Complete baccarat strategy can be explained in a single sentence. The best strategy when you play baccarat is to always place a wager on the banker hand. This sounds simple because it is. This is the only strategic thing you can do to improve your chances of winning baccarat.
The good news is that there are some other things you can do, that don’t involve strategy, that can help you play better.
Here’s a list of seven things you can do to play better baccarat that don’t involve strategy. Combine these seven tactics with good strategy for the best possible results.
1 – How Much You Bet
When you’re participating in a gambling activity that has a casino edge, the smartest thing to do is risk the smallest amount possible. Anytime you battle an edge, the longer you gamble and the more you risk, the more you’re going to lose.
You have a great deal of control over how much you bet when you play real money baccarat. Even though the casino edge in baccarat is smaller than most other gambling games, you’re still fighting a casino edge. Use your control over how much you risk to lower your losses.
When you play live baccarat, find the table with the lowest minimum bet amount. And always make the smallest wager possible. Even better, play mobile or online baccarat where the minimum bet amounts are even smaller. I’ve played baccarat for as low as $1 per hand online.
You also can control how much you risk by playing fewer hands. I cover this in a different section in more depth. But you can always leave the table and take a break to reduce the number of hands you play.
2 – Control Your Losses Using Limits
I’m a big fan of loss limits. A loss limit is simply a stopping point determined before you start gambling.
For example, if you set a loss limit of $250 for a baccarat session, you buy in for $250. And if you run out of chips before you planned to stop playing, you stop playing instead of buying more chips.
This might not seem like a big deal, but the truth is that most gamblers keep buying back in and end up losing more money than they planned to. Using a simple loss limit when you play baccarat is a guaranteed way to limit and control your losses.
3 – Lock in a Win When You Can
Most gamblers leave the casino with less money than they arrive with. These gamblers play games and have a chance to win, but end up exchanging money for entertainment. And there’s nothing wrong with this.
Another thing that happens to many gamblers is they see their bankroll go up and down during a playing session. And even if they get ahead by quite a bit, they end up losing most or all of the money they win before they leave.
You probably already know these things because you’ve experienced them yourself. But think back to the last time you left the casino with more money than you started with. Even if it’s been a long time, I bet you remember how good it felt at the time.
And think back to the last time that you got ahead $100 or more and kept playing and ended up losing it all. The feeling you had was probably the opposite of the feeling you remember when you left the casino with a profit.
Nothing you do is going to change the fact that you’re going to lose money in the long run playing baccarat. But there is a simple way to lock in a win more often when you play. This tactic is called a win limit, and it works much like a loss limit.
The next time you play baccarat, leave the game as soon as you get $50 ahead. Or if you play for larger stakes, leave when you get $100 ahead.
This might make you quit playing before you wanted to, but you have to decide if you’re more interested in gambling longer or locking in a win.
4 – You Can Control How Many Hands You Play
If you bet $15 a hand and play 1,000 hands, your total risk is $15,000. If you make the same $15 bets and only play 500 hands, your total risk is $7,500.
Which scenario is going to lead to bigger losses?
The answer is clearly the scenario where you risk twice as much. You’re going to lose more when you risk $15,000 than you’re going to lose when you risk $7,500.
I’ve discussed a few ways to limit your losses, and controlling how many hands you play is another good way to limit or control your losses.
The best way to limit the number of hands you play at the baccarat table is to play online. You can play as slow as you want when you play online or mobile baccarat. Nobody is pressuring you to place a wager or to hurry up.
You can sit anywhere you want and enjoy a beverage or a television show, or even a book between hands. You can take as long as you want, and nobody cares.
I mentioned it in an earlier section, but you also have some control over how many hands you play when you play live baccarat. Play for a set period of time, then take a break. Get something to eat or take a walk around the casino. Or for an even better break, take a walk outside the casino and get some fresh air.
5 – Double Your Bankroll
Not everything is about limiting your losses. The reason most gamblers play baccarat is because they enjoy the gamble. They want to play as long as they can because they enjoy it.
Controlling and limiting your baccarat losses is a good way to be able to play longer. But there’s a simple way to play at least twice as long as you normally can. What if you could easily double your bankroll before you start playing baccarat?
You can locate mobile and online casinos that are willing to double your bankroll when you play baccarat. They offer a bonus on your deposits, and a 100% match bonus is fairly common.
Real money online casinos also offer other benefits that I’ve mentioned above. When you double your baccarat bankroll, play for lower stakes, and control how many hands you play, you can often play 10 to 20 times longer than when you play in a live casino.
6 – Compensation for Your Play
I’ve spent a lot of time explaining why mobile and online baccarat is better than playing the game live. But live baccarat players can get something that most online and mobile players can’t.
This is called compensation, or comps, for their play. You can get compensation by finding the players club and signing up for a free card.
Use your player card every time you play baccarat and you’re going to get some rewards for your play. Even if these rewards aren’t going to be cash, but they will be something that’s worth getting.
I’m a low limit baccarat player, so I usually just earn a free buffet meal, but this is great because I don’t have to pay for it when I get hungry.
7 – Don’t Get Cheated
This section isn’t as long or in depth as the other sections, but it’s just as important. Baccarat scoring is a little challenging to track at first. Once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty easy, but not at first.
You need to make sure you understand how baccarat hands are scored and the rules for the table. And you need to be able to do all of the scoring calculations quickly. This way, you can make sure the dealer doesn’t make a mistake and cheat you out of your winnings.
Most dealers aren’t trying to cheat you, but they can make a mistake. Learn how to quickly score baccarat hands so you always know what’s going on.
I explained the complete baccarat strategy in the opening of this article. Using the simple strategy gives you a low casino edge. But strategy is just the first step.
The next step is to use everything that you control to limit your losses and get as much from casinos as you can. You control how much you risk and how many baccarat hands you play. And you can get compensation and bonuses, depending on where you play baccarat.
You can lock in wins when you use limits. Any time you can walk away from the casino with money in your pocket, you’re in pretty good shape.
Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. …