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Baccarat Side Bets
The "Dragon Bonus" is a popular pair of side bets in mini baccarat. The following two tables show the possible outcomes of both the banker and player Dragon Bonus bets, based on eight decks. The lower right cells show a house edge of 2.65% on the player Dragon Bonus and 9.37% on the banker Dragon Bonus.
Dragon Bonus — Player
|Win by 9||30||18,409,431,764,992||0.003683||0.110492|
|Win by 8||10||34,097,645,543,424||0.006822||0.068217|
|Win by 7||6||89,590,261,473,280||0.017924||0.107543|
|Win by 6||4||141,238,897,317,888||0.028257||0.113027|
|Win by 5||2||166,169,165,987,840||0.033244||0.066489|
|Win by 4||1||186,780,352,174,080||0.037368||0.037368|
Dragon Bonus — Banker
|Win by 9||30||15,390,342,909,952||0.003079||0.092372|
|Win by 8||10||28,305,092,784,128||0.005663||0.056628|
|Win by 7||6||79,517,099,278,336||0.015909||0.095451|
|Win by 6||4||119,200,072,366,080||0.023848||0.095391|
|Win by 5||2||157,275,882,332,160||0.031465||0.062931|
|Win by 4||1||201,147,167,287,296||0.040242||0.040242|
The final table shows the house edge on each bet according to the number of decks.
Dragon Bonus House Edge
This is a side bet rumored to be seen at the Atlantic City Hilton. There are three bets available on the total number of final player and banker cards. 4 cards pays 3 to 2, and 5 and 6 pay 2 to 1. The following table shows the probability of winning and expected value of each bet, based on six and eight decks.
4-5-6 Side Bet — 6 Decks
4-5-6 Side Bet — 8 Decks
Big and Small
The Big and Small are side bets found at Internet casinos using Playtech software.
The Small bet is the same as the 4 bet above, paying 3 to 2 if the total Player and Banker cards equals four. Based on six decks, the probability of winning is 37.8925% and the house edge is 5.26875%.
The Big bet pays if the total Player and Banker cards equals five or six and pays 0.54 to 1. Based on six decks, the probability of winning is 61.1075% and the house edge is 4.35445%.
The Either Pair bet can be found at Internet casinos using Playtech software. It pays if the first two cards of the Player or Banker form a pair. A win pays 5 to 1. The following table shows the probability of winning and expected return under for six and eight decks. They use six at Playtech.
The Perfect Pair bet can be found at Internet casinos using Playtech software. It pays if the first two cards of the Player or Banker form a suited pair. A win pays 25 to 1. The following table shows the probability of winning and expected return under for six and eight decks. They use six at Playtech.
Lucky Bonus is a side bet found in the commission-free baccarat game at the Pala casino in California. The bet pays 18 to 1 if the banker gets a winning six. The table below shows a player advantage of 2.34%. That is not a mistake; the bet has a player advantage. However, the player can not bet more than 10% of his banker bet on the Lucky Bonus. The house edge on the banker bet is 1.33%, for a combined house edge of 1.11%.
Lucky Bonus — 8 Decks
|Banker win on 6||18||269232304455680||0.053864||0.969547|
3-Card Six is a side bet found in the commission-free baccarat game at the Pala casino in California. The bet pays 100 to 1 if both player and banker get a 3-card six, 8 to one if one of them does, and loses otherwise. The table below shows a house edge of 13.37%.
3-Card Six — 8 Decks
|Two three-card 6||100||11932746197248||0.002387||0.238731|
|One three-card 6||8||347224932859904||0.069467||0.555738|
The Super 6 is a side bet on a winning Banker total of 6 played on what I call the U.K. variant of commission-free baccarat. This side bet can be found at some Internet casinos with a live dealer feature.
The Super 6 pays 12 to 1 on a winning Banker total of six. The following table breaks down the odds. The lower right shows a house edge of 29.98% (ouch!).
|Winning Banker 6||12||269,232,304,455,680||0.053864||0.646365|
The Dragon Bet is a side bet found in the game EZ Baccarat. The bet pays 40 to 1 if the banker gets a winning 3-card 7. The table below shows a house edge of 7.61%.
For information on counting the Dragon 7 bet, visit my page Card Counting the Dragon Side Bet in EZ Baccarat by Eliot Jacobson.
The Phoenix is the same thing as the Dragon 7, winning when the Banker wins with a three-card total of seven. However, it lowers the win to 37 to 1. The following table shows a house edge of 14.37%.
The Panda 8 is a side bet found in some EZ Baccarat games. The bet pays 25 to 1 if the player gets a winning 3-card 8. The table below shows a house edge of 10.19%.
For information on counting the Panda 8 bet, visit my page Card Counting the Panda 8 Side Bet in EZ Baccarat.
