Is There Value in Playing Baccarat Side Bets?

Several decades ago, baccarat was reserved exclusively for the elite but, thankfully, this is no longer the case. The game is now more accessible than ever as casual players can enjoy it at hundreds of live dealer casinos right from the comfort of their surroundings.

Live dealer baccarat quickly gained traction among online gambling aficionados thanks to its flexible betting limits, decent winning odds, and uncomplicated rules. The only decision baccarat players face in each round is whether to bet on Banker, Player, or Tie.

With little to no strategy involved, the game tends to become repetitive and dull over time. This is where side bets come to players’ rescue, adding more diversity to the equation.

Baccarat boasts a proliferation of extra betting options that undoubtedly add more flair to the game but the more important question is do they offer any value to players. Stick with us as we unravel the answer.

Baccarat Side Bets at a Glance

Baccarat Side BetsThis article is written on the premise readers already have a rudimentary understanding of the basic rules and card values in baccarat.

Those unfamiliar with the game’s objective can read more about it in our comprehensive guide to live dealer baccarat.

With that clarification out of the way, here are the main characteristics of side bets in baccarat.

Baccarat Side Bets Characteristics


Side bets are optional wagers players can make in addition to their main bets.


You can only make side bets before any cards have been dealt to the Player and Banker hands.


Some side bets can be posted separately and do not require a main bet, while others can only be made in conjunction with the main bet.


Side bets offer significantly higher payouts but this comes at the expense of longer odds, i.e. they have a lower win frequency.

Common Side Bets You Can Find in Baccarat

Baccarat facilitates an extraordinary diversity of additional betting options, so much so that available side wagers differ vastly depending on what variation you play and where you play it. What follows is a smorgasbord of side wagers you can find in the game of baccarat, including at online casinos.

Side Bets on Pairs
All Black/All Red
Big and Small
Royal Match
Matching Dragon
Lucky Bonus
Lucky 8 and Unlucky 8
Egalite Bets
Dragon Bonus

Other Intriguing Side Bets in Baccarat

1Additional Options

Apart from the above-listed side wagers, baccarat offers several additional options to side bettors who seek greater thrills and bigger payouts. Some are specific to concrete variations of the game and may be unavailable to players from certain locations.

2Panda 8

Panda 8 side bets pay at odds of 25 to 1 whenever the side you back, Player or Banker, wins with a three-card total that adds up to eight.

3Three-Card 6

Three-Card 6 is similar to Panda 8 to a certain extent. It wins at odds of 8 to 1 if either the Banker or the Player receives a three-card total of six. The payout increases to a whopping 100 to 1 if both sides get three-card totals of six when the round finishes.

4Dragon 7

Dragon 7 side bets can earn you a 40-to-1 payout when the Banker side wins the round with a three-card total of seven points.

5Double 8

Double 8 side bets are pretty much self-explanatory and partially resemble egalite wagers on the 8/8 tie as they win whenever the Player and the Banker side both have totals of 8 at the end of a round. However, the standard payout is significantly lower at 15 to 1.

Monstrous House Edges in Baccarat Side Bets

Baccarat is a game that moves at a relatively leisurely pace, requiring little to no decision-making on behalf of players. Pretty much the only decision you face here is whether to bet on Player, Banker, or Tie. The gameplay tends to get a bit stale after a while as a result and this is where side betting options come in handy.

House Edges in the Main Game
House Edges of Common Side Bets
Go for Side Bets with Lower Negative Expectation

Are Baccarat Side Wagers Beatable?

The short answer to this question is yes, some of them are in theory. To elaborate further, savvy players can only beat baccarat side wagers provided that certain conditions are met. Gambling experts suggest that some side bets are susceptible to card counting and frequently cite the Dragon Bonus wager as a prime example.

Effect of Card Removal in Baccarat
Setbacks Preventing Players from Exploiting Baccarat Side Bets

Closing Points

Closing PointsTo wrap things up, entertainment value is pretty much the only kind of value baccarat players can find in side bets. While some are theoretically susceptible to advantage play, the playing conditions at most casinos rarely allow players to beat them in practice. In short, you should either altogether refrain from side betting or occasionally opt for the side wagers that yield the lowest house edge.