If either hand has a total of 8 or 9 (nine is the highest), then it is called a ‘Natural’ and no more cards are dealt. If it is not a natural, then depending on the value of each hand the casino dealer may instruct the card dealer to deal a third card. The decision when to deal a third card follows precise set rules used by all casinos.
This is the Baccarat Third-card-rule as follows:
Player’s Baccarat third-card-rule
- If either the player or the bank have a total of 8 or 9 on the first two cards no further cards are drawn. The resulting hand is called a natural and the hand is over.
- If the player’s total is less than or equal to 5 the player’s hand draws a third card.
- If the player does not draw a third card, then the bank’s hand stands on 6 or more and takes a third card on a total of 5 or less. If the player does take a third card then the Bank’s third-card-rule below will determine if the bank takes a third card.
Banker’s Baccarat third-card-rule
- If the bank’s total is 2 or less then bank draws a card, regardless of what the players third card is.
- If the banks total is 3 then the bank draws a third card unless the players third card was an 8.
- If the banks total is 4 then the bank draws a third card unless the players third card was a 0, 1, 8, or 9.
- If the banks total is 5 then the bank draws a third card if the players third card was 4, 5, 6, or 7.
- If the banks total is 6 then the bank draws a third card if the players third card was a 6 or 7.
- If the banks total is 7 then the bank stands.
The key difference between drawing strategies for baccarat banker and baccarat player is that whether the banker draws is largely dependent on the player hand. The banker takes a third card when the player draws one that is more likely to help that hand. That’s the key to the disparity in percentage of wins.
In a way, it makes baccarat a similar situation to blackjack. In blackjack, the house has an edge because the dealer acts after players have completed their hands.
Do you play casino Baccarat? How do you play? Baccarat Banker or Baccarat Player?