Baccarat vs. Blackjack – Complete Comparison

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Baccarat vs. blackjack – it’s a debate that persists to this day with staunch supporters on both sides of the argument. When comparing the two popular casino games, you have to consider several factors, such as house edge, basic strategy, and popularity.

Online gambling for the two popular casino card games involves several variables, especially when you consider your odds of winning. I try to take everything into account in this post.

Here is my complete guide to comparing baccarat and blackjack.

Baccarat vs. Blackjack Rules

The rules of each game will provide you with key information on how strategy varies significantly. One clear distinction I want to make is that with baccarat, you have no control over what happens once the hand starts, but with blackjack, you have to make several key decisions.

Let’s examine the rules of baccarat and blackjack more closely:

Baccarat Rules

Before the game begins, players must place a bet and wait for the dealer to dole out everyone’s cards. You have three different bets you can make: the player’s hand, the dealer’s hand, or a tie. The bet must be placed before the cards are dealt.

Your job as the player is to obtain a hand with a value closest to nine. In baccarat, two through nine cards represent their face value amount. Aces have a value of one and tens/face cards have a value of zero.

For example, you have a hand that contains the nine of clubs and the six of hearts. This adds up to a value of 15, but the hand has an actual of 5. That’s because you can’t bust in baccarat, if you hit 10 or more, the first digit is removed.

The rules for adding more cards to the hands and stopping are fixed, so the players have no control.

Blackjack Rules

The rules of blackjack are fairly simple – anyone can quickly pick up on how the game works. The goal is to obtain a hand with a collective value of 21 without exceeding that number.

Numbered cards are valued at their face value and an Ace has a value of one or eleven. Tens and face cards are worth a value of ten.

The dealers will provide the players with two cards with which everyone forms their initial hand. Then, players determine if they want to hit or stand, meaning that they want to add another card to their hand or retain their existing hand.

The opportunity to make a decision makes blackjack very different, as well as the fact you can bust here. If you have more than 21 points, you automatically lose the hand.

Blackjack vs. Baccarat Strategy

Blackjack and baccarat have several key differences in how you should strategize and play each hand. Ultimately, the goal of both games is to give yourself the best odds to win every hand and reduce the advantage of the casino as much as possible.

To succeed at both games, you’ll need to learn thoroughly how to play them and know how to apply your skills. You also want to prepare yourself for certain situations and make bets accordingly. Also, practice makes perfect – you have to keep playing to get better.

Baccarat Strategy

Ultimately, the safest wager you can make is to bet on the dealer, and it all comes down to how the math works. That’s because the dealer has an automatic house edge of 1.06%.

Because the dealer has a small statistical advantage, you’ll benefit by betting on the dealer more often than the player or a tie.

You should also never bet on a tie – many people who avidly play baccarat will tell you that it’s a waste of money. Experienced players never bet on ties. Your goal is to manage your bankroll and eliminate any unnecessary risks, so follow that rule as well.

Once you picked your bet and the hand starts, baccarat has no more strategy to it. That’s why all the decisions are made before that.

Blackjack Strategy

You should pay close attention to the dealer’s hand at all times – they only have

0.50-1.5% advantage in most versions, which is a small margin but an advantage nonetheless.

When it comes to optimizing your odds of winning, blackjack comes down to knowing when to hit, stand, split, and double down. For example, your hand is a hard 17 – you should always stand no matter what.

The easiest bet you can make when playing blackjack is to double down when you have a hard 11. It’s the most powerful starting hand and you have the highest probability of winning at this point.

The best blackjack players in the world got incredibly good because they prepare themselves for every possible situation. The best thing you can do is continue playing the game because with repetition, you’ll begin to recognize patterns and other dynamics.

The main difference here is that your strategy changes while you’re playing blackjack – you should make adjustments accordingly after you begin your hand. You can also try counting cards in live casinos which is another way to gain an advantage.

Baccarat vs. Blackjack House Edge

Another big difference between baccarat and blackjack is the house edge – baccarat has fixed odds, whereas the odds with blackjack will vary based on your decisions.

House edge, as we know, can skew the outcomes, but when you play the odds to your advantage, you can greatly improve your chances of winning.

In baccarat, the house edge is low – the casinos have a 1.06% advantage when you bet on the dealer. In blackjack, if you a have solid strategy, you can reduce the house edge to 0.50% in the more favorable variations, which is one of the smallest margins for a casino game.

When you bet on the player in baccarat, the house edge increases to 1.24%. However, when you bet on a tie, the house edge increases dramatically to 9.5%, so don’t do it!

The different game rules for blackjack can increase or decrease house edge. For example, one rule states that you can double down after a split. When this occurs, the house edge will decrease by 0.15%.

You should keep in mind that casinos are very keen to load up blackjack tables with players. They know that the inexperience at the table will ultimately sway the odds in favor of the house.

Baccarat vs. Blackjack Popularity

There’s no question that both blackjack and baccarat are incredibly popular. The best online casinos offer them both, as well as most live gambling venues.

Why are both games so popular? They appeal to many different types of players. If you are someone who enjoys the element of chance, baccarat is a great option. Blackjack, however, caters to players who like to control their own destiny.

Debating over the merits of both games and which one is more popular seems a little frivolous. However, when you consider the rules, strategies, and house edge of both games, you’ll begin to understand why each game has such universal appeal.

It all comes down to personal preference – each game has its pros and cons. Each game also has unique aspects to it that players enjoy. You can find baccarat and blackjack all over the world – plus you can play high stakes versions of both games.

It must be mentioned that baccarat is the game that attracts more high-rollers, at least in live casinos. Something about it attracts the biggest gamblers out there.

Baccarat vs Blackjack Online

These popular casino games are available online, which is why you should browse through some of the most reputable venues. Check out our recommended online blackjack casinos and top online baccarat casinos if you want to give it a go.

The top sites offer excellent bonuses, a good variety of tables, and affordable limits to all of their players.

Petko Stoyanov
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About Petko Stoyanov
My name is Petko Stoyanov, and I've been a gambling writer for more than ten years. I guess that was the natural path for me since I've loved soccer and card games for as long as I can remember! I have a long and fairly successful history with English Premier League betting and online poker, but I follow many other sports. I watch all big European soccer leagues, basketball, football, and tennis regularly, and I keep an eye on snooker, volleyball, and major UFC events.