decks:
As you can see, if you stick to constant betting on the banker, playing with 6 decks is 0.01% more beneficial than with 8 decks. If we measure it in the house edge, it looks like 1.06 % (8 decks) and 1.05 % (6 decks).
In this case, if, for some reason, you prefer to bet on the player or even the draw, you should play with 8 decks. However, such an approach can not be considered reasonable anyway.
Of course, the advantage of 0.01% is no big reason to look for baccarat with 6 decks, but, when possible, make sure you choose that.
Play in a casino that charges the lowest fees
As you know, casinos charge a high fee on baccarat winnings.
- Usually, it is 5%, which means the house edge of 1.05% for the bet on the banker.
- However, some casinos take only 4%, which reduces the house edge to 0.6%.
- Therefore, if you have an opportunity to play at a 4% fee table, be sure to use it.
Bet on the banker at this table is definitely one of the best in the casino.
Manage your bankroll wisely
As it was already mentioned, betting systems give no additional advantage to baccarat players. Therefore, you should forget about the Martingale and other strategies popular among many new players. Set your limits in advance (loss and win) and firmly follow them.
This approach will at least save you from unexpected losses and let go with a win that is already in your pocket.