Baccarat is a simple yet complex game. Talking about squeeze techniques, the concept of "roads" (big road, small road, big-eyed, cockroach, etc.), advanced baccarat tournament strategy, or listening to veterans talk about the latest winning tricks, it all seems so intricate.
In another sense, baccarat is a simple game, the banker wins or the idler wins. It's not very different from flipping a coin and guessing heads and tails, but in this "coin toss" game, the odds are not the same for both sides. Every baccarat player knows that the odds are 1/1 to bet on the player, but if the banker wins, you can only win $19 for every $20 bet, in other words, the odds are 1/1, minus 5 % commission.
no one likes commissions
This annoying 5% rake is a hassle for players, casinos and dealers for three reasons:
The dealer made a mistake. Dealers are prone to errors when calculating winnings, and both players and casino supervisors need to be careful.
Slow down the game. Calculating commissions and paying winnings often involves small stakes and can be time-consuming, especially for inexperienced dealers. Players want to play more hands instead of waiting for the dealer to fiddle with many different colored chips.
When you win, you also "lose". Every time the player bets on the banker to win, he has a negative feeling of losing 5% of his winnings, even though he just won!
The Birth of No-Commission Baccarat
Wouldn't it be great if you could pay no commissions? That's exactly what Mr Rakesh Wadhwa had in mind back in 1987, when he was running a casino in Sri Lanka. A game called "commission-free baccarat" was born. Wadhwa invented this version to forgo all commissions on banker wins! Obviously this gives players a huge advantage. In order to maintain balance, there is a rule in the new game that if the banker wins and the banker is a six, the odds of the bet are only 1/2, which means that the win is only half of the bet.
As a result, the casino takes 50% of the rake on about 10% of the banker wins, rather than 5% on all banker wins.
This 50% banker-win (banker six) payout occurs every 20 hands. The rest of the time, if you bet on the banker, the odds are 1/1, and there is no commission like betting on the player. If you're only ready to take a shot and run away and avoid hitting the banker six, you'll win more than you would at a traditional baccarat table because you don't pay any commission when you bet on the banker's win.
Although no-commission baccarat has a slightly higher house win rate than traditional baccarat, the difference takes days or even weeks of play to manifest, and when the odds are significant. For short- and medium-term players, if they only play baccarat for a day or two, the win rate is almost the same. However, no-commission baccarat has big advantages over traditional baccarat that quickly become apparent: more hands per hour, fewer mistakes, no need to deal with short stacks, and most importantly, more hands per hour Banker wins 100% on bets.
No-commission baccarat spreads around the world
Wadhwa first introduced his commission-free baccarat to Palm Beach Casino in Sri Lanka in 1987. The game is popular with Indian players who visit casinos in Sri Lanka and Nepal at the same time. The group of Indian players in Nepal insisted on this version, and they got it. No-commission baccarat grew rapidly in both countries until traditional baccarat disappeared.
Coincidentally, David Packer, a casino consultant working at Casino Iguazu in Argentina, came to Nepal in 1995 to do some work for Berjaya, a Malaysian gaming and lottery company. He needed to visit a casino in Nepal, where commission-free baccarat had already made its home. Berjaya is also a partner of Casino Iguazu, and this version of the game makes its way to Argentina. It soon spread to the Conrad Casino (opened in 1997) in Punta del Este, Uruguay, through Brazilian players who played in both Argentina and Uruguay, and from Sri Lanka to Nepal a decade ago through Indian players Same.
In 1998, commission-free baccarat returned to the Pacific. David Hilton, then vice president of operations at Conrad Jupiters Casino on the Gold Coast, Australia (now The Star City, Gold Coast), learned of this version from Punta del Este, and Jupiter then applied to government regulators to introduce the game. In the same year, Jupiter's casino manager Andrew McDonald moved to Melbourne's Crown Casino, taking over table games development. He then introduced no-commission baccarat to Crown, and the game eventually spread to most Australian casinos.
In 2000, representatives from Casino Genting Highlands (now Genting Malaysia) visited Crown Casino Melbourne and brought several gaming concepts back to Malaysia, including no-commission baccarat. After entering Genting Highlands, it spread to Genting's subsidiary Star Cruises, a Hong Kong-based casino cruise line. It didn't take long for it to cross the Pearl River Delta to Macau and quickly to the rest of Asia. Sri Lanka and Macau are only 4,000 kilometers away, but after a long journey of 32,000 kilometers through Argentina, Uruguay, Australia, Malaysia and Hong Kong!
Commission-free baccarat is widely available in Macau. Next time you play baccarat, try the commission-free version!