(Closed) Cash bar thoughts – regional?

posted 9 years ago in Food
Post # 32
Member
399 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I’m from Kentucky and granted I live in the city but I’ve been to one open bar wedding out of probably hundreds. Open bars aren’t expected in my crowd and most scoff at it as a waste of money. Most weddings around here are some beer and wine during dinner premium drinks or after dinner drinks are cash. No one really thinks anything of it and idk of a person who got upset over it.

 

 

It’s definitely a regional thing.

Post # 35
Member
1375 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

I’d rather have a cash bar than a dry wedding, and I’d rather have a couple of drink tickets than a cash bar.

I understand cash bars and as long as the rest of the wedding is in line with it, I don’t judge. But if you’ve got a $3000 dress, rented limos and trolleys, tons of decor, fancy centerpieces, etc – and you do  a cash bar? I think that’s in pretty poor taste as a host.

I personally chose to just offer a limited open bar (2 kinds of beer, 4 kinds of wine, and a signature drink). We would rather have unlimited amounts of fewer choices than have drink tickets or have to cut the bar off at a certain time/amount.

Post # 36
Member
1578 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@Puppy Love:  It’s definitely regional!  I’m your next door state neighbor (Wisconsin), and while I have been to some open bars, cash bars are definitely more prevalent.

Though, according to this article, Wisconsin has the highest percentage of binge drinkers of any state…so maybe most people go cash bar so they don’t go totally broke!  😛

Post # 37
Member
8067 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

I’m in the midwest.

I’ve been to a mix.  Quite a few when I was younger (20-23) had some free alcohol of some sort (beer/kegs) and then cash for liquor. 

In the recent years…I think almost every one I’ve been to has had an open bar (either unlimited beer and wine, or unlimited everything).  Maybe it’s because I’m a little older now (28-29), so my peers can afford to host more or want to.

I haven’t actually been to one with a cash bar in awhile (5-6 years?)

I’ve only been to one dry wedding…and I did not enjoy the reception.

I generally expect to have alcohol at a wedding, and I would expect for it to be free (whether it’s only beer and wine, or a full bar)

Post # 39
Member
431 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2012

I live in Washington state in the greater Seattle area, and I’ve only once been to an entirely dry wedding (which was an extremely traditional, conservative Catholic ceremony and reception).

Everyone else here offers totally open bars, even if it’s just unliminted beer and wine.

I’ve definitely noticed that this service depends on the region and whether or not cash bars are deemed acceptable, but I can firmly say that in this area, guests will feel incredibly offended if asked to pony up their own cash for an after dinner cocktail or two.

Post # 40
Member
672 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I grew up in rural Minnesota as well, and that is also where our reception will be.  Cash bars are extremely common in my corner of the state.  Usually it is 1-2 free kegs of beer and then cash after that.  And liquor is free for maybe cocktail hour, after that, you need to pay.

I’ll be doing an open bar.  The main reason, we can’t do a cash bar because the reception is at a family park, and we legally can’t sell alcohol!  We don’t want to bring in an entire bar and have someone serving drinks (no way in hell would I just leave bottles for people to mix themselves!), so we are having beer, wine & 2-3 signature drinks available.  But I’m pretty excited, becaue my Future Father-In-Law is an amazing home brewmaster and is bringing a lot of amazing beers for everyone!  Most places wouldn’t allow us to bring our own beer like that, so we are winning!

Post # 42
Member
672 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@Puppy Love:  Southwest corner too!  I don’t live there anymore, but I’m home a lot for family events and weddings, including my own this summer!  Cash bars are def. the norm in SW Minnesota, if you have one, no one will think anything of it.  I mean, open bars are always better, but never expected down there.  

Post # 43
Member
1298 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

Definitely regional/cultural. I’m originally from the east coast of Canada and I’ve never been to a wedding with an open bar (nor do I know anyone from home who has had an open bar at their wedding). Maybe it happens, but I’ve never heard of it. I’ve been to one or two weddings where we each got two drink tickets and then anything after that was cash bar, and I think one with one bottle of wine per table but everything else was cash.

I haven’t been to a wedding where I live now, but I think it depends a lot on your background. I know a few couples who have had cash bar and BYOB (it was an at home wedding), but most people I know of and bees from my area have had open bars.

We’re having a family-only, very small destination wedding with the dinner at a restaurant. We’re having everyone to our place for champagne and cake, and paying for all drinks consumed at the dinner, but it’s certainly not going to be over the top drinking with our families. If we were having a large wedding in my partner’s hometown (where I live now), we’d probably do a partial open bar and then switch to cash.

Post # 45
Member
9919 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I’m from Massachusetts and live in DC now, and I have never, ever been to a wedding with a cash bar.

Post # 46
Member
625 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Canada (calgary), I would say acceptable. I’ve been to 2 weddings in the last year that had them and no one complained. Both had limited drink tickets though (2 per person).

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