Post # 1
ok… so here in the south (delta) open bar is considered expected and i came across a board the other day (from a while ago i believe) that said that open bar is considered tacky in their area?? which is so funny cause here cash bars here are considered a huge faux pas. and god knows, if somebody remembers something from your wedding if you have a cash bar that’s the only thing they will remember. so… i look forward to see what different parts of the US think. 🙂
Post # 8
I don’t think I’ve ever been to a wedding with a cash bar, but SO and I aren’t really drinkers (plus SO has medication that shouldn’t be mixed with alcohol anyway) so we’re actually talking a dry wedding. I’m kinda torn cause I wanted at least a champagne toast, but I dunno we’re still early in our planning anyway… gotta decide a venue before we talk alcohol lol
Post # 9
Cash bar is pretty common among my church. Either that or only providing enough booze for 2 drinks per person.
I think about it like this…this is the biggest party I will be hosting in my entire life. When I have people over for dinner, I provide appetizers, dinner, dessert and drinks (alcoholic and non). My guests don’t pay for anything unless they ask “What can I bring?” and then I make a suggestion of something small like a bottle of wine or some chips and salsa.
When I invite people to my wedding, people aren’t going to ask what to bring because what’s expected of them is to bring a gift. Therefore, my guests shouldn’t have to pay for anything at my reception. Drinks, Apps, dinner, dessert, drinks.
With that said, I, being the hostess (kind of) get to choose what’s on the menu, what the drinks are AND how much gets served. Sooooo when it runs out, it runs out. For that reason I think it’s perfectly acceptable to set a limit on your bar tab and make it cash when you run out.
Post # 10
I think it totally depends on the area. I grew up in a hillbilly town in the woods, and basically a cash bar is the norm there and nobody thinks anything of it. If you have an open bar, folks are like, WHOOOOOA they must have money LOL. But around where I live now, it’s the polar opposite. Folks are horrified with a cash bar and expect an open bar. IMO, you do what you can afford/want and it shouldn’t be anyone’s concern.
Post # 11
- Wedding: February 2018 - Toronto, Ontario
in toronto ( Canada) its all about open bar, you must cater to the guests
Post # 12
I don’t think either is tacky or offensive. Most weddings that I’ve been to have either a full open bar or free wine/beer and cash cocktails.
Post # 13
i live in nj, and every single wedding ive ever been to has been open bar. my bf’s sister was considering doing a cash bar bc she didnt want to spend the money on an open one, and i didnt know what to say to her. she ended up having wine and beer only…….and no one wanted wine or beer. it was terrible.
just bite the bullet and do open bar. you only get married once or twice. do it big. if i went to a wedding with a cash bar, id rethink my gift (subtracting what i spent on drinks :P)
Post # 14
welp we ended up (in june) having an open bar and it only cost 1800. we had pinot noir, chard, pinot grigio, sav blanc, cab sav (my parents and their friends are big winos), 2 kegs of purple haze and sierra nevada. we had 75% of both kegs left and 0 wine left so we threw a pool party the next weekend at a friends house and let everyone drink for free again. cause were awesome.
ps- i just wrote on this to give people an idea on how to save money when it comes to alcohol cause i know and have seen people seriously eff up and get screwed on their bar ticket. the wine all came from costco and the kegs came from a local distributor and we had 150 people in the reception. we eventually ran out of pinot grigio during the first 45 minutes and i began to freak but no one else cared and they just drank something else!
Post # 15
I have never been to a wedding with a cash bar and it would definitely be frowned upon here.
Where I got married, alcohol is very expensive too. Easily US$15 for a simple cocktail but you just have to budget it in by either inviting less guests or limiting the kind of alcohol available (ie. red and white housewine only).
Post # 16
We had a cash bar (they could cash OR use their credit cards and open a tab) at my wedding. We paid for the chapagne toast though. Noone complained and everyone drank. Plus our prices were super cheap. Honestly I didn’t care if it was tacky or not. My family and friends had fun no matter what.
Edit: We also didn’t want to have a dry wedding just because we couldn’t afford an extra $50 a head… I know my family and friends appreciated the fact that alcohol was availible to them.
Post # 17
we are splitting the night (yes I’ll probably take heat for this I know)
we are having cocktail hour from 5-6 with open bar then closing the bar from 6-6:60 for introductions, first dances etc. (there will be wine on the table at that time though)
Dinner is from 6:30-7:30 and during that time, its a cash bar. open bar from 7:30-9:30 then the last 1/2 hour (9:30-10) is cash bar.
soda and water is free all night. there will be signs at the bar so noone will be suprised that the bar switches from open to cash, we’re hosting what we can afford
Post # 18
- Wedding: March 2012 - Pelican Grand Beach Resort
I live in Florida and have been to weddings in Michigan, Maryland, Texas, Georgia, and many in Florida. I have never, ever been to a wedding that had a bar that wasn’t an open bar. I went to one wedding where the reception was at a church and there was no bar at all, but I’ve never been to a cash bar wedding. I grew up in a standard middle class household and my circle is all middle class and lower middle class. I believe you host what you can afford, and what you cannot afford is simply not present. If you can’t afford alcohol, you have a dry wedding. If you can only afford beer and wine, then you only have beer and wine.
I was lucky that my mother paid for our reception. The open bar part was $55/person.
Post # 19
OP, I wonder if you might have misread. I can’t imagine anyone anywhere considering an open bar tacky. Not at all, for any reason. Someone else mentioned possibly a religious objection, but I still don’t see how that could be considered “tacky”. Someone might think it was sinful or insensitive, but not tacky. Can you link to the post you’re referring to?
Post # 20
I think the bar type really depends on region like so many other things wedding related. For example, I know a heated topic on the bee at times is a Buck & Doe, which is basically an event the Bride and Groom put on to help raise money towards the wedding or honeymoon. Buck & Doe’s seem so strange to many people, but in my region of Ontario, people look forward to them and wonder why someone wouldn’t have it. I’m not having one, but I like going to them and it’s a fun night out with family and friends.
Within my circle of friends and family, I have been to weddings that have been open bar, partial host bar and then cash bar. The atmosphere of the wedding definetly changes when it is an open bar, but no one ever bashes the Bride and Groom for not footing the bill. Were having a lunch reception, so a full open bar is not necessary as no one is going to pound back 7+ drinks during the course of a 3 hour lunch. Were offering wine and mimosa’s, anything else our guest wants and their on their own. I feel what we are offering is sufficient as no one I know would drink much, and may not even drink the wine, not big drinkers in our circle.
I would never judge someone for not offering a full bar. I’m there to celebrate with the Bride and Groom and support them. If they cannot afford a bar or feel the money would be better spent on something else, I wouldn’t think twice about it. If someone judges me for not having an open bar, I wouldn’t want them at my wedding.