While baccarat is popular in land-based casinos, the addition of Mini Baccarat has made it even more popular and accessible.
Mini Baccarat is the same game as Baccarat, but it is played on a table that is half size. The Mini Baccarat table looks a lot like a blackjack table. The gaming table seats a maximum of seven players, although some are designed to seat even less.
The only real difference between real and mini Baccarat is that in mini-version only the croupier shuffles and deals. In normal (high-stakes) Baccarat, the players sometimes get to deal too.
Playing casino baccarat
Online casinos offer both baccarat and Mini Baccarat. When playing from your trusted online casino, you can always get a seat at the table. You never have to wait around for a place to open up for you, as you might have had to do in a land-based casino.
Online casinos also offer much smaller stakes compared to real life casinos.
Baccarat is a traditional high stakes game. it’s sometimes played with minimum bets of $100,000 (yes, really), which can lead to rather impressive losses. Online games’ minimum bets are usually around $1.
In addition to playing online casino baccarat, you can now choose to go mobile too. Baccarat is one of the few table games, which are available in mobile format at pretty much all online casinos.
You can play mobile Baccarat for free or for real money. The games work well on all Apple or Android phones and tablets. For the best mobile version, we recommend LeoVegas.
Live dealer baccarat
Canadians can play live casino Baccarat at Spin Casino. Playing live dealer games is an exciting way to get the real feel of a brick and mortar casino while you are in the comfort of your own home.
When you play a live game, you’ll see a video feed from a casino. Hands are dealt from a real deck of cards and everything works just like playing live, except you place your bets with a mouse.
The game that started out with tuxedo clad players in a baccarat pit can now be played by pajama-clad players in their own homes, as they chat to the live casino’s baccarat croupier.
Punto banco and other variations
There are three main Baccarat variations found in casinos in addition to normal Baccarat. They are:
- Punto Banco
- Chemin de Fer
- Baccarat Banque
Punto Banco, or North American baccarat as it is often known, is a game of chance. The other two forms of baccarat require some skill.
Punto Banco is the form of baccarat that is played in Canada. The aim of the game is to have the closest total to nine points. The game can be played in both the larger and smaller Mini Baccarat versions.
In Punto Banco players can act as dealers. The game is all luck, you don’t make any decisions in the game other than placing your bet on the outcome of the hands. You can choose to place your wager on either the banker hand, the player hand, or the tie hand.
Chemin de Fer
Chemin de Fer allows players to take a more active role in the baccarat game including not only dealing but also shuffling the cards. The cards are dealt face-down whereas they are dealt face-up in Punto Banco. This is the only version of baccarat in which it is possible to choose whether to take an additional card.
Chemin de Fer can only be found at real life high-stakes casinos. It is not available online.
Baccarat Banque is similar to Chemin de Fer. One player will remain the dealer for the entire shoe. The croupier picks the dealer-banker by choosing either the first player to the dealer’s right or the player that placed the highest wager. This version of baccarat is usually played with less decks of cards than the other two versions of the game.
Like Chemin de Fer, Baccarat Banque also can’t be found at any online casinos.
Baccarat Tips and Strategy
Punto Banco, or American Baccarat, is a game of chance. Unlike in Roulette, there is however still a bit of room for using good strategy and making making smart betting choices.
Don’t ever wager on the tie bet.
It is better to place a bet on either the banker hand or the player hand than on tie. Placing a bet on a tied hand may pay out more, but is much less likely to occur. The tie bet has a huge 15% house advantage, while the banker and player bets have a little over a 1% house advantage. If you are interested in seeing the full calculations behind this tip, see this page about Baccarat math.
Bet on the house (banker)
The best bet in Baccarat is to bet on the house hand (banker). The house edge on this bet is less than a percent. This tiny edge has lead casinos to charge rake, a commission, on the banker hand wins.
In the long-term the banker bet is still the best bet to take. In the short-term, however, there is no guarantee that the banker hand will win, and you may enjoy predicting which hand to bet on.
Try free games first
While playing baccarat is dead simple, you may wish to try some free baccarat games before playing with real money. This will help you to see exactly how the game is played before placing real money bets.
Best Baccarat game on the net
Guts has our favorite online version of Baccarat.
- Looks and sounds good
- Bet small ($1) or big (up to $100)
- Fast game play – no waiting
- No downloading needed – play in your browser
- Compatible with all mobile devices