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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Open Bar or Cash Bar?

We always get questions on whether if an Open Bar is worth it?  An open bar can cost an average of $3,000, and it's definitely a large factor when their is a limited budget.

And the answer all depends on you (assuming you are the bride/groom/or someone who is paying for the wedding).

Photo courtesy of: MG Events

Here are some things to consider:

1. Budget - no explanation needed.

2. Guests - This is probably the main factor to deciding whether to have an Open Bar, Cash Bar, or even no bar at all!

If the majority of guests are just family, then you might just consider having a few bottles of wine at each table.  Keep in mind that an open bar is usually charged by the number of guests, and children are considered too.

But if your guest list consists of mostly people you go to happy hour with, then you might want to splurge on the open bar.

You can also have drink tokens for guests.  Give 2 tokens for each guest (over the age of 21) to get whichever drink they want.  And if they want more than that, then they can pay for it themselves.

If you are have a lot of guests flying in from out of town, please remember that they are already paying a lot of money just to attend your wedding.

Remember to have non-alcoholic drinks for those who can't drink or don't want to!

Photo courtesy of: Cococozy

3. Atmosphere - It used to be that having a cash bar was a big no-no at weddings.  It was considered improper etiquette, and rude. However, now weddings are more laid back and pretty much anything goes.  (BYOB is still considered tacky!)

With that in mind, if your wedding trends on the more traditional side, then it would be better etiquette to have an open bar.

Photo courtesy of: Capability Events

4. Venue - Most venues now have a variety of options on alcohol.  So ask your venue how much an open bar or cash bar would cost.  Remember to make sure that they have a liquor's license!  Consider bringing in your own liquor, but ask about the corking fee.  And remember to ask about protocal for tipping the bartender because that adds up!

And don't forget about the champagne toast!

Photo courtesy of: Love is the Cure Blog

5. Type of alcohol - We all know that the prices of alcohol vary greatly.  Therefore, it's really up to you on what types of alcohol you prefer.  Here's a great article by Real Simple on when to spend and splurge!

If you're looking to cut costs:
- Instead of buying a bunch of different types of cheap alcohol, see if buying bulk of 2 or 3 kinds of decent alcohol would be less costly.  Quality is better than quantity.
- You might want to have only one signature cocktail that matches the colors/theme of your wedding.  Then just serve your favorite inexpensive beer/wine.
- Go with cheaper vodka.  Vodka drinks are usually mixed in with something else.  Therefore guests won't really taste much difference. 

Photo Courtesy of: Prima Donna Bride

TIP: If you cannot decide, have an Open Bar for only an hour or two during the reception.  That way guests who want can go for the Open Bar, but you don't end up paying for a lot of extras.  Think about doing it when you are taking your photos.  That way your guests have something to do while your busy capturing once in a lifetime memories!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

What's for Lunch?

Here's an awesome new website for you readers to check out: Lunchwalla

The site makes getting together with your friends super easy!  Basically it gets everybody together for Lunch (or dinner, breakfast, cocktails, etc...).

Example - If I want to get together with my friends for happy hour after work today...
Step 1: Invite friends
Step 2: Select the place(s) I'm considering of going (yes, I can pick more than 1 place - read on to see what I'm talking about!)
Step 3: Send the Invitations, and you're done!

Now here's the cool part...
Your friends can vote on which place they want to go!  So by happy hour... everyone will know who, when and where to be! Easy!

Some other cool features:
- There's lots of coupons on the site!
- Import contacts directly from your email(s)
- State if you're a vegetarian
- Sign up with your Facebook account (which I assume everyone has, unless you live under a rock, or you're my parents... I'm just kidding! not really...)

Finally...a website that helps indecisive people like me