We introduce you to the most popular baccarat tips and tricks, including those embraced by the multitudes of players and those that experienced gamblers warn against. What strategy could there be in a game of pure chance and no skill?
Baccarat players don’t have a say in whether to stay, hit or double like blackjack players do; it’s only a one-time decision on how much to bet and on which side to bet, even before anything has been dealt on the felt. In baccarat, strategy is more about sensibility: it means establishing more mindful ways to bet, and for the more superstitious lot out there, it involves fanciful ways to read the mysterious footprints of fortune.

Here, we cover the most helpful baccarat tips:

  • we explain gambling experts’ top advice: always bet on the Banker
  • we debunk some baccarat strategy myths
  • we provide tips on how to optimize betting strategy
  • we explain how to use baccarat Roadmaps

However, statistically speaking, the Banker hand has an in-built advantage over the Player hand, thus, the mathematically logical thing is to keep betting on the Banker. The Banker bet has an RTP of 98.94%, whereas the Player bet has an RTP of 98.76%. Math whiz gamblers advise: always bet on the Banker!


Debunking Baccarat Strategy Myths

On a similar note, many players assume that a shoe will seek to balance itself over time and compensate for ‘unnaturally’ repetitive wins on one side, thus eventually switching to the other side. This is known as Gambler’s Fallacy. It is the presumption that nature seeks balance, especially in a casino, no less at a baccarat table. For instance, it is well known that the typical 8-deck baccarat shoe (excluding the last 13 cards marked by a cut-card) will have about 81 hands before the shuffle. Statistically, the chances for each bet are the following: 37 Banker wins, 36 Player wins, and 8 Ties. The so-called regressive player, i.e. the one assuming a shoe will make up for a deficit of certain wins, will bet on the Banker mid-shoe, if Player has already won most rounds. Don’t assume that the baccarat shoe has a mind of its own, it will not seek to compensate imbalances! You could get tails 3 or 50 times out of 50 flip coins, the coin has no preference.

Baccarat Tips: How to Optimize Your Betting Strategy

Even though baccarat experts warn against trusting patterns, there are still basic tips that can be useful to novice and experienced punters alike, including how to manage your bankroll and how to optimize your bets in terms of bet size and side to bet one.

Valuable Baccarat Game Tips That Will Sharpen Your Play Strategy

Never bet on a Tie!

Tie bets have a very high house edge, 14.4 %, so unless your gut feeling is poking you relentlessly, better stay away from Tie bets/Egalities.

Always bet on the Banker!

As we already pointed out, statistics suggest that the Banker wins slightly over 50% of the time.

Ride the Banker until it loses!

You can also ditch the Banker when it loses. If the Banker loses, you can skip one hand, i.e. make no bet, and then bet on the hand that has just won. When Player loses, go back to Banker. This move is not statistically justified, but it takes into account that Banker losses do occur often also.

Change your bet size using the 1-3-2-4 Strategy!

Varying the size of your bets can help you minimize losses and, in some cases, even maximize wins. The 1-3-2-4 Strategy advises betting one unit at the first round, three units at the next round, then decrease down to two units and increase your bet up to four units right afterwards. Keep repeating the same 1-3-2-4 scheme again and again as long as you keep winning. When your bet loses, just jump straight back to betting one unit.

Mini baccarat is like a one-handed bandit!

In traditional big table baccarat at land-based casinos, the game is slow and elegant, with probably 40 baccarat rounds an hour. Mini baccarat online, however, can swallow up your bankroll in no time, as the game is fast and has something like 150-200 rounds an hour. Set yourself betting limits and leave before you start spending the kids’ inheritance!

There really can be no baccarat strategy in the short term!

If you are looking to profit from playing baccarat, realistically speaking, it only makes sense to optimize your betting if you play more than a few rounds.

Baccarat Roadmaps Explained

Roadmaps are pictorial representations of the game,
more precisely, of past wins and winning patterns, and are one of those tools baccarat experts scoff at.

