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Baccarat for Beginners

The game of baccarat is a multiplayer game that is traditionally played in casinos--both land-based and online. The game resembles blackjack to a degree, though the objective is to create a hand with a point value of nine instead of 21.

Card Values and the Objective

Since the objective of the game is to create a hand of nine points, or as close to nine points as possible, it is important for players to understand the different card values and how the scoring system works to play baccarat. Aces are always counted as one point; face cards are assigned a point value of 10; cards two through 10 are assigned a point value based upon their respective face values. If the player's score reaches the two-digit mark, the player will simply remove the first digit and the score will be the equivalent of the second digit in the series.

Placing and Winning Bets

Like many casino games, baccarat players are required to place a wager and decide which hand they would like to bet on. In baccarat, players can choose to bet on the banker hand, the player hand, or a tie. A natural--or a two-card hand of eight or nine--is always an instant win. If the player and the banker tie, no one wins the hand unless the player has bet on the tie. The odds for winning a tie bet are very slim but the payout is the largest in the game--eight or nine to one.

The best way for beginners to practice playing baccarat is in an online setting. There are free baccarat rooms scattered across the internet that beginning players can utilize in order to hone their skills before playing for real cash.