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Baccarat Strategy Guide – Learn About the Top Baccarat Strategies

This page is your complete guide to Baccarat strategy. The game is easy to learn, but if you want to consistently win at baccarat, there are a number of strategies to consider.

In this in-depth guide, we’ll cover a variety of baccarat betting strategies and techniques. Our experts will give you the full lowdown on everything you need to know on baccarat strategy to help you beat the house. Once you’ve read through our guide, you’ll be ready to play baccarat like a pro with a winning strategy.

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Betting Strategically – Baccarat Bets to Make and Avoid

Before we dive into specific betting strategies, it’s important to cover standard baccarat bets. Baccarat’s betting rules are fairly simple, with only the Banker, Player, Tie, and sometimes Player Pair or Banker Pair bets available. Before you play, brush up on which bets you should avoid and which ones give you the best chance of winning. If you are new to baccarat, we also recommend that you first take a look at our how to play guide.

Banker is Your Best Bet

Betting on the banker is one of the best baccarat strategies. Even though the house takes a 5% commission on these bets, you stand the best chance of winning when you bet on the Banker. In a 6 or 8 deck game (which is the number most casinos and sites will use), the house edge on the Banker bet is only 1.06%.

The odds of winning on a Banker bet in baccarat are around 45.85%, making it one of the most likely winning bets available. The Player bet, by comparison, typically has a house edge of 1.24% and odds to win of 44.62%. This varies slightly by casino/table, but generally the Banker has a higher chance to win.

Avoid the Tie Bet Altogether

The Tie bet may seem like a good option at first glance. However, if you want to use a winning Baccarat strategy, stay clear of it completely. Even though it can pay up to 9:1, the likelihood of the Tie bet paying off is very low.

The Tie bet has about a 9% chance of hitting and a 14% house edge. Most baccarat players will agree that the Tie bet is not worthwhile because you have such a limited chance of collecting winnings on the bet.

Understanding the odds and house edge of each bet is crucial for a good baccarat betting strategy. For more insight on how these two impact your play, we recommend you check out our expert baccarat odds guide.

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Positive Progression Vs Negative Progression Strategies

Most baccarat betting strategies fall under one of two categories: positive progression and negative progression. It’s easy to understand the two because they are basically opposite strategies, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Once you have a grasp of positive and negative progression systems, you will know whether one of them is the right type of baccarat strategy for you.

Positive Progression

In a positive progression strategy, you increase your bet when you win and reduce it when you lose. For example, if you bet $10 on the Player bet and lost, you would reduce your next bet to $5 (or an amount of your choice). If you win that $5 bet, you bet $10 on the next hand, and so on. The goal with a positive progression system is to maximize your wins and reduce the impact of your losses.

Negative Progression

As you have likely guessed, negative progression is the opposite of positive progression. This strategy dictates that you increase your wager after a loss and decrease it after a win. As an example, if you bet $20 on the Banker and lost, you would increase your next wager to $30 (or an amount of your choice). When negative progression works in baccarat, the strategy can help you recoup losses with big wins. But it can also deplete your funds if you don’t use it cautiously.

Strategies Using Positive and Negative Progression

Now that you’re familiar with the basic differences between positive and negative progression, you can check out the most popular baccarat betting strategies. The strategies we cover below offer specific variations on positive or negative progression. If used wisely, they are some of the best baccarat strategies you can use in the game.

The Martingale strategy is a simple take on negative progression. It’s popular in other casino games like craps or roulette, but can be used effectively as a baccarat strategy. When you use the Martingale strategy, you repeat your bet after a win and double it after a loss. The Martingale is fairly easy to follow.

1

Place a bet. For example, $5 on the Banker.

2

If the Banker won, simply repeat the bet. If the banker lost, you double your next bet to $10.

3

If you lose the $10, double the next wager to $20. On a win, you’d repeat the $10 bet for the next hand.

Here’s how the Martingale baccarat strategy works in practice:

Your BetOutcomeProfit
$10 on BankerWin+20
$10 on PlayerLoss-20
$20 on PlayerWin+40

Martingale can be a winning baccarat strategy, but it has some pros and cons. If you run up against a streak of losses, your bets could get quite high and you could use up your money quickly. On the other hand, multiple well-placed bets could net you a significant stack of chips. Martingale is great if you’re willing to place high bets after a few losses, so we recommend it mainly for high rollers.

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Paroli is a positive progression baccarat betting strategy. When you play using the Paroli strategy, you set an initial bet amount. You keep your bet the same after each loss, but when you win, you double your bet. Some Paroli players choose to double bets only after a certain number of wins (say, 3-5), but others double immediately after each win. Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of the Paroli:

1

Place your initial bet. For this example, let’s say $5 on the Player.

2

If you win that bet, double your next one to $10. On a loss, you would stick to $5 for your next wager.

You continue this pattern for as long as you wish to play. Here’s how this baccarat strategy works in practice:

Your Bet OutcomeProfit
$5 on PlayerLoss-5
$5 on Banker Win+10
$10 on PlayerWin+20

The Paroli system offers a relatively low risk of big losses. However, its shortcoming is that wins are somewhat small unless you find yourself on a hot streak. As a result, it’s a good baccarat betting system for newcomers or risk-averse players.