Don’t let that put you off, roadmaps are uniformly accepted in online gambling and a vast majority of players do take them into account. In fact, you will rarely find an online casino whose baccarat games don’t have roadmaps. There is no universal guide on how to apply the information from the roadmaps; players bet as they seem fit. Whether you choose to use them or not, it’s good to know how to read roadmaps and know what they mean.

Road depiction: the ‘roads’ representing the game history and trends are made up of differently colored circles and symbols, and displayed in a grid of maximum 6 rows and minimum 12 columns. There are five roadmaps: two show the history of the game, i.e. the Big Road and the Bead Plate; the other three, i.e. The Big Eye Boy, The Small Road and The Cockroach Pig, are derived from the main ones and only show trends. We explain each of them below.

The Big Road

Results are recorded, starting at the top left corner of the grid. Here is how the results of each baccarat round are visually represented:

  • Banker win – hollow red circle
  • Player win – hollow blue circle
  • Tie – a green line across the most recent circle
  • Multiple Ties – a number next to the green line
  • Pairs – a dot on the edge of the circle, red dot for Banker and blue dot for Player
  • Natural – yellow dot in the middle of the circle

Results can be recorded both vertically and horizontally, it all depends on the whether the new win matches previous one. If the next result is the same as the previous, the circle goes in the cell under the previous one; if it result is different, it goes in the next column. Thus, you can see winning streaks displayed vertically.

After 6 consecutive wins, the streak turns horizontally and continues along the 6th row. Betting on such a streak is known as ‘Follow the Dragon’, since the streak looks like a dragon tail on the roadmap. If another streak meets the first one, it continues along the 5th row and is called ‘Double Dragon’. ‘Ping Pong’ is when Banker and Winner keep alternating in winning.


The Bead Plate

The Bead Plate is also a direct representation of each hand. Colors are the same like in the Big Road, but there are a few differences:
the circles are solid and superimposed with Chinese characters depicting the result;
the results are recorded only vertically, column by column;
Ties are shown as separate green circles;
Naturals and Pairs are not displayed.

Derived Roadmaps

All derived roads are based on the Big Road.

They don’t show the history of each hand but only depict patterns. Colors and symbols signify different information than in the Big Road. Red hollow circles mean there is a pattern, blue hollow circles mean the shoe is ‘choppy’ and no pattern has recently occurred. The derived roads don’t start at the beginning of the shoe, but once a certain hand has been dealt.

the big road

The Big Eye Boy

The Big Eye Boy starts with the hand after the first hand in the second column of the Big Road. If the respective hand in the Big Road starts a new column, you compare the two previous columns. If they are of the same length, put a red circle in. If they are not, a blue circle. If the hand in question from the Big Road is the same as the previous one, compare the cell to the left of that hand with the cell directly above. If the cells are the same, then red. If not, then blue. Ties are skipped. In the case of a Dragon tail, assume that the ‘tail’ continues horizontally instead of turning right.


The Small Road

Similar to Big Eye Boy. The only difference is that entries start with the hand after the first hand in the third column of the Big Road.

If the Big Road hand creates a new column, you compare the first and third columns to the left of the new column. If the Big Road hand is the same, compare the cell two cells to the left from that one with the cell directly above.

The Cockroach Pig

Works like the Small Road, except it uses slashes instead of circles and starts with the hand after the first hand in the fourth column of the Big Road. If the Big Road hand in question causes a new column, compare the first and fourth columns to the left. If the Big Road hand is the same as the previous outcome, compare the cell three cells to the left of the latest entry with the cell directly above.

Choosing a Casino Baccarat Strategy

Whether you choose to keep a tidy strategy by only betting on the Banker or you would rather trust the fickle meanderings of luck for some intuitive logic behind, beware that lucrative winnings in baccarat really cannot be guaranteed. What is completely within your power, however, is enjoying the game and betting wisely, so you can keep playing as long as possible with your present bankroll. As gamblers, we are immersed completely in the game with all its ceremoniality and hold-your-breath factor. This makes establishing a sensible betting strategy all the more important. Keep reviewing these casino baccarat tips to keep a level head when betting at your favorite online casino!