Tuesday, June 13, 2006

99 BOTTLES OF BEER ON THE WALL: ALCOHOL AT YOUR WEDDING (PART II)

One reason I love getting comments from you guys is that it brings new issues to the table--comments to my last post raised the alcohol vs. no alcohol debate.

While I'm not going to address that issue at the moment, and I do acknowledge that this is a very sensitive topic, I want to take the opportunity to raise a few points about what NOT to do IF you are serving alcohol at your wedding....the commentators made me realize that ALCOHOL MUST BE SERVED "CORRECTLY" -- OR IT SHOULDN'T BE SERVED AT ALL.

The subject of my post is pretty simple. Cash Bar. As in: Don't have one. I am the first to acknowledge that the cost of a wedding is, in many cases, egregious -- and that the cost of alcohol certainly has something to do with that.

An important aspect of your wedding is the VIBE -- is it a fun, happy reception? Are people up and about, smiling and laughing? I know that when I have my wedding, I want my guests to feel like they are at a party of sorts -- and to be honest, I think that making guests pay for their drinks would definitely be a buzz-kill-- both literally and figuratively.

If people have to pay for their drinks, they will be less likely to partake. And while I'm certainly not advocating having s*%&-faced friends and family swinging from the chandeliers, I don't think that, if you decide to serve alcohol, your choices should prevent people from partaking.

Also--haven't people paid for enough? Paying for the wedding gift is, for many guests, a major expense--not to mention the shower gift, bachelorette party gift, travel expenses, etc. etc. that may be added into the equation. Having people pay for their drinks at a wedding is another "add on" that is unexpected and unnecessary. If you have to do it -- then I would suggest cutting out the alcohol entirely---or making sure the affair is casual enough that people can bring their own. Honestly -- BYOB is probably a better idea than a Cash Bar ever is....

So, to conclude, I think having alcohol or not is a personal, individual decision -- however, if you do decide to have it -- do it right, or not at all.

Stay tuned!

5 comments:

Dataceptionist said...

hmm I guess I disagree, BUT I will say in my defence, that from what I have seen, attending weddings in Oz doesn't seem to be as expensive as it is for US weddings. Rarely are guests asked to travel outside their city and the cost of gifts is considerably lesser, average being say $70 $US a couple for the wedding gift and $15 $US for a shower gift. So if weddings have cash bars, guests normally appreciate the couple is having a fairly cheap wedding and are happier to pay for drinks. That's just in my experience in another country.

Btw, great topic Wedding Fairy.

Riona said...

I agree 100%.

One way of keeping the cost down is to have wine and beer only. That's what we're doing. I've been to wine and beer receptions before and they were just dandy.

Also, our venue lets us bring our own - without corkage fees! Which believe you me saves a lot on an Irish wedding - and doesn't allow hard liquor anyway.

Dataceptionist said...

Riona we're doing the same, just wine and beer. It's unusual here for it to be a full bar, but its not unheard of. I mean, i know when I'm a guest I'll drink cocktails if they're on the tab, but if they're not I'll survive on wine.

Dataceptionist said...

Riona we're doing the same, just wine and beer. It's unusual here for it to be a full bar, but its not unheard of. I mean, i know when I'm a guest I'll drink cocktails if they're on the tab, but if they're not I'll survive on wine.

mrbunsrocks said...

I think this can often be a regional thing. In my area, it is normal to have a host cocktail bar, wine with dinner and then cash bar.

People expect this and tend to gift accordingly (avg. about $100/couple).