How to Beat the House Edge in Baccarat


Baccarat is a card game that can be played online in the five US states that offer legal gambling. It is also featured in several James Bond films. Like other casino games, it offers high payouts but has a high house edge.

The goal of baccarat is to get as close to nine as possible. Tens and face cards have little-to-no value, while aces are worth one point.

Game rules

The game of baccarat is played by up to 14 players in a roped-off area. The cards are dealt from a shoe, which contains eight decks of cards. A croupier or dealer is responsible for dealing the cards. A palette is a long wooden stick used to move the cards during play. The game is popular in Las Vegas casinos that cater to high rollers and features a specialized table for the game.

There are several rules that govern baccarat, including the number of players and the amount they can bet on a given hand. The goal is to get a player’s or banker’s total closest to nine. In addition, the game has a variety of side bets, including a ‘Tiger’, ‘Big Tiger’, and ‘Small Tiger’.


In baccarat, players can bet on their own hand winning, the banker’s hand winning, or a tie. A win on a tie bet pays 1:1, but the house has a 5% take of the winnings. This small taking is how casinos pay for maintenance, new games, and employee wages.

Some baccarat tables have electronic posts rising up that display the last 30 winning hands. While tracking these trends can build anticipation, it doesn’t help your play much. In addition, it’s not always easy to spot trends at one table. A popular side bet in commission-free baccarat, this wager wins if the Banker’s hand has a ’6’ with two cards. It’s a poker-based side bet that pays based on the poker value of the first two cards in the Banker and Player hands.


Baccarat is one of the most popular casino games, and it offers players a variety of ways to bet. The game’s simple rules make it easy to learn and understand, but a smart player can boost their chances of winning by applying some strategies.

These systems include positive progression systems that encourage players to increase their wager size after every win and negative progression strategies, which recommend reducing the bet amount after a loss. Using these methods reduces the amount of money a player can lose and prevents them from chasing losing streaks.

The ’Player’ bet has the highest house edge and pays out even money, while a ‘Banker’ bet pays out 1 to 1. A ‘Tie’ bet has a high payout of 8:1. These side bets are offered on most tables in casinos and online.

Edge sorting

Edge sorting is a technique that takes advantage of imperfections on the back of cards to identify specific cards and get a huge edge over the casino. It is not illegal, but casinos hate it and will blacklist players who try it. Phil Ivey used the method to win 12 million dollars at Croakfords casino and another 10 million at Borgata Casino.

The method involves observing tiny irregularities that are almost indiscernible to normal players. These imperfections occur due to slight variations in the pattern of a card’s back. Baccarat is a perfect game for this strategy, as it allows players to distinguish high-value cards from regular low-value ones by their asymmetrical patterns. Edge sorting is not cheating, but it does require the dealer to rotate cards during the shuffle.


When the game of baccarat gained popularity around the world, it was only natural that several variations would emerge. Although many of these variants failed to hold gamblers’ interest, a few managed to endure.

Chemin de Fer is a French version of baccarat that differs from the classic game in several ways. In this variation, players compete against each other and the croupier sets out a stake that any player can match. Players can then declare a “Banco,” which allows them to become the banker for a round.

Another popular variation of baccarat is Live Dragon Tiger, which uses eight decks of cards and features three main wagers – the Dragon, Tiger, and Tie. This variation also features a unique commission free banker bet, which pays even money on wins.