The Thinking Gambler’s Guide to Baccarat
Once you start playing baccarat for real money there isn’t much thinking involved. But this doesn’t mean that you don’t need to think about how you’re going to play before you place your first wager.
Thinking about the three wager options is the first step, and it’s the most important decision you have to make. It turns out that there’s only one option if you want the best return when you play baccarat.
You can use comps and bonuses when you play baccarat, but they don’t move the needle far. And you can forget about baccarat gambling systems, because they just make you lose more.
Banker Wager Thoughts
Of the three baccarat wager options, the banker bet is the best option. It’s over 10 times better than the tie bet option, but only slightly better than the player option.
I’ll give you the numbers that show exactly why the banker option is the best option, but first you need to learn about an important part of betting on the banker.
Instead of paying 1 to 1 on wins it only pays .95 to 1. The casinos collect a commission of 5% on every banker wager you win. In other words, if you bet $10 and win you get your $10 back and win $9.50, or if you bet $20 you get back $20 plus a win of $19.
The commission is included in the casino house edge and return numbers listed below.
The house edge the casino holds on banker wagers is 1.06% and the return is 98.94%. What this means in real-world dollars and cents is that you can multiply the casino edge times how much you bet to see how much you’re expected to lose.
When you make $450 worth of bets on the banker hand you can expect to lose $4.77.
Player Wager Thoughts
The banker wager is good, but the player wager isn’t bad. It also pays at a true 1 to 1 without a commission, so it’s easier for some baccarat players to use and understand.
The casino edge is 1.24% on the player, which means the return is 98.76%. As you can see, this is close to what you can get in returns betting on banker.
When you make $450 worth of bets on the player hand you can expect to lose $5.58.
Over years of playing you can bet a total of $100,000 or more. And the difference in losses on $100,000 is $180. This still isn’t a huge amount, but I’m sure that you’d rather spend that $180 on something else than giving it to the casino.
After all, $100,000 is only 10,000 bets of $10 and you can play 100 hands every hour at the baccarat table. At this rate it only takes 100 hours to play 10,000 hands.
Betting on a Tie
The tie wager in baccarat is one of the worst casino bets, so it really doesn’t need a section in this article. I could cover everything you need to know about the tie by saying that it’s so bad that you should never make it. But in order to be complete I want to show you just how bad this option really is.
The casino edge for tie is 14.36%, which gives you a return of only 85.64%. To put this in perspective, the worst games in most casinos are slot machines and most slot machines offer a higher return than this.
When you make $450 worth of bets on a tie you can expect to lose $64.62. Compare this to how much you can expect to lose making the same amount of wagers on either the banker or player. Both of those wagers are over 10 times better in the long run than betting on a tie.