Prepare yourself for those megalomaniac confrontations by learning James Bond's favourite casino game "Chemin De Fer", a version of Baccarat...

How To Play Chemin De Fer (Baccarat)
5th December 2002

Chemin De Fer is French for "railroad" (probably named after the way the shoe travels around the table) and is a popular version of Baccarat in France. The game is played entirely in French, and is James Bond's favourite way to pass the time in a casino. From Dr. No to GoldenEye, Bond always seems to have his luck with the cards.

How To Play

Baccarat is played from a six-deck or an eight-deck shoe ("Sabot").

The casino ("House") has no involvement in the game, other than to take 5% commission on the Bank's winning hands. Chemin De Fer is a one-on-one game where the players wager amongst themselves. Each player can be a Banker in turn.

The card dealer gives two cards each; first to the Player ("Punto") and then the Banker ("Banco").

A third card may be dealt to either or both the Player and the Bank if they wish.

All face cards (Kings, Queens, Jacks) and 10s have no value. Cards less than 10 are counted at face value, Aces are worth 1. Suits do not have any significance.

Only single digit values are valid. Any total that reaches a double digit drops the left digit, so 15 is counted as 5 and 25 is also counted as 5 etc.

The winner is the hand closest to 9.


Above: The most famous casino in Monte Carlo.
  Baccarat Variations

Chemin De Fer is a variation on Baccarat with a few subtle differences. In this version, it is not possible to bet on the Player or the Banker - you must be one or the other.

Whereas Baccarat has strict rules on when a player can take an optional third card , Chemin De Fer is flexible and the Player and Banker can decide on whether to take one regardless of the value of their current hand.

Chemin De Fer is played predominantly in Europe, but not in the UK of USA.