Baccarat may play second fiddle to blackjack with casino gamblers in the U.S. Still, it’s a clear-cut leader in the casino in Macau. And, baccarat might qualify as one of the best options if you want to win at gambling.
That trend is moving throughout casinos worldwide, and it’s only a matter of time before baccarat tables become the most predominant on the casino floor in your preferred casino. So, you may want to start brushing up on your baccarat play now.
Baccarat is among the easiest casino games on the planet to play. However, the rules can be somewhat complicated; much like blackjack, the player and dealer follow slightly different rules.
Still, that won’t make much difference to you. Let’s look at how to learn baccarat in the shortest time.
How to Play the Game of Baccarat
Again, while the game of baccarat is straightforward, the rules can be confusing to beginners. Fortunately, you can play and enjoy baccarat without firmly understanding when the player or dealer may get a third card.
The matter is completely out of your hands regardless. So, I feel that it’s far more beneficial to focus on the objective of the game; winning.
I’ll also tell you my best strategy for racking up the most wins, but I’ll get to that down the line.
The whole premise of baccarat is to pick either the banker or the player drawing a hand, totaling closer to 9. That’s essentially what baccarat breaks down to, making a decision on whether the house or banker will get closer to 9.
How you get to this conclusion is purely left to chance. The casinos put up official-looking results boards to make it seem like the previous results may somehow influence what happens next. Still, each result is independent of all prior and any future hands.
Ignoring the results board can help you avoid falling into the trap of looking for patterns in a game that is truly random.
Take a Look — It’s In a Book
My wife is an avid reader. She spends hours reading about her favorite hobbies, and her diligence pays off. She’s become an expert on things like coffee and house plants.
She’ll regularly give me detailed accounts of a particular coffee roast, including where the beans are farmed, who owns the coffee plantation, and their life story.
I think it’s great. Unfortunately, our brains work on polar opposite sides.
I’m a doer; I like to dive into a subject headfirst with a hands-on approach. This style of learning leads to a lot of trial and error.
It may also lengthen the learning curve depending on the subject and my aptitude. I tend to be at least somewhat proficient in most areas, so I get by.
For those who prefer to heavily research a subject, reading up on baccarat will be a fantastic place to start. You’ll find a nice variety of books on your usual retailer’s websites.
The best books cover everything from the basic rules and bankroll management to casino etiquette and advanced strategies.
I’m a big fan of gathering information from as many sound sources as possible. There is no shortage of quality publications on the game.
Computer Sciences and Learning to Play Baccarat
For the potential baccarat player looking to take shortcuts, computer software that teaches you the game and basic strategies can be found at a fair price.
I’ve met many casino gamblers that have used these systems and seem to have a solid understanding of the game. However, spending hours taking a computer class on playing a casino game won’t appeal to a large number of you.
The biggest issue I have with these lesson plans is the absence of any human instructors when questions come up. I used a similar teaching technique when I picked up the guitar. I grew frustrated by paying for a service that required me to have my questions answered by random strangers whose qualifications were anybody’s guess.
Still, if you’re used to this type of learning experience, pre-packaged computer lessons may be the right solution.
Online Casinos Make Learning New Games Like Baccarat Fun and Stress-Free
My favorite way to learn new things is through the internet. I’ve learned to play the guitar, perform minor home and automotive repairs, speak new languages, and play new casino games online.
The beautiful aspect of learning a casino game online is that you’ll receive an immersive experience. You’ll be able to play the game as you’re learning the ins and outs.
Best of all, you’ll be able to find both real money and social casinos online to try the game without risking any of your cash reserves.
I prefer this method for several reasons, but the fact that it doesn’t cost a dollar is high on the list. Many casino gamblers will sit down to a game with only a vague notion about how to play the game.
This behavior can lead to substantial losses and put a bitter taste in the mouth of new gamblers. Worst of all, it’s easily avoided by merely learning the games before you ever leave for the casino.
Pick the Right Casino for the Most Baccarat Success
The online or land-based casino you choose to learn and eventually play will have real-life impacts on your long-term success or failure.
Online casinos will offer more variations of rules for the player. That means you’ll have more to learn as you navigate through the tables.
As a rookie, it’s much more challenging to spot the subtle differences between table rules. However, you’ve got a better shot at finding the changes online than on the busy casino floor.
When you’re looking for the best possible online casino, you should make sure the site offers a free version of the games where you can learn and practice without compromising your bankroll.
Whether an online casino allows you to explore and play for free without creating an account can also be a selling point for some gamblers. Especially when the online casino is requesting your banking information without and deposit being made.
Check the site’s user interface carefully. You won’t want to spend much time on a game that’s hard on your eyes or in a language you don’t speak.
Making simple mistakes repeatedly because you’re not clicking with the site’s product may discourage you. At the least, it will hamper your progress.
How the Game Shakes Out
Baccarat is super easy and fun. To play a baccarat hand, you place your wager in either the banker space or the player space.
Selecting your wager amount is personal, but it should be between 1-3% of your bankroll. The small wager size will help you stay in the game longer and weather the ebb and flow of losing streaks.
Pay attention to the table and note the table minimum and maximum. Nobody wants to sit down to the high-limit game and have the dealer turn away their $10 bet.
The dealer will then deal with the hands and pay any winning bets. That’s about all there is to a hand of baccarat.
Like I mentioned, the game couldn’t be much more straightforward.
Side Bets Are for Suckers
Casinos make a living off of the suckers. The sucker bets are typically cleverly disguised right next to the bets with the low house edge.
Sucker bets usually come with higher payouts to lure gamblers in and take their money.
Considering the small number of wagers found on a typical baccarat table, the game has many sucker bets. In most gambling circles, the tie bet itself is seen as a total sucker bet.
Since you’ll find the tie bet on any baccarat table, that’s the first one you should avoid. The 8:1 payout sounds incredible, but you’ll be facing a house advantage over 14%.
In other words, you’re better off playing slot machines.
Some baccarat tables offer additional side bets like either pair or perfect pair.
The either pair bet pays if the banker or player is dealt a pair at 5:1. The perfect pair wins if the player or dealer gets a suited pair, which pays 25:1.
The house edge for the either pair is over 14%. There’s no good reason to make this wager, considering a tie pays 8:1 with a lower house edge.
For a perfect pair, the house edge goes up to 17%. That makes it a much worse chance for the player, but at least the payout leaps by 5 times.
No matter how you cut it, both bets are bad for the player and should be ignored whenever they’re available.
Best Strategy for Baccarat
I’ll be brief because baccarat all boils down to one clever play; the banker bet. The banker bet in baccarat has a wonderful house edge of a mere 1.06%, making it among the lowest in the casino.
The absolute best strategy is to bet the banker, and when you’ve grown weary of betting the banker, bet it some more.
There are several paths a player may take for learning to play baccarat. If you’re focused on how to learn baccarat in the shortest time, you should focus on the online route.
You can read all of the books on how to play baccarat on your flight to Las Vegas; the online gambling experience will do the best job of preparing you for the real thing. Especially if you’re playing for “toy” money.