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7 Baccarat Superstitions to Swing Luck in Your Favor

Baccarat Superstition

Every casino game has its superstitious players, who think that they can bring themselves good luck through certain rituals. But few games are filled with as much superstition as baccarat.

Baccarat players employ a variety of unique acts in hopes of boosting their odds. If you’ve ever sat next to a superstitious baccarat player, you know that they can be quite entertaining.

Of course, you don’t have to simply be an observer. Instead, you can learn these rituals and practice them in hopes of winning more money.

Keep reading as I discuss 7 common baccarat superstitions. I’ll also cover basic baccarat strategy in case you’re a more practical player.

1 – Bending Cards and Slowly Peeking

Many baccarat superstitions were born in Macau, where the game is wildly popular. And one of the most-interesting rituals to come out of Macau involves bending cards and slowly peeking underneath them.

Here’s how this scenario commonly unfolds:

  • A player will receive their first card.
  • They slowly bend the short edge and look at how many “sides” (no. of suits on the edges) it has.
  • The player is careful to block the card’s value with their thumbs while performing this task.
  • They turn the card 90 degrees and slowly bend the long edge.
  • The player may even perform this ritual multiple times until receiving a second card.
  • They repeat the same process upon being dealt the second card.

The point of this practice is to see the sides rather than the actual card values. Players use these sides to guess what card value they might have.

For example, a 2 only has one side at the top and zero on the long edge. A 6 has two sides at the top and three on the long edge.

Another key to this superstition involves not looking at the center. Players only view sides on the edges, because seeing the center would reveal too much about the value.

For instance, 4 and 5 both have the same sides on the top and long edges. But only the 5 has a side in the center.

American casinos don’t let low-stakes baccarat players touch the cards, let alone bend them. Macau casinos are different, though, in that they’re liberal with card handling.

These casinos must also discard decks after every hand, because the bent cards can give away specific values.

The cost of throwing away decks can add up over time. However, Macau casinos are willing to go through numerous decks if it means keeping baccarat tables filled.

2 – Blowing on Cards

Macau baccarat players commonly blow on cards to ward off any bad numbers/sides. This ritual is typically performed after cards have been bent and examined along the edges.

Given that these players only know the sides rather than actual numbers, blowing on the cards is meant to blow away bad sides.

Here’s an example:

  • You’re dealt your first card.
  • You check the top edge and see two sides.
  • The long edge also shows two sides, indicating either a 4 or 5.
  • Your second card features the exact same sides.
  • The hope is that one is a 5 and one is a 4, thus equaling a perfect score of 9.
  • You blow on one of the cards in hopes of ridding the center side.

You don’t have to go through the bending ritual just to blow on cards. After all, you can simply blow on the cardback in hopes of ridding bad numbers.

But again, many superstitious Macau players get their cards first and then blow away the bad sides/numbers.

3 – Trend Betting

Trend betting is the process of either wager with or against trends. These trends refer to winning and losing streaks for gambling purposes.

Here’s an example on trend betting:

  • The banker hand wins three times in a row.
  • You’re convinced that this streak will end based on odds.
  • You bet on the player hand winning the next round.

This example shows the logic behind wagering against the trend. Many players believe that if a certain outcome has won so many times in a row, then the reverse outcome is due for a win.

The other side of trend betting involves wagering with winning streaks. Here’s an example:

  • The banker hand wins four times in a row.
  • You believe that luck is on the banker’s side.
  • You wager on the banker winning the next round.

The logic behind betting with trends is that you believe a winning streak is more likely to continue than end. Therefore, you want to capitalize by wagering that the streak will keep going.

Trend betting isn’t unique to baccarat. A large number of blackjack and roulette players also believe that wagering with or against streaks is the key to winning.

In reality, trend betting is a perfect example of the gambler’s fallacy. The gambler’s fallacy refers to the mistaken belief that past results can affect future outcomes.

In other words, baccarat odds don’t change just because one side has won or lost more. The odds stay the same no matter what has occurred in the previous hands

Therefore, trend betting is as much a superstition as anything else in baccarat. Many casinos even feature electronic boards and baccarat tables that keep track of the last 20-30 hands.

