Alongside roulette and poker, baccarat is one of the most played table games at both brick-and-mortar and online casinos. It is difficult to ascertain exactly when baccarat was invented, although it is believed to have originated in France centuries ago. While the gambling industry has had to adapt to legislative changes over the years, with many countries refusing to legalise it, its popularity has never waned.

Today’s casinos and their online counterparts offer an extensive variety of both table games and slot machines. Baccarat remains extremely popular, due in part to its simplicity and to its sophisticated portrayal in popular culture. The rise of the online casino has only served to maintain its status as one of the world’s most well-loved table games.

How to Play Baccarat

The game of baccarat is simple to understand. The goal is to bet on a hand which adds up to a total as close as possible to 9, and this can be the player’s or the dealer’s hand. Gamblers may bet on either their own hands or the dealer’s, so holding the best hand is not necessary to win.

Each card is worth a certain number of points; an ace is worth 1, and the numbers 2 – 9 are worth their corresponding face value. 10s, jacks, queens and kings are worth 0. Adding up the total of the two cards in each hand gives the player’s score, although players need to remember that if the total is double digits, the first digit is disregarded and the second gives the player’s score.

A hand totalling 8 or 9 is deemed a natural win and bets are cashed out. If a hand does not add up to 8 or 9, the closest hand to 9 is the winning hand and if both hands add up to the same total, it is a tied outcome.

How to Place Bets

Bets are placed before the hands are dealt, with three main types of bets available. Players can bet on the banker, the player themselves or on a tied bet. The decision to back either the player or the banker does not translate to betting either for or against the casino; instead, the bet is simply placed on the two different outcomes.

Players can also bet on a tied outcome. However, players should be aware of the odds of each outcome. While the probability of a winning player’s hand and a winning banker’s hand are not dissimilar at around 44.6% and 45.8% respectively, a tied outcome is far less likely at just under 10%.

Whatever the game of choice, players should be careful to set a budget and stick to it. Staying under budget is key to keeping losses to a minimum. Some players also reduce their bets after a losing round to extend their playing time for longer periods.

What are the Benefits of Playing Baccarat Online?

With the rapid growth of the online casino, baccarat has attracted a new legion of fans. The online version of the classic game gives players the opportunity to play around the clock. And while the experience is different to stepping foot in a land-based casino, playing baccarat online can provide an exciting mix of strategy and luck – opening up the realms of baccarat to contemporary gamblers in search of classic casino excitement.

  • Promotions and free play

The majority of reputable online casinos offer new players a range of welcome bonuses upon joining, as well as an opportunity to play games for free before placing real money bets. Free play enables gamblers to develop an understanding of the game and its strategies without losing any funds.

It is essential to conduct some research before selecting the right online casino; every player should be aware of the importance of safeguarding personal and financial data.

  • A low house edge

Of all the table games and slot machines available, baccarat has one of the lowest house edges. The lower the house edge, the better the odds for the player. The casino edge on the banker’s hand can be as low as 1.06%, allowing players to maximise their winnings and play for longer.

  • Unlimited gameplay

As land-based casinos are limited by physical space, online casinos have a significant advantage in offering gamers the opportunity to keep playing with no waiting time. In addition, players can enjoy baccarat at any time of day or night, while land-based casinos are restricted by opening times.

  • Ease and convenience

In view of legislation varying by country and by state, gambling enthusiasts living in prohibited regions may be unable to access brick-and-mortar casinos. As a result, online casinos provide gamblers with a viable alternative which can be accessed from any region.

Furthermore, the enhanced capabilities of today’s smartphone allow gamers to play wherever they like regardless of their location.

Baccarat is one of the most popular casino games and the growth of the online casino industry has given gamers the opportunity to play whenever they like. The opportunity to play for free, as well as online casinos’ welcome bonuses and rewards for loyal customers, allows players to gain a thorough understanding of the game and hone their skills before spending money.