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This negative progression system is based on the famous Fibonacci sequence from mathematics. The Fibonacci sequence adds each of the two previous numbers to get the next one in the pattern. In betting, it starts with ones and carries on like so: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89…and can continue forever.

It helps to think of your initial bet as a “unit” when using the Fibonacci baccarat betting strategy. For example, a $5 bet could be considered a unit. When you apply this strategy, you move up to the next number in the sequence after each loss. When you win, however, you move back two numbers. It sounds complex but it’s easier to understand in practice:

1

Bet 1 unit. In this example, $5.

2

If your bet loses, bet $5 again (remember, “1” repeats in the sequence).

3

If your bet loses, bet $10 (2 units).

4

After another loss, bet $15 (3 units).

5

If that $15 bet wins, move back two steps in the sequence and bet $5 again.

Here’s another example, this one using $1 as a unit. For the sake of this example, assume you’ve lost five hands already, and you are now betting $8.

Your Bet OutcomeProfit
$8 on PlayerLoss-8
$13 on Banker Win+26
$5 on PlayerWin+10

Fibonacci can be one of the most fun baccarat gambling strategies because you are consistently changing your bet based on the outcome. After a win, you pull back a bit and place a more cautious bet, moving back up the sequence to recoup any losses. It’s a negative progression baccarat strategy, though, so it’s more suited to players willing to take risks. If you have limited funds, it may be best to look for alternatives such as Paroli to make your money last.

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Labouchere is a popular negative progression bacarrat strategy. It’s one of the more complex strategies available, so we recommend it primarily for experienced players.

Labouchere has some similarities to the Martingale strategy in baccarat. Players use it to make up for losses. Rather than aiming for a single big win to offset any lost bets, however, Labouchere is geared toward a number of small wins. It’s intended to incrementally recoup losses over time instead of with one big win.

You start by writing down a sequence of numbers. This can be any sequence, but you will add these digits together, so limit yourself to the higher end of what you’re willing to bet. Your first bet should be the sum of the first and last numbers in the sequence. If you win on that bet, cross out those two numbers, then place another bet. This time your bet should equal the sum of the first and last remaining digits. If you lose your bet, you add another number to the end of the list. If you end up cycling through all your numbers, you write another sequence and start over. Here’s how Labouchere works:

1

Write your sequence. For this example, we’ll use 1-2-3-4-5-6.

2

Bet $7, the sum of 1 and 6. Cross out those numbers. Your sequence is now 2-3-4-5.

3

If you lose the $7 bet from Step 2, add a new number to your list. In this case, we’ll make it 6 again.

4

Your new sequence is 1-2-3-4-5-6-6. Because the 1 and original 6 were crossed out, your next bet is $8, totaling 6 and 2.

In practice, a Labouchere progression strategy looks like this:

Your Sequence: 2-3-4-5-6-7OutcomeProfit
$9 on Banker (7+2)Win+18
$9 on Player (6+3)Loss-9
$12 on Banker (4+8, added to the sequence after a loss)Win+24

Labouchere is complex and has near-infinite permutations depending on the sequence you want to use. Due to its high-risk, high-reward focus, we recommend it for experienced players or high rollers. New players may find it difficult to keep up, but Labouchere is a great baccarat betting strategy to work toward.

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The flat betting baccarat strategy is separate from positive and negative progression systems. Rather than increasing or decreasing your bet based on wins and losses, you simply bet the same amount on every hand. It’s very simple in practice:

1

Bet $10.

2

Regardless of the outcome, bet $10 on the next hand.

As you can see in the table below, flat betting doesn’t change based on the outcome of any given hand:

Your BetOutcomeProfit
$10 on BankerLoss-10
$10 on PlayerWin+20
$10 on BankerLoss-10

Flat betting in baccarat is simple and effective. It won’t recoup losses with big wins, but it’s also less risky than some of the other betting strategies outlined above. Because of this, we recommend it for beginners, especially if you’re still learning how to play baccarat.

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Baccarat Card Counting: Is It a Good Strategy?

Card counting is the process of tracking which cards have been dealt over the course of multiple hands to increase your chances of placing a winning bet. It’s a popular strategy for blackjack, and some believe it can be applied to baccarat as well.

When done correctly, counting cards in baccarat can help you select the most profitable bet and reduce the house edge. However, the advantage is very slim and card counting in baccarat is only marginally profitable.

Baccarat card counting is viable at a land-based casino or in a live dealer game. It won’t work in an online casino, as there is no shoe and the system can shuffle the cards at any point.

Card counting is still a useful skill to have and can help you hone your baccarat winning strategy. If you want to learn the basics, you can review our easy baccarat card counting guide below.

How to Count Cards in Baccarat

First, find a baccarat table with a freshly loaded shoe. This will give you a clean slate and help you get used to the cadence of baccarat card counting.