Trend bettors can refer to these boards when tracking the banker and player hands’ winning/losing streaks.

4 – Playing at the Same Dealer’s Table

Choosing a casino table is usually an arbitrary process. But you may develop an attachment to a certain dealer’s table if you continue winning with them.

Baccarat players are especially sensitive about their dealer. If they’ve experienced a hot session with one croupier, then they’ll want to play at this dealer’s table whenever there’s an available seat.

In contrast, these players want to avoid any croupier that has brought them bad luck in the past. Baccarat players may also believe that it’s bad luck when their table changes dealers.

Some gamblers take this superstition so far that theyactually pick up their chips and a find a new table when dealers are switched.

Casinos rotate croupiers from table to table multiple times throughout a shift. Therefore, you need to be prepared to see your lucky dealer leave at some point.

5 – Ripping Cards

Earlier I described how many Macau baccarat players slowly bend cards to look at the number of sides on the edges. But some players are even more destructive in their superstitions, including those who rip up their cards.

Players who subscribe this ritual tear their cards apart after receiving a bad hand. For example, getting a score of 4 is definitely grounds to tear your cards up.

Being able to rip your cards accomplishes two things:

  1. It stays in line with theinteresting nature of Macau baccarat.
  2. It allows you to take out your frustrationson the cards.

Again, American casinos would never let you get away with destroying cards. But Macau casinos are far more lenient and even allow you to tear them apart.

6 – Tapping a Glass or Ashtray

Baccarat tables commonly offer pens and cards so that players can track previous winning hands. But the pens can also be used for a superstitious practice that involves either tapping a glass or ashtray.

This tapping motion is supposed to bring the cards you need to win. All you do is simply tap the pen on the glass/ashtray when cards are being dealt.

I’ve never heard the logic behind tapping things with a pen at the baccarat table. But this ritual must have something behind it, or else there wouldn’t be so many players doing it.

Some gamblers engage in a destructive pen-related practice that involves stabbing good cards through the middle. This is yet another ritual that’s allowed at Macau casinos but not American establishments.

7 – Wearing Red Clothing or Bringing a Good Luck Charm

Yet one more common baccarat superstition involves wearing red to the table. This is especially common among Chinese gamblers, because red has a special place in their culture.

This color symbolizes many things in Chinese culture, including celebration, joy, happiness, and luck. The latter is especially important to baccarat players.

Vegas casinos fully understand Asian baccarat players’strong belief in the color red. This is why high roller rooms often include red color decorations.

Another common baccarat superstition involves bringing a good luck charm to the table. For example, a gambler may wear what’s brought them good luck in a previous session.

Good luck charms certainly aren’t exclusive to baccarat. But they’re highly popular among superstitious baccarat lots.

Will These Superstitions Really Help You Win More in Baccarat?

Most players know deep down inside that baccarat results are purely based on odds. The odds are slightly skewed in the casino’s favor, meaning you need a little luck to win.

But it’s hard to ignore the superstitious side of baccarat when you go on a hot streak. You’ll likely want to create the exact same conditions that preceded your good fortunes.

Here are examples of things you might do after a great baccarat session:

  • Wear the same outfit the next time you play.
  • Eat the same lunch and/or dinner.
  • Arrive at the casino at the exact same time.
  • Look for the same croupier who dealt your cards.
  • Bring the friend(s) that played with you in the previous session.

Will recreating these elements boost your chances of winning? Will any of the seven rituals I’ve covered do the same?

The answer to both is no. I’m a firm believer in logic when it comes to gambling, and you can’t change the odds simply by bending cards or bringing good luck charms.

Again, though, it’s hard to resist the urge to be superstitious after winning lots of money in baccarat. I won’t fault anybody who stays with their rituals during a hot streak.

But if you want to learn the most-logical way to win in baccarat, then check out the strategy below.

What Tangible Baccarat Strategy Can You Use to Win?

Baccarat strategy is so easy that any beginner can quickly learn it and start playinglike an expert.

