How to Win at Baccarat

Baccarat is one of those enigmatic casino games that exudes class, conjuring images of men in tuxedos and women in posh evening gowns laying down chips as the dealer distributes cards. But don’t be fooled by its mystique – the game is easy to learn and fun to play, and with a little practice you can quickly master the nuances of this thrilling card game.

The game is played with from seven to 14 players seated at the table and one dealer. Two hands of cards are dealt: the Player’s hand and the Banker’s hand. Regardless of which side you bet on, your goal is to get a total closer to nine than the opposing hand.

In the past, baccarat was only available in casinos, but now you can enjoy this exciting game at online baccarat sites like DraftKings. These sites offer a variety of baccarat variants, including specialty games based on the lunar calendar. You can also play the popular Chemin de fer variation, which was popularized in France in the late 19th century.

Once all the bets are placed, the dealer deals two cards to each of the player and banker sides. The higher hand wins the round. The cards are compared immediately and the winner is determined by whose total is closest to 9. Note that only the rightmost digit counts in a baccarat hand. A number between 1 and 9 is worth its face value; a picture card and ten are worth zero points. The ace is worth one point, and a double digit is worth its value plus one.

If a player or banker wins, all winning wagers are paid out before the next round begins. The remaining wagers are collected in the discard tray.

To win more money at baccarat, you should practice good stake management. Start with a small bet of $10 and increase it by a unit each time you win. This strategy helps you stay in the game longer, and it prevents you from making large bets when you’re losing.

It’s also important to understand the rules of baccarat and how to manage your bankroll. The best way to do this is to establish a loss limit before you begin playing. Once you reach that limit, stop playing and come back another day.

In addition to the traditional player-banker bet, you can place a number of interesting side bets in baccarat. Depending on the establishment and platform, these side bets can pay up to 11:1 odds. One of the most popular is a player pair bet, which wagers that the player will receive matching cards on the deal. Another option is a banker pair bet, which pays 5:1 odds. Both bets have a low house edge, but the banker pair is more likely to win.