Rules Of Baccarat
The game baccarat dates back to the 1400s and although it is widely played in most casinos around the world, as well as being available at the majority of online casinos, it can be somewhat of a intimidating game for beginners. However, the rules of baccarat are very simple and as the game is mostly luck-based, there is minimal strategy involved which actually makes it the perfect game for newbies.
As well as being a very simple game to play, the house edge of baccarat is very low. This means that it is one of the best casino games in terms of value and gives the player a much greater chance of making a profit compared to other popular games in a casino such as slots, roulette or blackjack.
This page is aimed at beginners and will outline the basic rules of baccarat to help you become more comfortable playing the game.
To explain how the baccarat game works, we’ll run through the play from the beginning of the betting round to determining the winner once all cards have been dealt.
Firstly, the player must place their bets. This is done before any cards are dealt.
The player has three betting options.
- Bet on The Player (Punto)
- Bet on the Bank (Banco)
- Bet on the Tie
Objective Of Baccarat
The objective of baccarat is to predict whether the Player or the Bank will have cards that total the closest to 9.
Baccarat Card Values
When playing baccarat, the value of the cards are calculated based on the following:
- 2 through 9 cards of any suit have face value. eg. a 2 card has a value of 2, a 7 card has a value of 7 etc.
- 10s, Jacks, Queens and Kings of any suit have no value. Zero.
- Aces have a value of 1
If the Bank was dealt a King and a 5, their total would be 5.
If the Player was dealt an Ace and an 8, their total would be 9.
Sound simple? Just one more thing…
Should either the Bank or the Player have a total that is double-digits ie. a value of 10 or above, the first digit is disregarded.
If the Bank had cards with values totalling 11, their total would be 1.
If the Player had cards with values totalling 17, their total would be 7.
The Dealing Of Cards
Once players have made their bets, the first round of cards are dealt.
Two cards are dealt to the Player and two cards to the Bank.
Sometimes, a third card is dealt to the Bank and/or the Player.
Whether or not the Player receives a third card is based on the total value of their first two cards.
Whether or not the Bank receives a third card is based on the value of the Players third card should they receive one.
Although this may seem confusing at first, thankfully, all of the above is based on the game rules and not strategy. Therefore, once you learn when a third card is drawn (see below), you can sit back and enjoy the game from the point of placing your bet.
When Are Only Two Cards Drawn In Baccarat?
If either the Players cards or the Banks cards total 8 or 9 after they have both received two cards, the game finishes and the winner is determined.
Those with card values totalling the closest to 9 wins or if both the Player and Bank have the same total value, a Tie is announced.
When Is A Third Card Drawn In Baccarat?
The Player’s hand is the first of the two to receive a third card if they are required to. This is based on the value of their initial two cards as follows.
Player’s Baccarat Rule
If the Players cards total 5 or less, they draw a third card.
If the Players cards total 6 or 7, they stand.
Bankers Baccarat Rule
The Banker will only draw a third card if the Player does i.e.. If the Players cards total 5 or less.
Should the Players cards total 5 or less, whether or not the Banker draws a third card is based on the value of the Players third card as shown below.
- If the banker total is 2 or less, they draw a third card, regardless of what the player’s third card is.
- If the banker total is 3, they draw a third card unless the player’s third card is an 8.
- If the banker total is 4, they draw a third card if the player’s third card is 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
- If the banker total is 5, they draw a third card if the player’s third card is 4, 5, 6, or 7.
- If the banker total is 6, they draw a third card if the player’s third card is a 6 or 7.
- If the banker total is 7, they stand.
Baccarat Third Card Chart
You can use the handy table below to help you understand when the Banker qualifies for a third card.
|Value Of Player's Third Card|
|Bankers Total Value||0||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9|
Although the rules of baccarat may seem like a lot to take in at first, the game is actually a relatively simple one.
As there isn’t much strategy involved, you simply need to learn the rules and then place your bets. After which you can sit back, enjoy the game and hope that luck is on your side.
Although the outcome of a baccarat game is mainly based on luck, there are better bets than others. For example, the house edge is different when betting on the Banker, Player and the Tie.
We’ll explain all of the best and worst bets that you can place in our Baccarat Strategy article to help you maximise your returns from the game.