Baccarat Variations

A Handy Guide to All Popular Types of Baccarat for US Players

Baccarat is one classic casino game that’s easy and fun to play. It’s also a game that's widely used as a backdrop in many Hollywood movies adding to its glamor and appeal. As a popular casino game with a true ‘Las Vegas flavor’, it’s available in different variants and all these are discussed below.

Most popular Baccarat variants 

Baccarat is a widely popular classic casino game that’s also available in different variants. Most games differ in terms of the table size or the number of players that can be accommodated, the availability of special bets, or the absence of insurance. Although you can find different online baccarat variations, the baccarat game rules remain the same. Here, you’ll bet on the side which gets a score of ‘9’ or close to it. You can bet on the ‘Banker’, ‘Player’ and ‘Tie’. The only change here is the type of baccarat strategy that you’ll use depending on your preferred baccarat.

Chemin de Fer 

Chemin de fer is a popular variant that quicker than the classic baccarat. In this game, six decks of cards are in play and shuffled together. The baccarat round starts to the right of the dealer and continues counterclockwise. Just like most types of baccarat, you will pay a commission on a winning Banker’s bet, usually 3% to 5%. The commission is added to compensate for a higher chance of the Banker’s bet winning at 46% probability.

Punto Banco 

This is the most widely played version of baccarat and it’s available in many leading US online casinos. In some casinos, this game is simply called ‘baccarat’ that uses six to six to eight decks of cards that are shuffled together. This game has one of the lowest house edges in the business at 1.24% with 1.06% for the Banker’s bet. A Tie bet pays 8 to 1 and carries an edge of 14.4%.

Baccarat Banque 

In this variant, the Banker’s position is more permanent. The Banker holds the position until all the playing cards have been dealt or until he decides to retire the position. At the start of a round, the Banker deals three playing cards face down, one card to the nearest player on the left and right, and the Banker’s side. If the side of the Player wins, a payout of 1:1 is earned. The Banker then pays out or takes all the best depending on the result of the round.

No Commission Baccarat

In standard baccarat, the casino charges a 5% commission on a winning Banker’s bet. The commission is in place to offset the higher odds of winning a Banker’s bet. When we say a No Commission Baccarat, this only means players don’t need to worry about the fee. If you play the Banker and it wins with a total of ‘6’, you only receive half of your bet. In short, there’s a probability that you will only win half of your wager.

EZ Baccarat 

For many players, EZ Baccarat is the easiest variant to play. In this game, there are two hands: Banker and Player and a third bet called a ‘Tie’. Your job is to bet which side will get a score closest to ‘9’ or play the other bet. In EZ Baccarat, a Tie pays 9:1 and all other wins pay even money. Also, this baccarat variant takes out the standard commission on a Banker win with a total of ‘7’. Instead, the Bank’s hand is ‘barred’. This means that the Tie and Player’s bets lose the round. 

European Baccarat 

Most baccarat variants share the same bets and rules and it’s true with European Baccarat. It’s a traditional game where you bet on whether the Player or Banker will get the best hand value or if the round will end in a tie.  This variant features the same house edge as other types of baccarat, and this usually ranges from 1.06% to 1.17%. The house edge for the type of bet can go up to 14.44% depending on the payout odds.

American Baccarat

This is a popular variant played in North America that uses eight decks of cards. Like all online baccarat variants, your objective is to bet on a side which you think has the highest value. You can wager on a ‘Banker’, ‘Player’ or ‘Tie’. A successful bet on the Player pays 1:1. In a winning Banker’s bet, the payout is 0.95: 1 with an allotment of 5% for commission. The Return to Player (RTP) percentage for a Banker’s wager is set at 98.94%.

Baccarat Squeeze

Like all baccarat variations, Baccarat Squeeze lets you bet on three options: Banker, Player, or a Tie with the addition of additional bets called Pairs. What makes the game different is the ritual that happens on the betting table. The dealer ‘squeezes’ or slowly reveals the card making it more exciting. The game’s payouts are also familiar to most players. You are paid 1:1 for a successful Player’s bet and there’s a commission for your winning Banker’s bet. Finally, a Tie bet features odds of 8-1.

Dragon Tiger 

This is an exciting variant of baccarat that boasts simple rules with an Oriental touch. Dragon Tiger is a two-card version of the classic baccarat where the dealer draws two cards- Dragon and Tiger. As a player, you simply bet on which card or side has a higher value. Also, there are some proposition wagers that you can play on each card. In this game, the Dragon/Tiger bets feature a house edge of 3.73% with 32.77% for a Tie bet.

