Baccarat Betting Systems

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Baccarat is a card game played between 2 hands, the “player” and the “banker” at casinos worldwide. Each baccarat coup (round of play) has 3 possible outcomes: “player” (player has the higher score), “banker”, and “tie”. There are 3 popular variants of the game. These include punto banco (or “North American baccarat”), baccarat chemin de fer (or “chemmy”), and baccarat banque (or à deux tableaux).

In punto banco, each player’s moves are forced by the cards the player is dealt. In baccarat chemin de fer and baccarat banque, by contrast, both players can make choices. The winning odds are in favour of the bank, with a house edge (which is in place at any casino game to help ensure the casino makes their money) no lower than around 1 percent.

The origins of the game are controversial. Some sources claim that it dates to the 19th century. Other sources claim that the game was introduced into France from Italy at the end of the 15th century by soldiers returning from the Franco-Italian Warduring the reign of Charles VIII.

This isn’t a history lesson about baccarat. Instead, we are going to go into some of the key betting and playing strategies that player’s will use during the game.

Card Counting

Card counting is a playing strategy that was made famous on the blackjack tables. It has been so popularized by movies, books, and TV shows that pretty much everyone is familiar with the basic idea. You may be thinking that this is a system for the mathematically gifted. Actually, it’s quite the opposite.

Card counting can be done by just about anyone. The only thing it requires is some simple addition and subtraction. The aim of this strategy is to determine who will receive a more advantageous hand in each round of the game.

This is indeed something that’s applicable to blackjack, but can you count cards in baccarat and just about every other poker game out there. Seeing as baccarat loosely follows the same gameplay structure as blackjack, where 2 hands are drawn and the highest 1 wins, it’s possible to use card counting when playing baccarat.

There are a number of prerequisites that must be met in order to get the most out of your card counting experience.

First, you absolutely must be playing at a table that uses a 6 deck shoe or an 8 deck shoe. No more, no less. The shoe must be fresh when you start counting or the whole system will fall apart.

The shoe is the device that’s used at just about every poker table. It holds the cards that are dealt out by the dealer. The shoe changes roughly every 30 minutes in online live baccarat, so if you join before this happens, just be patient and sit it out for a little while. The worst thing that could happen is you have to wait half an hour to try it out.

Ideally, you should play at a table where the shoe is used the whole way through. Often this only happens in land-based casinos; however, you can still apply this strategy online. Once you’ve met all 3, or at least the first 2 of these conditions, you’ll be ready to learn the ins and outs of card counting for baccarat.


1 of the oldest betting systems, the Martingale is a negative progression system used in chance-based games like roulette, baccarat, and craps.

It basically assumes that players should bet the same amount again after they win and double their bet after they lose.

For Example:

You bet $5 and you win, then you bet $5 again. However, if you lose, you need to bet $10. You lose again, you bet $20. The idea is that when you eventually win, and actually every time you win, you will be up $5 despite your previous losses.

Here’s another example that might help you understand better. You’ve bet $5, but after 4 losses, you win.

You’ve won $160, but you’ve already lost $155 from your previous bets (the initial $5 + $10 + $20 + $40 + $80 from your last winning bet).

So, in theory, it sounds like you can never lose and that you’ll always be up your initial bet. In reality, things are different. Imagine betting $5 and having a streak of thirteen consecutive losses.

Then your next bet would have to be $40,960, assuming that you have that kind of money.

If you lose again, which is unfortunately more likely than a lot of new and ambitious players think, you’ll have to bet up $81,920, and that’s above the limit of most houses.

This leads me to the main point—when you play Martingale, in the long run you will either run out of money or the casino betting limits will cut your strategy short, even if you’re willing to place crazy high bets.

Systems like Martingale are most typically only going to work for short or quick gambling sessions and fewer betting rounds.

Although baccarat with its low house edge seems like a good option to try the system, it’s not recommended that you try it while playing online.

Online rounds go much faster than playing in an actual physical casino, and the chances of getting your bets back using Martingale are larger if you spend less time playing.

The max recommended playing time if you are going to give the Martingale betting method a shot is 1 hour. Before you come up to that hour playing time, you could play 120 rounds of Baccarat.


Paroli is a classic, popular, tried-and-tested positive-betting system whose goal is to increase the chances of growing your profits by taking advantage of winning streaks.

The Paroli Betting System is over 100 years old, first being used at 1 of the casinos in the gambling mecca of Monte Carlo. It has since become one of the most popular betting strategies in the world.

The system gets its name from the Latin term ‘par’, meaning “one that is equal”. Victor Bethell, the man who came up with this betting system, stressed in his book ‘Monte Carlo Anecdotes’ in 1910 that the Paroli Betting System is a direct progression wagering system that is basically the opposite of the Martingale system.

As a matter of fact, the betting system is even often referred to as the Reverse Martingale system.

In essence, Paroli seems to combine some of the elements of the Martingale system and Anti-Martingale system into one. When it all comes down to it, its 2 main purposes are to generate small wins consistently and to avoid the risk of huge losses.

Paroli is perceived by its players as a less risky betting system. This is because of the fact that large bets are made using money won from the casino rather than a sacrificial bet from the player’s own personal bankroll.

In comparison, followers of the Martingale System use up their own money in order to place large bets after losses.


The Labouchere is not for you if you’re looking for a simple and/or progressive betting system.

It’s one of the more complicated systems and takes some getting used to. I would not recommend it if you’re new to baccarat. Despite its level of difficulty when implementing this system, it can be one of the most advantageous and popular betting systems among players.

Labouchere, Also Known As…

This system is also known by a few other names, including the Split Martingale, the Cancellation System, and American Progression. It’s a negative progression system like the Martingale, so it involves increasing stakes after losing bets.

The main idea is that you should be able to recover the losses from losing wagers with a smaller number of wins. This similar to the Martingale system, another negative progression system, but the Labouchere does not attempt to recover all previous losses with one single win.

Instead, it tries to recover losses with multiple wins. One of the positive aspects of this system is its flexibility. Because the player is able to adjust the initial betting sequence, the player can adjust their levels of risk and reward a little.

This system, as well as the others, are all very popular—you could literally read thousands of books about betting systems. I definitely would recommend practicing and doing more research before you go and start putting money on the table. Use a betting system whenever you play, and you’re going to be more successful than if you just played blind.


Just like any other strategy, these systems take some practice to master. Sure, you might be able to figure them out right away, but it’s different when your money is on the table and other players are involved. I suggest spending a lot of time playing online first—either for free or for money—to get a feel for how the systems work and to practice. Nothing looks worse than going to a table in a physical casino and trying these systems out, only to lose money and have it be really obvious what you’re doing.

Are there any betting systems I left out? Let me know in the comments.

Michael Stevens

Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for since early 2016. ...

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