Knowing the Baccarat terms can elevate your game, allowing you to play with confidence and strategic insight, and answering your questions before you start playing.

Let’s dive right in!

  • Action: In gambling, “action” is a term that goes beyond its everyday use. It refers to the total amount of money you wager during a Baccarat session. It’s not just about a single bet; it’s the cumulative amount, adding up every twist and turn of the cards​​.
  • Baccarat: The name of the game itself, “Baccarat,” has a meaning that’s integral to understanding the game. In Italian, it translates to ‘zero’, signifying the worst hand you can hold in the game – any hand totaling zero value​​.
  • Banco/Banker: In Baccarat, “Banco” is the Spanish term for the banker, who plays a central role in the dynamics of the game. When you place a “Banker Bet,” you’re betting on the banker’s hand to win, a choice favored by many for its slightly better odds, despite a standard 5% commission on wins​​.
  • Bank: In the Baccarat rules, this term represents the last hand to be dealt and to take action in a round. The Bank’s decision can be crucial in determining the outcome of the game​​.
  • Bankroll: Your “bankroll” is your budget, the total amount of money you’ve set aside for your Baccarat adventure. It’s a term that reminds players to gamble responsibly, always playing within their financial limits​​.
  • Carte: Borrowed from French, “Carte” is akin to saying “hit me” in blackjack. It’s a request to the dealer for another card, a move that can change the course of the game​​.
  • Chemin de Fer: A European favorite, “Chemin De Fer” is a Baccarat variation where players take turns acting as the banker, passing the shoe around the table. It’s a more interactive version of the game, popular in land-based casinos, especially in France​​.
  • Cheval: This is a unique bet available in certain Baccarat games. “Cheval,” meaning ‘across’ in French, is a bet that involves two hands. It’s won if both hands win, lost if both lose, and in a standoff if there’s a split result​​.
  • Cut/Cut Card: After shuffling the cards, the “cut” is a crucial step. Using a “Cut Card,” a player divides the deck, a ritual that adds to the game’s fairness and unpredictability. The cut ensures that the game remains a test of chance, not memory​​.
  • Discard Tray: In any Baccarat game, the “Discard Tray” is where used or discarded cards are placed. It’s a small but essential part of the table, keeping the game organized and ensuring that used cards are not mistakenly reintroduced into play​​.
  • Dragon Bonus: For those looking for an extra thrill, the “Dragon Bonus” is an exciting side bet. It pays out when the chosen hand – either the player or the banker – wins by a significant margin, offering higher returns for larger victories​​.
  • Deux Tableau: Also known as Baccarat en Banque, this is a version where two player hands are dealt. It’s a term often encountered in European casinos and offers a different style of play compared to traditional Baccarat​​.
  • Down Card: A card dealt face down. In Baccarat, this can add an element of surprise and strategy, as the card’s value remains unknown to other players until revealed​​.
  • Egalite: A French term meaning equality or tie. It’s used when the player’s and banker’s hands have the same total value, leading to a tie bet win​​.
  • Face Cards: These are the Jacks, Queens, and Kings of any suit. In Baccarat, they all have a value of zero, significantly influencing the game’s dynamics​​.
  • Fading: This term is used when a player chooses to bet against someone else, particularly in versions of the game where players can take turns being the banker, such as in Chemin de Fer​​.
  • Flat Bet: Refers to a betting strategy where the player consistently wagers the same amount in each round, regardless of previous outcomes. It’s a method often used by players who prefer a more controlled approach to their betting​​.
  • Lace: This term refers to the action of interlacing the cards in a specific way during the shuffle. It’s part of the process to ensure the randomness and fairness of the game​​.
  • Ladderman: This term refers to a casino employee who oversees the Baccarat table, ensuring the game runs smoothly and resolving any disputes that may arise​​.
  • La Grande and La Petite: Referring to the two best hands in Baccarat. La Grande is a natural nine, the best possible hand, while La Petite signifies a natural eight, the second-best hand in the game​​.
  • Modulo 10: Refers to the rule in Baccarat where only the rightmost digit of a hand’s total is considered. For example, if the total is 15, the Baccarat value is 5​​.
  • Monkey: A baccarat term used for any card with a value of ten in Baccarat, including tens and face cards. A Monkey is essentially a card that brings the hand’s total closer to zero, which is not desirable in Baccarat​​.
  • Muck: This term refers to the eight decks of cards typically used in a game of Baccarat. The term underscores the game’s reliance on multiple card decks to maintain randomness​​.
  • Palette: A long, flat tool used by the dealer to move cards around the table. This tool is symbolic of the traditional aspects of Baccarat, especially in high-stakes and formal settings​​.
  • Panda 8 Bet: A specific side bet in some Baccarat games where the player wins if they have a three-card total of eight. This bet often offers higher payouts due to its lower probability of occurring​​.
  • Point: This term refers to the value of a Baccarat hand. For instance, if a hand consists of a 7 and a 5, its point value is 2 (12 modulo 10)​​.
  • Punto: A term referring to the player in Baccarat. When you bet on ‘Punto’, you are betting on the player’s hand to win the round​​.
  • Rotation: In some versions of Baccarat, especially Chemin de Fer, the shoe or the deal rotates among the players. Rotation ensures that everyone at the table has a chance to be the banker​​.
  • Rule Card: A handy, pocket-sized card provided at some baccarat casinos that outlines the rules and scoring of Baccarat. It’s a useful tool for beginners to refer to during play​​.
  • Sabot: The French term for the shoe in Baccarat, referring to the container holding the multiple decks of cards. Sabot is often used in traditional European versions of the game​​.
  • Shoe: The container holding the multiple decks of cards used in Baccarat. The shoe ensures a consistent and fair shuffle and deal of cards throughout the game​​.
  • Standoff: A situation in Baccarat where both the player and banker hands have the same total, leading to a tie. Bets are usually returned to players in a standoff​​.
  • Starter: A term used for a casino employee who initiates a Baccarat game at an empty table, encouraging players to join and start a new game​​.
  • Upcard: A card dealt face-up. In Baccarat, the upcard can give players crucial information about the current hand, influencing betting decisions​​.
  • Vigorish: Also known as the “vig” or the house commission, this is the percentage taken by the casino on winning bets, especially on the banker’s hand. Understanding vigorish is essential for any player looking to manage their bankroll effectively​​.


  • Greg Wilson

    Greg Wilson is the creator of the Baccarat Academy (, boasting over 30 years as a professional Baccarat player. Inspired by James Bond's suave portrayal of the game's elegance, Greg's unwavering dedication has led him to master Baccarat's mechanics and strategies with analytical precision and creativity. Recognizing the need for accessible learning, Greg founded the Baccarat Academy, aiming to share his expertise and help others excel in the game. His commitment to the Academy is driven by his passion for Baccarat and his engaging teaching style, ensuring an enjoyable learning experience.

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