(Closed) Cash bar?

posted 7 years ago in Reception
Post # 32
Member
2203 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

@MsAmandaAnn:  +1

 

 

 

Making money off your guests? Um no. Don’t do that, please. And trust me, people will find out. $3 for mixed drinks? Is it really worth it to charge people for such a little amount?

 

Post # 33
Member
7899 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

@classyashley:  I agree. I don’t think guests should have an option at a hosted event to upgrade their experience.

You should have an open bar. You can always provide limited liquor intended to cover cocktail hour only and then have a lot of beer and wine if you want to keep costs down.

Post # 34
Member
2085 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

Im having a cash bar.  I thik in general there is absolutely nothing wrong with a cash bar. My venue doesnt allow us to bring in our own liquor or elsewe would, and they charge too much to makeitaffordable to have open bar.  We will however, put money toward the bar to lower the cost of everyones drinks.  

Im surprised by how many people thik its wrong to have cash bar. Open bar is a luxury.   If u cant afford the 2000-4000 extra for open bar, doesnt mean youshouldnt have that many guests or that venue.  I am “hosting what i can afford” and choosing notto have an open bar.  Ive paid for drinksat most weddings ive been too and it was never a big deal.   

But that being said if youre allowed to buy the liquor for your venue and plan to, then i would just leave itas an open bar.   Youll recoup some $ at ur showers and in wedding gifts.  

Post # 35
Member
750 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2001

You are so lucky that you are in this situation actually. I think most brides would love to be able to provide their know alcohol because the venue liquor can be so expensive. I would definitely do an open bar. If your guests found out all the money was going back to you, they might be offended. Unless, you said it was going towards something (your down payment or honeymoon maybe). If you do it, buy it in bulk at Sams Club/Costco because you can return unopened bottles. 

But my advice overall would be to not do it. 

Post # 36
Member
4474 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

Open bar’s insanely expensive, so if it’s out of your budget I think free wine for guests and cash bar for hard liquor’s a good compromise. 

Post # 37
Member
750 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2001

Although, as a guest, I wouldn’t really care if a drink was a $1 honestly. At that rate, I would buy a bunch of drinks and wouldn’t even think it was tacky. I can respect a bargain! 

Post # 38
Member
163 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

@BrideToBee2014:  How much money do you expect to spend on the bar, and how much do you expect to make? It sounds like you will be making an overall profit from your guests which I really don’t think is ok.

 

Why not skip favours or something else so your guests dont have to pay for drinks? If I found out that I was being charged directly by my friends or family I would be pissed. 

Post # 39
Member
447 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I don’t mind the idea of a cash bar–obviously, I prefer an open bar though. However, if I was a guest and found out that the money I was paying for drinks was going back to you, I would be annoyed. And trust me, it will get back to your guests.

Post # 40
Member
323 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

Most weddings I have been to are a “toonie” bar (which is $2.00 in Canada). I never have an issue paying for drinks, weddings cost a lot of money and I don’t expect people to provide me with free alochol after the food, dj, and all around fun time. We will most likely have an open bar for a couple hours, then turn it to a cash bar after the dinner is finished and dancing starts.

Many people have encouraged my fiance and I to have a cash bar, one to keep from providing free booze for those who wander in (we will be having it at a lake that has only seen one other wedding), and two to help keep down waste. I am the first to admit I am cheap. I would prefer not to see hundreds of dollars worth the booze poured out because a drunk person decided they only wanted to finish half a drink before getting a new one.

Post # 42
Member
41 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Just do beer, wine and a signature drink. A couple of kegs couldn’t be too bad. I think it’s better to have cheaper choices than a full bar that your guests will have to pay for.

 

Post # 43
Member
1447 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Aw, man.  Not another one of these threads.

Don’t do a cash bar in any form.  If you want to provide hard liquor, do it during the cocktail hour only and then wine/beer for the reception.

Be a gracious hostess and provide what you can.  I went to a wedding once that, while fabulous, had a cash bar.  None of her guests found out about the cash bar until after arriving, and the venue was over a half hour away from the nearest ATM.  Even though I don’t drink much, and it was a fun wedding, *that* is the detail that sticks out in my mind.

Post # 44
Member
438 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Can you do a cash bar for liquor only? Or do a cocktail hour open bar? Even wine on the tables for dinner? I think there are a couple different alternatives to having a full open bar and avoiding full cash bar

Post # 45
Member
7899 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort

@Anise:  “None of her guests found out about the cash bar until after arriving, and the venue was over a half hour away from the nearest ATM.”

This is a really important point, OP. As I said above, I think it’s best not to do this cash bar at all, but you should also consider that the setup you would have since the money goes to you and not the venue would probably truly be a cash bar. Your guests aren’t likely to have actual cash on hand.

Post # 46
Member
2598 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

@BrideToBee2014:  Yes, they really are that bad. 

You are the hosts.  You don’t have to provide alchohol but if you do choose to provide it, then as the hosts you need to pay for it.

It is absolutely no different than inviting someone to your home for dinner and then charging them for a drink.  You never asks guests to take out their wallets at an event you invited them to attend.

My husband was also interested in the cash bar idea until I asked him how many of his friends weddings he had attended and been asked to pay for his own drinks.  He quickly agreed we would host the open bar. 

I know you’ll hear “its cultural/regional” and frankly, that’s nonsense.  While cash bars may be more common in certain areas or circles of people – that doesn’t make them polite.  Cash bars are totally contrary to the ideals of hospitality. 

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