When people think of weddings, they think of the lovely couple, a beautiful dress, and hopefully an open bar. But with so many horror stories of people not acting tastefully at weddings due to too much alcohol consumption, you might want to rethink having an open bar. Now I know that as you’re planning your wedding you’re already under a lot of stress about so many other decisions that seem like they have more weight. But, it’s all fun and games not to think about alcohol, until Uncle John is embarrassing the family once again.
So what exactly are the pros and cons of having an open bar at your wedding?
Pro #1: Your Friends Will Love You
We all know our friends. They like to pretend they’re adults, but most likely they still drink like they’re in college. If you are hoping to reunite people from college, it can be a great way for people to remember their most memorable college experiences.
Con #1: Your Friends Are Idiots
I love my college friends, but I also woke up to my roommate throwing up from time to time. Having an open bar might mean that people don’t feel that they should control themselves. You want your wedding day to be a great celebration of you, and your love, not a place where drunken brawls break out or your bridesmaids get weepy drunk.
Pro #2: You’ll Be A Good Host
It’s important to remember that people are spending quite of bit of money to get to your wedding. People have to buy gifts, they may be traveling, and they’re giving up their time for the day to spend it with you. They deserve to be treated well. An excellent way to thank guests is to let them drink as much as they want. Guests will be appreciative that they don’t have to spend more money on their drinks.
Con #2: People Are Idiots
Unfortunately, with an open bar, you can’t guarantee or keep track of how much people are drinking. Again, it’s hard to handle drunk people at your wedding when you have millions of other things going on. Plus, if these adults are parents, it can be tough if they get drunk with their children around. You can’t control people’s behavior, but you can enable them with alcohol to act a certain way. Not having an open bar will also significantly limit your chances of having liabilities.
Pro #3: Good Service
With open bars at weddings, guests are served quickly and efficiently. Quicker service = happier guests. It is nice that your guests can take a break from dancing, mingling, or eating to grab their favorite drink. That way you don’t have to worry about the catering company refilling everyone’s waters or iced teas promptly.
Con #3: Mixed Opinions
Some people can be judgmental about a lot of alcohol being served at a wedding. Your grandparents might not be as excited that you opted to have an open bar as your college buddies. Make sure that you discuss all your options with family members, and take into consideration opinions from different age groups. If you or your fiance have a history of alcoholism or alcoholics currently in your family, it might be wise to skip the open bar.
Pro #4: It Makes Your Life Easier
You don’t have to be running around like a chicken with its head cut off wondering if all your guests are getting the service they need. You will know that the guests have the option to get their drinks and more drinks when they need them.
Con #4: Budget
Open bars are far more expensive than having a dry wedding or cash bar. Make sure that you have properly allocated part of your budget to pay for this open bar. Yes, it might be more fun and better for the guests, but is it better for your pocket book? Make priorities for what you want to have at your wedding, and ensure that you have the money to cover those parts before you decide if you want to have an open bar.
I hope that if you choose to have an open bar or dry wedding, that you have a fantastic wedding day! For more tips on drinking on your big day, check out this article.