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How much to pay a bartender?

Is anyone else having a DIY bar and hiring an outside bartender? Rather than go  through an employment agency my FI wants to ask a bartender that he knows from a local bar... what is the hourly going rate to hire a bartender for the evening... anyone know? I don't want to insult with a low offer, but I'm on a budget and don't want to overpay either! I'm thinking like $25/hour?

Re: How much to pay a bartender?

  • The only thing is if you go outside of Pro's you'll want to watch who is responsible for the liability in case something would happen as a result of their booze pouring.  Most pro's have insurance which many venues require and is a great idea so it doesnt come back on you guys.  Have you checked out Just Bartending?  We've worked with them in 2010 and they were pretty awesome:)
  • First, you need to check with your venue to see whether they require a bonded bartender. Even if they don't I HIGHLY recommend you use one to protect yourself. If you choose to not get someone who is bonded licensed, you should purchase liability insurance which will end up costing more than just hiring a bonded bartender in the first place. For the bartender for our venue hired through the venue we paid 200 for the bartender and 200 for the setup for five hours. I think 200300 is average, and you should tip generously on top of that.
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  • I hired bartenders for my wedding in April.  We went through Mack Services, located in Lancaster.  The cost for two bartenders for about 4.5 hours total was somewhere around $250 (I think, can't remember EXACT cost).  We also didn't tip them ourselves as our guests did a good job of that and Mack Services suggested we go that route, as well.
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