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