Baccarat Drawing Rules

Baccarat is a very simple game to play with no decisions made after a bet is placed. The rules are automatic. It means that the Dealer at the table acts according to these rules without consulting players.

The highest total any baccarat hand can have is nine. A two-card total of nine is called a "natural" and cannot lose. An eight is the second-best hand and is also called a natural. If both player and bank are dealt identical hands, it is a standoff (a tie) and neither bank nor player wins.

The dealer gives two cards each to the player and the banker.

  • If either the player or the banker has a total of an 8 or a 9 they both stand. There is no exceptions and this rule overrides all other rules.
  • If the player has total of 6 or 7, the player stands.
  • If the player stands, the banker hits on a total of 5 or less.
  • If the player has total of 5 or less, the player automatically hits and the banker gives the player a third card.
  • If the player gets the third card then the banker draws a third card according to the following rules:

  • Banker has total of 0, 1, 2: Banker always draws a third card.
  • Banker has total of 3: Banker draws if Player's Third Card is 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-9-0 (not 8)
  • Banker has total of 4: Banker draws if Player's Third Card is 2-3-4-5-6-7
  • Banker has total of 5: Banker draws if Player's Third Card is 4-5-6-7
  • Banker has total of 6: Banker draws if Player's Third Card is of 6-7
  • Banker has total of 7: Banker always stands.


Using right strategy for some casino games can be very advantageous to the player. The best example is a game of blackjack, of course. When you know the basic strategy, and understand what is card counting, you can even override the negative expectation and have an edge over the casino about 1%! Card counting is not for Video Poker, but still you can be in very good position when you possess the proper Video Poker strategy.

Unfortunately, there is no strategy that works for Baccarat as the player has not many options - rules are automatic and after you have made a bet you can only hope on your luck. Any baccarat system that is based on the previous hands (and the bets you have made, if any, on those hands) is useless and should be completely disregarded.

But as for any other casino game there is always room for improvement and if you want to establish an effective baccarat strategy there is a few things to consider

Don't bet on "Tie"

Playing Baccarat, you have only a choice of three bets, but it does not mean you don't have any options at all.

  • Betting on the Player Hand - the house edge is 1.29%.
  • Betting on the Bank Hand - the house edge is 1.01%.
  • Betting on a Tie Hand - the house edge is 15.75%.

The house edge numbers mean that Banker hand wins more often in the long run. Even after paying a 5% commission it is still a slightly better proposition than betting on "Player hand". So, there is only one good bet to make - Bank Hand.

As for betting on Tie hand the casino will pay nine for one odds. Unfortunately, the casino advantage on this bet is over 15%. So, don't bet on "Tie".

Well, it may be a very boring when you have only one good bet to make, but still the game of baccarat has one of the best odds in casino if you know this.

Number of decks and commission

As shown on the Baccarat Odds, you can improve your chances by choosing the right game to play: you should look for the casino that offers the lower number of decks played and lower commission.

The best choice is the 6-deck card game with 4 percent commission on the winning "Banker" hand. As for the single deck, you can find it only at some online casinos which use Micro gaming software.

Money management

Knowing only the best bet for Baccarat game will not make a good strategy. The next decision is how much to bet.

It is not a secret that many players risk more than they can afford to lose when they put on the table their money - a really good way to go completely broke. But following some simple rules can help you to increase your chances to win:

  • Even before you sit down at the baccarat table decide how much you are going to lose.
  • Divide up your money and control how much you bet at each round.
  • One of the best ways to manage your money during the play is to pocket a certain percentage of your winnings each time you win or to pocket it all.

For example, you have $500 to wager. Start the game betting the table limit (let's say $25). Put the winnings aside, and at the end of the 25ths round you'll only have played $500 even, which is exactly what you intended to spend and any winnings are yours to keep.

This simple strategy gives you chance to enjoy the thrill of gambling for a longer period without going broke.

And one more advice: Never underestimate luck, it is the biggest factor when you play any game of chance - if you leave the table having more dollars in your pocket than you started (even if it is only $25) you win!

The sad thing about any gambling strategy is the discipline. Remember, if you do not follow your chosen strategy, you do not have strategy at all!

So, bet on the Banker hand, stick to the money management and let the luck be on your side!