(Closed) Cash Bar Dilemma!!

posted 6 years ago in Reception
Post # 77
Member
13568 posts
Honey Beekeeper

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FutureDrFiske:  Yes, that is exactly what I’m saying! I’ve been to many lovely weddings that offered a lot less. 

Post # 79
Member
570 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

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FutureDrFiske:  I am very surprised that beer and wine open bar is only a little cheaper than a full open bar for you! At my venue the difference between the full open bar and beer/wine for 4 hours is about $3000, I really wish this were an option for you as that would be the easiest solution. Right now I am planning on beer/wine bar for the full night. Liqour on a cash basis (although I believe my venue allows credit card payments as well). If budget allows closer to the time of the wedding I will switch to a full open bar. However, everyone knows I am on a budget. I don’t feel that many of my friends and family will be judgemental because beer and wine is mostly what everyone I know drinks. In fact.. I can’t think of anyone I am inviting to my wedding that doesn’t drink beer or wine.. except me!! Lol! I can understand the thinking of if you can’t afford alcohol, only have a dry wedding that way guests don’t have to open their wallets at your event. But at the same time, if they would like to purchase a drink, who am I to tell them they aren’t allowed? You know your guest list best! I would go with the full open bar for the cocktail hour and then switch to a cash bar if I were in your situation 🙂 Good luck!

Post # 80
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13568 posts
Honey Beekeeper

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FutureDrFiske:  If they are really there to celebrate with you and support you and not to get drunk off of free booze, then they should also  be grateful for whatever you decide to provide as  host and not feel entitled to more. 

Post # 81
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92 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

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FutureDrFiske:  Just to throw my two cents in here as well…. I think it’s perfectly fine and still makes you a good host to have open bar for cocktail hour, wine with dinner, and then switch to cash.

When other posters say that it’s rude and bad hospitality, and you don’t treat guests this way – I think that’s completely unnecessary. The way I think of it is, if I were having guests over at my house for dinner, I would provide wine and beer, and maybe a couple of mixed drinks – but am I going to let them raid my liquor cabinet? No, I don’t think so. In a perfect world where all guests were respectful and had a drink an hour, maybe we could all afford open bar. But in the real world, where a good portion of guests at almost every wedding think it’s fun to get completely trashed on Grey Goose because they don’t have to pay for it – yeah, no.

For the record, I’m in Massachusetts as well, and I have been to a pretty fair mix of cash bar, open bar, and everything in between. Was I ever upset at any of those options? No. Because at the end of the day it was about celebrating an amazing occasion for people I cared very much about, and as long as I had the option to drink whatever I wanted (whether it came out of my pocket or not), I was perfectly content.

FI’s sister got married a couple of years ago and did open bar for cocktail hour, wine with dinner, champagne toast, and X amount of money towards full bar – when that money ran out, the bar went to cash. Literally no one had a bad thing to say, because everyone was too busy having fun celebrating to care. Personally, if someone is going to give the side eye for not having unlimited all kinds of alcohol all evening, I don’t really want that person at my wedding anyway.

At the end of the day, you figure out what you’re comfortable with, and just do that. You’re always going to have people on both ends of the spectrum whose minds will never change, and it’s not worth worrying if they are going to agree with what you’re doing or not, because there will always be someone who doesn’t agree. You can’t please everyone.

Post # 82
Member
454 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2016

I think a cash bar is okay. Alcohol is very expensive, as are weddings. 

Post # 83
Member
108 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2016 - Wentworth Country Club

I think you should have the wedding YOU want. I agree with the pp that said having what you can free is good. Just make sure your guests know. If i were to do a cash bar i would have cocktail hour be open. Its called COCKTAIL HOUR. your guests are your loved ones not a bunch of strangers on the internet. Do what you can and have a fabouolus day. We have a small budget so i totally get where you’re coming from. I went to a wedding that has a 2 hour open bar recently and no one batted an eye.

Post # 84
Member
3102 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

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weddingmaven:  Huh? Going to a wedding takes time, money and effort. I assure you that many people aren’t “grateful” for whatever you deign to give them.

The attitudes here astound me. 

Post # 86
Member
44 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: December 1969

Cash bar is fine as long as you specify “cash bar at reception” on the invite. Please please let your guests know ahead of time; there is NOTHING worse than feeling duped at the wedding when you expected open bar.

 

Just don’t expect to get full amount in your envelopes.

  • This reply was modified 5 years, 9 months ago by Yochonlove83.
Post # 87
Member
13568 posts
Honey Beekeeper

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doberman:  Seriously?  It’s a two way street. Considerate hosts are  grateful for the efforts and attendance of their guests, but  guests should certainly be gracious and appreciative of the efforts being made to feed and entertain them.  That is just common sense and good manners. 

Post # 88
Member
44 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: December 1969

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weddingmaven:  that is a very entitled way of looking at it. Guests are just that- GUESTS- and they are doing YOU a favour by attending your wedding. The host should treat their attendees like gold and cater to them for being present and bringing a gift. If it were purely “a celebration of family and fiends lovingly coming together to celebrate your wedding and your happiness” then why not specify “no gifts/presents please”?? Then I would understand that yes the guests should be happy to just be there. But cmon. As a guest you know you are paying for your plate and then some to give the bride and groom some profit. If you can’t afford the bar then you have to tell people that ahead of time and understand that not everyone will be thrilled.

 

 

  • This reply was modified 5 years, 9 months ago by Yochonlove83.
Post # 89
Member
596 posts
Busy bee

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FutureDrFiske:  I think most of the Bees were saying to either have a full open bar (or whatever alcohol you provide at no cost to your guests) or a cash bar. I think the partial cash bar causes a lot of problems, namely having long lines and guests attempting to get multiple drinks before it switches to a cash bar. I personally would not be impressed that you offered to pay for drinks during part of the reception.

Where I live, open bars are the norm. I’ve been to both big budget and small budget weddings and all find a way to have an open bar. Now, I’m not saying YOU have to, but as a guest, I appreciate it a lot more if I don’t have to pay for my drinks.

I’m very surprised at the cost of the open bar. I live in an expensive area and one of my friends got married in October and for 200 people, her open bar wasn’t close to $7,000.

I personally would lessen the budget on things like favors (not necessary), photo booth (I don’t know if you’re having one but I find them not necessary) flowers, etc in order to provide an open bar for my guests.

Post # 90
Member
44 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: December 1969

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FutureDrFiske:  very tacky to rely on word of mouth to let people know it is a cash bar. You have to specify that on your invite. 

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