Post # 1
So, I finally found an awesome venue completely in our price range and booked it today!!! We originally had a pretty small budget to begin with but then it almost all got foiled because we couldn’t find somewhere cheap enough because I had a crisis tax refund situation (ughhhhh state wanted to just sit on my money for another 6 months…)
The only thing about my venue is that they don’t offer an open bar package. It’s a per drink price ($3.50 per domestic beer, $4.25 per premium, $5.50 per glass of wine) …. and I have no idea what to do about the alcohol situation.
I was thinking 2-3 drink tickets might be a good option? We are renting the venue from 5-9p and serving food.
Post # 3
I added a poll everyone, thanks!
Keep in mind, we really dont have any other costs to cut. We’re paying the minimum food cost to get the room already, and have no other wedding expenses. So cutting other costs to pay the entire tab aren’t an option.
Post # 4
Is there a way you can buy a certain number of bottles of wine and beer and have them set out (chilled) for people to help themselves to? And then when it’s gone… it’s gone.
Is the venue providing non-alcoholic beverages (water, soda, coffee. etc.)?
Post # 5
I posted in your other topic too. It’s not tacky, put up a cute sign, something along the lines of .. the first two are on us. I’m sure you can google something more creative. If you have the money for it it’s great, but if you don’t you don’t… it’s not like your not feeding people.
Post # 6
I would just put some money on the bar tab and when it runs out everyone buys their own. This happened at most functions I’ve attended lately. As long as I get 2-3 drinks I’m more than happy to buy any more myself 🙂
Post # 7
Putting drinks out would be tough, but I was thinking we could pre-pay for what equated to 3 drinks per person….. but that’s basically the same as drink tickets but at least with the tickets people know?
And no, the venue doesn’t provide non-alcoholic drinks. We have to pay for those also.
Post # 8
I am a Canadian where Cash Bars are the norm…
BUT I hear you on how quickly the Bill can add up for alcohol.
In our case, we had a Back Home Reception Party that ran 5 Hours… and there was no sit-down meal, just a casual Hors d’ouevres assortment. And Cake with Sparkling served (we ordered enough bottles to cover 2 glasses per person… OR whomever wanted to drink it until it was GONE)
In Ontario, we only have consumption Bars (so no flat rate options are available)
We had the Bar run a tab for all Pop & Juice orders (payable by us). There was also complimentary Tea & Coffee available all night long (via our Caterers)
We gave everyone a Cheers! – First Drink on Us Ticket (and explained what we had available for FREE… so they used their ticket wisely… such as for Beer & Hardstuff). These Complimentary Bevs went on our Bar Tab as well.
The whole thing, seemed to go over well with everyone… but this is Canada, where people appreciate any FREE Booze they get, because we all know what a HUGE expense this can be for a Host ($ 8 all in … Taxes & Tip is the norm here for just a Beer)
Post # 9
It just seems like people are more interested in getting drunk for free than celebrating with a new couple. Hm.
Post # 10
I don’t think any form of cash bar is ideal, but you gotta work with what you have. I second the idea of putting a little sign up saying “The first two are on us!” As a guest, I would not be insulted- that is still two complimentary drinks. I would hope most of your guests would understand that money is limited, and the celebration is the most important thing 🙂
Post # 11
@2littleslauren: those two things aren’t mutually exclusive….sheesh!
Post # 12
My only thought with drink tickets vs. limited bar tab is that Uncle Bob is probably capable of throwing back several drinks within the first hour, while I might only have one glass of wine. I think tickets help because then I will get two drinks whenever I choose to have them, and won’t have to worry that all the alcohol will be gone before I get to the bar. I think tickets are fine (and not tacky), and the other suggestions about a cute sign on the bar is great. And congrats on the venue!
Post # 13
@2littleslauren: most bees think cash bars or drink tickets are vile, so I fully expect that’s how your poll will turn out. My opinion is, if your guests have non alcoholic beverages covered, plus 2 alcoholic pp then that’s good. Just do not make them pay for soda or water–that’s horribly tacky IMO. As to whether it’s a good idea for your wedding, look to your own social circle. Have your friends/relatives had similar bars? If so and it’s expected, it’s fine.
Post # 14
Most people invited are friends from college, long time friends who are non judge mental and family. I wouldn’t have them pay for soda and juice, we will do that.
Post # 15
I would put money aside for the bar tab, and then when that cap is hit, turn the bar into a cash bar. As much as I hate the idea of cash bars at weddings, I think drink tickets takes away from the formality and makes the event reminiscent of those events in college in which you were bribed to attend with two drink tickets…
Post # 16
What’s your budget? Could you close the bar during dinner so we’re only talking about 3 drinking hours? That may be a way to cut costs.