When a card is dealt (whether it’s to you, the Banker, or another Player), you add or subtract to your “count” depending on the card’s value. Your “count” is simply a number that helps you determine which bet to place on the next hand. Here are the card values that will help you get started:

  • Ace, 2, or 3: +1
  • 4: +2
  • 5, 7, or 8: -1
  • 10, Jack, Queen, or King: 0 (neutral)

Naturally, the count will increase or decrease over time based on the cards being dealt. The total of your count helps you decide which bet to place. On a count of +16 or higher, you wager on the Player hand. At +15 or lower, bet the Banker.

When you break down this baccarat strategy step by step, the process is quite simple:

1

Tally your count using the value above as a hand is played. If you’re playing with a Banker and one other player, it could look like this:

  • Your hand: Ace, 7 (total: 0)
  • Other Player hand: 4, 2 (total: 3)
  • Banker hand: Jack, 4: (total: 2)
2

The count now totals +5, so you bet on the Banker for the next hand.

Card counting in baccarat reduces the house edge by a small margin when done correctly. As cards are removed from the shoe, they make it more likely for either the Player or Banker bet to win. If you can do it well, card counting can give you a small advantage in baccarat.

Land-Based Vs Online Baccarat Strategy

When you first learn how to win consistently at baccarat, it’s important to consider certain factors as you shape your strategy. If you play online instead of at a land-based casino’s baccarat table, you’ll have to change your approach slightly.

There are distinct advantages and disadvantages in each form of baccarat.

In land-based versions and online live dealer baccarat, card counting is possible. Both iterations of the game use a shoe, so you can track which cards are dealt and adjust your count during each hand. At a casino, baccarat typically has a minimum bet (anywhere from $5-$20 on most tables) that can impact your progression betting system. Maximum betting limits make it harder to reach the higher end of your preferred betting system. Set an upper limit in advance so you know from the get-go how much you are willing to bet in total.

Online casinos are virtual opposites from their land-based counterparts in terms of baccarat advantages and disadvantages. You can’t count cards because there is no shoe. The minimum bets tend to be lower at online casinos, so you have more wiggle room to play around with different betting progressions.

Land-Based Vs Online Baccarat Strategy

Our Expert Tips for Perfecting Your Baccarat Strategy

Now that you’re familiar with baccarat strategy, the VSO team has a few final tips to help you perfect your approach to this popular table game.

  • Avoid Looking For Patterns

    Baccarat is a game of chance and the cards (whether physical or virtual) are shuffled randomly. Patterns may seem enticing, but they can be misleading. Instead of seeking out patterns, focus on making smart bets as you play baccarat.

  • Find Games With Lower Commissions

    The house usually takes a 5% commission when you win on the banker bet. If you can find a game with a lower commission, your wins will pay more. Some casinos may also offer no commission baccarat.

  • Go For Tables With Fewer Decks

    Most baccarat tables will use 6 or 8 decks. In this case, fewer is better. You can count cards more easily with fewer decks, and the house edge is slightly diminished in baccarat when the number of decks is smaller.

  • Start With Mini Baccarat

    Baccarat exists in multiple formats. For new players, mini baccarat is an excellent first step. It’s friendly to newcomers and the dealer runs the game—you don’t even need to touch your cards. Big baccarat and midi baccarat are more complex. However, once you’re familiar with mini, you can move up to the other formats.

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Use Your Baccarat Strategy to Win Real Money at Our #1 Casino

Now that you’ve read through our complete baccarat strategy guide, you’re ready to take what you’ve learned and put it to the test! You can apply these strategies at our #1 baccarat casino to win real money. You’ll receive a welcome bonus when you join, and you can use it to play baccarat and a variety of other casino games.

Baccarat Strategy FAQ

There are a number of viable baccarat strategies that can help you win at the popular table game. Our baccarat strategy guide has a complete rundown of strategies, including betting progressions and card counting. The guide covers basic betting, baccarat bets to avoid, popular wagering systems, and much more.

Yes. In fact, our recommended online casinos are great places to test out your baccarat strategy. While you can’t count cards at an online casino, you can in a live dealer game! Online baccarat also has some advantages over the land-based tables. For example, betting minimums online are typically lower, so you can test out different betting progressions without maxing out your bankroll.

Baccarat, unlike blackjack but similar to other casino table games, is a game that’s purely based on chance. Everyone has an equal shot to win. However, you can use betting strategies and card counting to maximize your win potential. Fortunately, baccarat has one of the lowest house edges of any casino game, so you have a fair chance to win whenever you play.

The Banker is the safest bet in baccarat. It has the lowest house edge, but if you win on the bet, you’ll be charged a 5% commission. It’s safe to say you shouldn’t always bet the Banker, because the house edge on the wager is 1.06%. The Player bet, on the other hand, has a house edge of 1.24% with no commission. The best way to bet is to alternate between Player and Banker, and avoid the Tie bet altogether.

While using a good baccarat strategy can help you win more and minimize losses, it’s hard to consistently win at baccarat all the time since it’s a game of chance. Our baccarat game strategies can still help you maximize your chances to win. If you use a progression system wisely, you can often recoup losses on the baccarat table and, hopefully, turn a profit.

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