Wedding Reception Forum

Toonie bar, Tack or tasteful?

Hey Brides to be!

I hail from Canada, and wanted to have an open bar reception...but unfortunately, I'm not made of money, so would asking the guest to pay two dollars a drink be tacky? Or a good way to cut down on bar costs?

Re: Toonie bar, Tack or tasteful?

  • Asking your guests to pay for drinks (even at a reduced cost) is usually not a very good idea. Yes, it saves you some money, but it also is annoying for guests - who have often already paid for gifts, hotel rooms, etc. One good way to save on bar costs would be to just do wine and beer - that way you can still afford an open bar and your guests don't have to pony up extra $$. Or, if that's still not in the budget, you can maybe cut back in another area that isn't as important to you (flowers, less expense table linens, etc.).
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  • Dreamergirl8812Dreamergirl8812 your closet member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    Tacky.



    Anniversary
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    ejpentecost
  • Proper hosting doesn't require the host be "made of money".  There are options that don't require your guests to help defray the cost of your party.  As PP suggested, you could host beer and wine. You could cut favors, programs, flowers.  You could cut your guest list.  You could have a lunch/brunch reception where people would likely drink less.  You could have a dry wedding (though I am not a fan of this option and *I* would rather pay for my drink BUT asking guests to do so is an etiquette faux pas).  It is impolite to ask your guests to pay for anything.  
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  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    Would you invite someone over to your home for dinner and charge them for drinks?
    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
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  • JoanE2012JoanE2012 Exit 21 (Jersey!) member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    In Response to Toonie bar, Tack or tasteful?:
    [QUOTE]Hey Brides to be! I hail from Canada, and wanted to have an open bar reception...but unfortunately, I'm not made of money, so would asking the guest to pay two dollars a drink be tacky? Or a good way to cut down on bar costs?
    Posted by OhHeyItsIna[/QUOTE]

    Not many are made of money.  We save up for it or we cut back.  Charging your guests is not an option.

  • NYCMercedesNYCMercedes BOS, NYC, DC. Forever a city girl member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited May 2013
    Scale down the wedding in other areas so you can afford to host your guests properly. Plan a smaller wedding at a less expensive venue and have it during the afternoon so you can be a gracious hostess.
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Tacky is for stripper shoes and balloon arches.

    Asking your guests to pay for anything is rude.  
  • We can't afford a full open bar, so we're hosting wine and beer (and soft drinks of course). Cut down the price quite a bit.
    I wouldn't ask people to pay. I hate the "tacky" word, but I just think it's rude.
  • I'm curious about how many people who replied that this was tacky, are actually American? I'm Canadian, and I've never been to a wedding where there hasn't been a toonie or loonie bar. Usually there is complimentary wine, sometimes a one hour open bar for cocktail hour, and then a toonie bar. And the suggestions for people not to serve alcohol or to just serve limited beer and wine? LAME SAUCE! I would be so annoyed if I showed up to a wedding and couldn't drink as much as I want. Another key cultural difference that may be at play here is that many Americans still seem to do a send off dance, or end the party at 10 or 11 (sometimes - God forbid - earlier!). In Canada, or at least the region I'm from, we party for as long as we can stay up. Which means many hours of drinking. Which means a toonie bar is a wicked deal, for everyone. 
    Knottie1436906691
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    I'm curious about how many people who replied that this was tacky, are actually American? I'm Canadian, and I've never been to a wedding where there hasn't been a toonie or loonie bar. Usually there is complimentary wine, sometimes a one hour open bar for cocktail hour, and then a toonie bar. And the suggestions for people not to serve alcohol or to just serve limited beer and wine? LAME SAUCE! I would be so annoyed if I showed up to a wedding and couldn't drink as much as I want. Another key cultural difference that may be at play here is that many Americans still seem to do a send off dance, or end the party at 10 or 11 (sometimes - God forbid - earlier!). In Canada, or at least the region I'm from, we party for as long as we can stay up. Which means many hours of drinking. Which means a toonie bar is a wicked deal, for everyone. 
    American or not, you should host your guests completely.  And I know a few Canadians who would agree with us Americans so don't say it is just because we are from the US that we don't think toonie bars are tasteful.

    Um, so I am guessing people who have a morning wedding with a brunch reception are LAME SAUCE to you huh?  Don't lump all Americans into one category cause it kind of makes you look ignorant.


    @KnotPorscha - any chance your IT guys have come up with a system to automatically close threads that are a year or more old so zombie threads don't keep popping up?

  • I'm curious about how many people who replied that this was tacky, are actually American? I'm Canadian, and I've never been to a wedding where there hasn't been a toonie or loonie bar. Usually there is complimentary wine, sometimes a one hour open bar for cocktail hour, and then a toonie bar. And the suggestions for people not to serve alcohol or to just serve limited beer and wine? LAME SAUCE! I would be so annoyed if I showed up to a wedding and couldn't drink as much as I want. Another key cultural difference that may be at play here is that many Americans still seem to do a send off dance, or end the party at 10 or 11 (sometimes - God forbid - earlier!). In Canada, or at least the region I'm from, we party for as long as we can stay up. Which means many hours of drinking. Which means a toonie bar is a wicked deal, for everyone. 
    Glad you're rude enough to demand that whatever someone hands you for free isn't good enough - what a trashy attitude.

    There's actually plenty of Canadian brides around here; there was a recent thread where they all came out to defend the fact that Canadians do, in fact, know how to properly host a wedding. 
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    MyNameIsNot
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