Baccarat Tournaments

An overview of baccarat tournaments, some baccarat tournament strategy and a look at famous baccarat tournaments.

Baccarat Tournaments

  • Baccarat tournaments are different from normal baccarat games because in baccarat tournaments the players compete against each other. As in normal games they bet against the house but it is their relative winning or losing that is important.
  • Baccarat tournaments are usually of the buy-in type. Players pay an entry fee in order to participate for a prize that is the total pool money less the tournament costs.
  • All players start the tournament with the same number of chips.
  • The tournament consists of several rounds. Each round consists of a specified number of deals. There are several tables in the first round. The winners from the first round go to the next in which there are fewer tables. In the final round there is only one table and the winner of this round is the winner of the tournament.
  • At each table the player with the most chips at the end of the round is the winner. It is important to note that the player need not increase his chip count in order to win. If all players lose chips then the player who loses the least wins the round.

Baccarat Tournament Strategy

There are three common strategies prevalent on the baccarat tournament circuit.

  • One strategy involves placing low wagers to start with and conserving the given bankroll. Towards the end the players assess how far ahead the leader is. They can then start betting more aggressively with their conserved bankroll. The rationale for this strategy is that if there is a target available it is easier to decide on the betting level.
  • Another strategy is based on the assumption that it is impossible to catch up. Advocates of this strategy bet aggressively early on and try to establish a lead. Then they cool down and watch carefully if any competitor is catching up. If one is doing so then they engage in another bout of aggressive betting. The flip side is that they may not have sufficient chips for the second round of aggressive betting.
  • The third strategy is based on winning and losing streaks. If the player encounters a winning streak he raises the wagers and if he is in a losing streak he lowers the level of betting.

Famous Baccarat Tournaments

There are some baccarat tournaments that are popular for their prize money or glamour.

  • Macao Baccarat tournament: This tournament takes place in March in Macao in China. The participants are mostly aristocrats from the Pacific countries. The prize money for this tournament is $650,000.
  • Tornoi de Chemin de fer: This is the largest baccarat tournament in the world. It is held in February in Monte Carlo. The participants are glamorous high rollers who spend as much time on their yachts as on the tables. The prize is a million euros.
  • Bally's Casino New Orleans Mini Baccarat Tournament: This is a monthly tournament played in New Orleans. The prize is only a hundred thousand dollars but the entry is free.