Everything begins with understanding the three available bets. You can wager on the banker hand winning, the player winning, or both hands tying.

The banker’s and player’s objective is to get as close as possible to a score of nine. Each side receives 2-3 cards, and the first digit of the score is removed when it equals 10 or higher.

You don’t need to understand anything about the hand scoring to play. But it’s nice to know the basics so that you can at least follow how your bets are doing.

Perfect strategy involves wagering on the banker hand every time. The banker bet carries the lowest house edge at 1.06%.

Casinos take out a 5% commission from winning banker wagers in order to maintain their advantage. Despite the 5% commission, the banker hand is still the best.

The player hand isn’t far behind with a 1.24% house edge. Some gamblers make this wager for variety’s sake or trend betting purposes.

But the reality is that the player hand only serves to reduce your chances of winning by 0.18%.

The tie is attractive from the perspective that it offers either an 8:1 or 9:1 payout for wins. But the downside is that this bet has a high house edge in both cases.

The tie bet house advantage is 14.36% with 8:1 payouts involved, and 4.85% with 9:1 payouts. The high payouts might be attractive, but your long-term odds of winning are far better with the banker hand.

Look for the Top Baccarat Games

Most baccarat games are the same across the board in terms of your chances of winning. But some variations offer slightly better odds based on their rule differences.

EZ baccarat is one such example, because it features a 1.02% house edge. While this isn’t much different from the standard baccarat game, it at least gives you a slightly better chance to win.

This game is more favorable, because it doesn’t take a commission from winning banker bets. But it does have an odd rule that makes up for this advantage.

EZ baccarat pays 1:1 on winning banker wagers just like standard games. The one exception, though, is that you push with banker bets that win with a three-card 7.

Considering how this occurrence only happens on 2.25% of hands, it doesn’t negatively affect your odds of winning too much.

When you combine the three-card 7 push with no commissions, you come out with a favorable 1.02% house edge.

6-deck baccarat games also offer thin value. Moving from the standard eight decks to six decks lowers the banker hand house edge to 1.056%.

This extra 0.004% won’t make you a millionaire. But it’s worth taking any baccarat advantage you can get.

One game that you absolutely want to avoid is “reduced commission” baccarat. This version is just like EZ baccarat in that it’s doesn’t take commissions from winning banker wagers.

The reduced commission game makes up for this, though, by only paying 50% onbanker bets that win on a score of 6.

This rule seems more favorable than the one in EZ baccarat at first glance. After all, you’re receiving a 50% payout rather than a push.

But the problem is that the banker hands win with a score of 6 on 5.39% of hands. Given that this occurs over twice as much as a three-card 7, no commission baccarat carries a 1.46% house edge on banker wagers.

If you’re going to play the no commission variation, then you’re better off sticking to player bets (1.24%).Better yet, don’t play this game at all and stick with standard baccarat.

Conclusion

Some baccarat players don’t look at their superstitions as mereformalities that spice up the action. Instead, they passionately believe that bending cards or wagering on trends will help them win more.

This line of thinking is what makes baccarat truly unique when compared to the average casino game.

It’s especially impressive to see this game’s odd rituals put into practice in Macau casinos. Players here do everything from rip cards apart to slowly bend the edges.

None of this is possible in other casinos worldwide, where touching the cards is a no-no. But Macau casinos are friendlier in terms of allowing players to touch and even destroy cards.

Of course, you don’t have to travel to Macau just to employ baccarat superstitions. Wearing luck shirts, trend betting, and tapping on glasses/ashtrays can be done anywhere in the world.

Just remember, though, that superstitions don’t technically change baccarat odds — no matter how much you may believe.

Instead, the best way to beat baccarat is by simply wagering on the banker hand every time. Doing so cuts the house edge down to 1.06%.

You can also get a small boost by looking for better games like EZ baccarat (1.02% house edge) and the 6-deck game (1.056%). But the number one thing to do is bet on the banker hand.

Aside from this, you can also use various rituals in hopes of getting Lady Luck on your side. You’ll no doubt have more fun with your baccarat sessions when exercising a few superstitions.