Thursday, March 29, 2007

Not Trying to be Cheap

Weddings are for celebrating love--but the open bar at the reception is an oft-cited perk for guests.

My fiance and I are in great accord about many things, but the open/cash bar decision took quite a lot of discussion. It's funny, because neither of us are actually drinkers.

I am with Miss Manners--one does not require guests to pay for anything. If you don't want to pay for booze, don't serve it.

Fiance has a different view. He doesn't want to bankroll people's benders, and if there's a open bar, people will drink a TON. But he also swears that his family will riot if booze isn't available. Probably so would my sorority sisters.

So we have decided to go with a cash bar (except for the champagne toast, which is included in our wedding package). I am more interested in making him feel comfortable than in obeying strict rules of etiquette, but I feel awfully defensive about it--like I should have to explain that we're not being cheap, I swear!


Jenn @ Frugal Upstate said...

Just out of curiosity, is it possible to do a partial? At my wedding, we were able to do an open bar for just beer, wine and soda for 2 hours. Any mixed drinks were cash, and anything after the intial 2 hours were cash.

That was a good compromise for us.

Ellen said...

That sounds like a pretty good idea. We're definitely doing free pop and nonalcoholic things, and Fiance floated the idea of having a couple of 'drink tokens' by people's plates, so their first two drinks were free.

It's all about compromises, isn't it? Thanks for the input!

James said...

I'm with you there, don't charge your guests for anything. Thats tacky.

Why not just get some super cheap alcohol from wal-mart or costco or something and the have the venue charge you a serving fee, thats much cheeper than buying their alcohol,



canadian sadie said...

Just please be sure to mention 'cash bar available' somewhere on the reception invitations?

My cousin(!!) did not mention this on the invitations to her "cocktail reception" (!!), and as a result, all the guests arrived at the very remote country venue expecting cocktails and having no cash. She paid a lot for a DJ who basically didn't have anything to do after 9:30 pm.

Ellen said...

Wish I could, Sadie, but the invites are long gone. I can try and spread the word, though--that's a good idea.

We're in the middle of a city, though, so people aren't going to be trapped without access to booze (or they can always drink pop for free *g*).