The Kirin is the same thing as the Panda 8, winning when the Player hand has a three-card winning total of 8. However, the win is lowered from 25 down to 24 to 1. As the following table shows, this increases the house edge from 10.19% to 13.64%.
I have an uncomfirmed report that at some casinos in London have a side bet on a the player or banker getting a king and queen in the first two cards, called the "Royal Match." It should not be confused with the side bet of the same name in blackjack. The bet pays 75 for 1 for a suited king/queen, and 30 for 1 for an unsuited king/queen. A single bet pays for both player and banker hands, so the return column in the following table is the product of the probability, win, and 2 (for two hands). The lower right cell shows a return of 97.87%, for a house edge of 2.13%.
Royal Match — 8 Decks
On January 12, 2010 I noticed an electronic baccarat game at the Bellagio, in which multiple players play against an animated dealer on a video screen. The rules looked standard, except there were a pair of pair bets (player and banker) that paid a premium for a three of a kind. As the tables below show, the probability of a Player three of a kind is 0.3036%, and 0.2835% on the Banker. However, strangely, the Player three of a kind paid more at 75 to 1 than the Banker three of a kind at 68 to 1. The following two tables, based on eight decks, show the overall house edges are 5.27% on the Player, and 8.57% on the Banker.
Player Pair — 8 Decks
|Three of a kind||75||15173295632640||0.003036||0.227672|
Banker Pair — 8 Decks
|Three of a kind||68||14171102634240||0.002835||0.192789|
Color in Majority
This is a set of three side bets I noticed at a live dealer Internet casino. The odds are adjusted at each betting opportunity, as the shoe is dealt. The following table shows the odds at the beginning of an eight-deck shoe and converted to a "to one" basis. Why "more black cards" pays more than "more red cards," I have no idea. The odds are exactly the same on both.
Color in Majority
|More red cards||1.5||1,892,467,242,879,610||0.378615||-0.053463|
|More black cards||1.53||1,892,467,242,879,610||0.378615||-0.042104|
|Equal red and black cards||2.87||1,213,463,789,744,120||0.242771||-0.060476|
This is a set of two side bets I noticed at a live dealer Internet casino. The odds are adjusted at each betting opportunity as the shoe is dealt. The following table shows the odds at the beginning of an eight-deck shoe with odds converted to a "to one" basis. There is no bet available for a mixture of red and black cards, but I include it in the table for informational purposes. Why "all black" pays more than "all red," I have no idea. The probability is exactly the same for both.
|All red cards||22||186,891,927,234,688||0.037390||-0.140030|
|All black cards||24||186,891,927,234,688||0.037390||-0.065250|
|Mixed red and black cards||4,624,614,421,033,980||0.925219|
First Two Banker/Player Cards Same Suit
This is a set of two side bets I noticed at a live dealer Internet casino. It pays if the first two Player or Banker cards are the same suit. The odds are adjusted at each betting opportunity as the shoe is dealt. The following table shows the return table for either bet assuming a win of 2.87 to one, which is the initial setting for the Player bet.
First Two Player Cards Same Suit
For some strange reason, the win for the first two Banker cards starts at 2.86, as opposed to the 2.87 for the Player. This increases the house edge from 3.95% to 4.20%.
Please see my page on the Royal 9.
Total Points Over/Under 9.5
This is a set of two side bets I noticed at a live dealer Internet casino. It pays based on the sum of the final Player and Banker points (so a maximum of 18). The odds are adjusted at each betting opportunity as the shoe is dealt. The following table shows the odds at the begging of an eight-deck shoe. The pays were converted to a "to one" basis.
Total Points Over/Under 9.5
|Under 9.5 points||1.23||2,141,179,778,831,870||0.428373||-0.044728|
|Over 9.5 points||0.66||2,857,218,496,671,490||0.571627||-0.051099|
Total Points Odd/Even
This is a set of two side bets I noticed at a live dealer Internet casino. It pays based on whether the sum of the final Player and Banker points will be odd or even. The odds are adjusted at each betting opportunity as the shoe is dealt. The following table shows the odds at the begging of an eight-deck shoe. The pays were converted to a "to one" basis.
Total Points Odd/Even
|Total points odd||0.92||2,500,277,749,981,180||0.500216||-0.039586|
|Total points even||0.91||2,498,120,525,522,180||0.499784||-0.045412|
Information on this bet has been moved to my page on the Matching Dragon.
For information on this side bet, please see my page on Lucky 8.
For information on this side bet, please see my page on Rabbit Play bet.
For information on this side bet, please see my page on Quik Baccarat bet.
For information on this side bet, please see my page on Power 8's bet.
For information on this side bet, please see my page on the Lucky Max bets.
Written by: Michael Shackleford