Baccarat tables 

The different types of baccarat games also differ in terms of the tables used or the number of players that it can accommodate on each round. You will find baccarat tables for a large party with up to 14 players, and some can only accommodate just one or two players at a time.

Big Table Baccarat 

Also called the ‘Maxi’ baccarat, this game can accommodate up to 14 players at a time.  The players with the highest bets can look at the hand before it’s announced by the dealer. This makes the Big Table Baccarat more exciting, but it doesn’t affect the game’s odds or payouts.

Mini Baccarat

The Mini Baccarat is commonly played in modest settings. Here, the table is like a standard blackjack table, and the playing cards are assigned by the dealer directly from the shoe. Also, the minimum and maximum bets here are smaller.

Midi Baccarat

Midi Baccarat is like Mini Baccarat in terms of basic rules except that in this game, the cards are handled and revealed by the person with the largest bet. Also, this game traditionally hosts up to nine players and is played at a smaller table.

Which Baccarat variation should you choose? 

Baccarat is a classic and lucrative casino game that’s available in different variants.  The availability of baccarat variations is a testament to its popularity and colorful history. With a wide range of options, how do you pick what’s best to play in real money? 

Although they share similarities in general types of bets and rules, they have a few variations too. You can see these variations in the slight changes in baccarat rules, the available bets to play, and their respective payouts. For example, in the classic versions of the game, you can bet on one of three outcomes. However, in other online baccarat variations, you can bet on pairs or side bets. Since there are slight variations in terms of odds and types of bets to play, players may need to consider different Baccarat betting strategies when playing these variants. All these should be taken into consideration when checking and selecting the best game to play.

Another way to assess and choose the best baccarat variant is to check its house edge. To improve your chances in a blackjack game, you should pick the one with the lowest house edge.

Baccarat variants with the lowest house edge 

Baccarat VariantTypes of Bets to PlayHouse Edge
EZ BaccaratPlayer, Banker, Tie, and Side Bets1.02%
Classic and American BaccaratPlayer, Banker, and Tie1.06%

Baccarat variations that payout the most 

In baccarat, you will also find some variants that pay better than the rest. If you’re after a lucrative baccarat experience, make sure to check out the list below:

EZ Baccarat

A side bet called ‘Dragon 7’ pays out when the Banker wins using a three-card seven. However, the house edge sits at a high of 7.61%. ‘Panda 8’ is another optional side bet that pays 25 to 1.

No Commission Baccarat

You are not charged a commission for a winning Banker’s bet.

The best variants to try when you’re new to casino 

Baccarat offers some of the simplest and easy-to-follow rules in online gambling. Just bet on the side that you think has the highest score and you win. As the game becomes popular, new baccarat variants become available to players. These new baccarat variations include additional side bets and some rules to keep the play more entertaining. However, some of the bets may be complicated to beginners, and some bets may have a higher house edge. If you’re a beginner, we recommend that you stick with the following online baccarat variations:

Punto Banco

This is the most popular variant in US casinos.

EZ Baccarat

It’s another easy-to-play game that removes the standard Banker’s commission.

Dragon Tiger

In this baccarat variant, you simply pick a side: Dragon or Tiger.

Types of Baccarat to play if you’re a pro 

There are a few baccarat variants that are perfect for pros. These are the games with side bets that boast huge payouts.

Chemin de Fer

In this variant, a player can become a Banker and he can put up a wager that others can bet against.

Big Baccarat

This is an exciting variant that lets you play with up to 14 players.

Baccarat Squeeze

The game offers a fun ritual where the dealer ‘squeezes’ or reveals the card slowly.

Baccarat variations you should avoid 

If there are games to play then there are variants, too, that you should avoid. These baccarat games often boast a higher house edge with complicated betting rules.

No Commission Baccarat

There’s a chance that you lose half of your bet even on a winning round.

Baccarat Banque

Avoid this game if you’re a beginner and you don’t want to act as a Banker.

Frequently asked questions

Some of the popular variants are Punto Banco, Chemin de Fer, No Commission Baccarat, and EZ Baccarat.
In this classic casino game, you can bet on one of the following outcomes: Banker, Player, or a Tie.
This is a 5% commission on your winning Banker’s bet.
In this variant, the 5% commission on the winning Banker’s wager is removed. However, if your total is ‘6’ in a winning Banker’s bet, you only receive half your bet.
Yes, most US casinos today offer these classic game variants in the free demo.