Punto Banco

Baccarat is called Punto Banco in many casinos in South America and Europe. "Punto" means "Player", while "Banco" means "Bank", in reference to the two principal bets of the game. Play Now!

How to Play Punto Banco

If the "Punto" hand is a "natural" 8 and the "Banco" hand has a total of 6, all players who bet on "Punto" win.

At the beginning of the game, the dealer (or "croupier") prepares the cards by thoroughly shuffling them and, after the cards are cut by a player, places them inside the shoe. The dealer does not participate in the game; he merely assists the players in making and settling their bets, and advises them on proper procedure.

Then, each player must place a bet in the betting area of the Punto Banco table. A player may bet on either "Punto" (Player), "Banco" (Bank) or "Stand Off" ("Tie").

When all bets are placed, the player acting as the Bank alternately distributes two cards face down to the player who made the largest bet and to himself. The procedure for looking at, announcing, and displaying the hands is somewhat elaborate, but this only adds to the appeal of Punto Banco.

The player making the largest bet faces the two cards and passes them back to the dealer, who announces the total. The hand is then placed on the section of the Punto Banco table marked "Punto." The Banker then faces his hand and passes the cards to the dealer, who announces its total as well and displays the cards on the position marked "Banco."

If either the "Punto" or "Banco" hand has a total of 8 or 9, it is called a "natural." For example, the "Banco" hand has a "natural" 8, and the "Punto" hand has a total of 7, all players who bet on "Banco" win. The dealer then announces the result, such as "Banco wins natural8 against 7," and settles all the bets.

However, if the "Punto" hand is a "natural" 8 and the "Banco" hand has a total of 6, all players who bet on "Punto" wins. The dealer then announces the result, such as "Punto wins natural 8 against 6," and settles all the bets.

A natural 9 beats a natural 8. Two naturals of the same number are considered a "stand-off" or a "tie", in which case all the players who bet on "Stand-Off" wins. The dealer then pays all bets that were placed on "Stand-Off."

Rules of Drawing A Third Card

If neither the "Punto" nor the "Banco" has a natural, then either stands or draws one card only, according to the charts below.

If the "Punto's" hand totals:The player must:
0-5Draw a third card
6-7Stand

If the "Banco's" hand totals:The banker must draw when "Punto's" third card is:The banker must stand when the "Punto's" third card is:
0-2 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10  
3 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,9,10 8
4 2,3,4,5,6,7 1,8,9,10
5 4,5,6,7 1,2,3,8,9,10
6 6,7 1,2,3,4,5,8,9,10
7   1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10

Note: The rules for standing or drawing are inflexible.

The Player draws first, and if, according to the chart, the Player must draw, the Bank deals a third card face up, which is placed alongside the "Punto's" original two cards.

If the Bank must draw, the third card is placed alongside the "Banco's" original two cards. The dealer then announces the result, such as "Bank wins 7 against 3," and settles all the bets.

If the total of the "Banco" hand is nearer 9 than the "Punto", those who bet on "Banco" win.

If the total of the "Punto" hand is nearer 9, those who bet on "Punto" win.

If the two hands have the same total, it is considered a "Stand-Off", those who bet on "Stand-Off" win.

Bear in mind that a hand can become much less favorable after the draw.

Payouts

If you place a winning bet, the payouts are as follows:

Winning Wager Payout
0-5 1:1
6-7 1:1 (less 5% house commission)
Stand-Off (Tie) 8:1

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