Food and Cakes

Open Bar and tipping

I am having an outdoor wedding at my parent house this June.  We are having an open bar with beer and 5 hard liquors plus soda. We will be having 2 bar stations and 4 bartenders.  We are paying them a flat $75 for the night (8 hours) plus feeding them and splitting tips.  I am wondering how I should word tipping to our guests.  I will be posting a list of drink options on the bar top for our guests and wanted to add something at the bottom regaurding tipping.  Any suggestions?

Re: Open Bar and tipping

  • lmg1115lmg1115 member
    10 Comments
    edited December 2011
    I would make a really nice sign with the drink options. You can put something at the bottom about tipping or you can just have a nice glass jar labeled for tips out. People will get the hint without having it suggested to them.
  • edited December 2011
    I'm not a fan of tips jars at weddings. I don't drink much so I usually get something non alcoholic, but if there's a tip jar I feel sort of obligated to still give a dollar or two. It's just kind of annoying because then non-alocohlic drinks become just about as much as they would be at a cash bar.

    I feel like if you're having an open bar, it's not really that much more for you to cover the tip. If you insist on having a tip jar, just leave a jar, no signs, no notices. People know what a tip jar looks like (if you really don't think they'll get it, start it off with a couple bucks yourself).
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_open-bar-tipping?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:23Discussion:8a10ee00-0ddd-4188-936b-513c8c527be8Post:dcae287a-9ef1-40ea-98f7-eeaa90cdc965">Re: Open Bar and tipping</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm not a fan of tips jars at weddings. I don't drink much so I usually get something non alcoholic, but if there's a tip jar I feel sort of obligated to still give a dollar or two. It's just kind of annoying because then non-alocohlic drinks become just about as much as they would be at a cash bar.<strong> I feel like if you're having an open bar, it's not really that much more for you to cover the tip. If you insist on having a tip jar, just leave a jar, no signs, no notices. People know what a tip jar looks like (if you really don't think they'll get it, start it off with a couple bucks yourself).</strong>
    Posted by sister2groom[/QUOTE]

    I agree with this.  Try to cover gratuities yourself. 

  • edited December 2011
    I agree with the others, gratuity is your responsibility.  I would not have a tip jar and I most definitely recommend against any kind of sign.  Some guests may decide to tip, but they can hand the money to the bartender if that's the case.  Putting out a jar implies that you expect people to tip, which I think is inappropriate for a wedding.
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic
    Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_open-bar-tipping?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:23Discussion:8a10ee00-0ddd-4188-936b-513c8c527be8Post:5e46cfd6-b20f-4d8b-a8aa-c315fbe73837">Re: Open Bar and tipping</a>:
    [QUOTE]I agree with the others, gratuity is your responsibility.  I would not have a tip jar and I most definitely recommend against any kind of sign.  Some guests may decide to tip, but they can hand the money to the bartender if that's the case.  Putting out a jar implies that you expect people to tip, which I think is inappropriate for a wedding.
    Posted by LauraT25[/QUOTE]

    I completely agree. You pay = you tip. We tipped the bartender at our wedding. However, I know guests tipped in addition - but there was no tip jar and NO prompting. I do not tip on open bars because I do not feel that is my responsibility. It's the host's.
    my read shelf:
    Meredith's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)
    40/112

    Photobucket
  • ootmother2ootmother2 member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 25 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_open-bar-tipping?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:23Discussion:8a10ee00-0ddd-4188-936b-513c8c527be8Post:c5f6a26a-17f7-4cb6-b944-e15c2bf15824">Re: Open Bar and tipping</a>:
    [QUOTE]I would make a really nice sign with the drink options. You can put something at the bottom about tipping or you can just have a nice glass jar labeled for tips out. People will get the hint without having it suggested to them.
    Posted by lmg1115[/QUOTE]

    Do NOT put a tip jar out for your guests.  It's extremely rude
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_open-bar-tipping?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:23Discussion:8a10ee00-0ddd-4188-936b-513c8c527be8Post:fc2c8c6c-fb54-4ba6-94c4-74a0deef9c9b">Re: Open Bar and tipping</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Open Bar and tipping : I completely agree. You pay = you tip. <strong>We tipped the bartender at our wedding. However, I know guests tipped in addition - but there was no tip jar and NO prompting.</strong> I do not tip on open bars because I do not feel that is my responsibility. It's the host's.
    Posted by msmerymac[/QUOTE]

    The same was true at our wedding.  And ditto not tipping a an open bar; I am usually a pretty generous tipper, but as a guest at a wedding I don't tip because the expectation is that the host(s) will cover gratuity.
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic
    Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • edited December 2011
    Definitely no tip jar.  Cover it!
  • edited December 2011
    I wouldn't even put a jar out. If your guests are kind and want to tip, they can hand the money to the bartender or lay it on the bar and they will pocket it. I too recommend that you plan to tip yourselves at the end of the evening.
    Last Post 7/8 Leave for Paradise 7/9 Our Beach Wedding 7/13
    image


    Planning Bio
  • edited December 2011
    Like many pps have said. Don't put out a tip jar. I would check with the contract if the tip for the bartenders is already included. In our contract it is made clear that we are pre-tipping the bartenders.
  • edited December 2011
    I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with most people on here.

    Every single open bar wedding that I've ever been to has had a tip jar.  I think putting a sign in front of it is a bit of a stretch as far as ediquette goes, however putting a jar there is not rude.
    LilySlim Weight loss tickers
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_open-bar-tipping?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:23Discussion:8a10ee00-0ddd-4188-936b-513c8c527be8Post:5d30f30f-7544-4d1e-a08e-1a880f59a678">Re: Open Bar and tipping</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with most people on here. Every single open bar wedding that I've ever been to has had a tip jar.  I think putting a sign in front of it is a bit of a stretch as far as ediquette goes, however putting a jar there is not rude.
    Posted by ADTonk[/QUOTE]

    Huh. Maybe it's regional?  I'm almost tempted to make a poll.  Not only have I never seen one, but my contract with my venue explicitly stated that there wouldn't be a tip jar.
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic
    Lilypie First Birthday tickers
  • edited December 2011
    Your flat fee is crazy cheap!  Where did you find these bartenders?  Just for that, I'd tip them a ton!  haha

    My 2 bartenders were $30/hour for 8 hours PLUS tip.  ugh...
  • edited December 2011
    I also disagree with many people on here.  I think the tip jar is fine.  It probably also depends on your wedding though.  We're having a pretty fancy reception, but got lucky and a friend is bartending for us.  We're making up a list of the drinks available and then putting a glass jar with a few dollars on the edge of the bar for people to tip if they want.  People are not obligated at all, it is just a nice way to say thanks.  It is also off to the side, not right under you when you order, lol... so people will not feel so obligated as they might if the jar was right next to them.  It's all about what you want though.  Some people think its rude, others could care less... you're there to have fun and enjoy the day... tip if you want, don't if you prefer not to...  It's your day, who cares what others think anyways! 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_food-cakes_open-bar-tipping?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:23Discussion:8a10ee00-0ddd-4188-936b-513c8c527be8Post:91ab8a2e-bc6a-4ca3-8c36-52dbd7a94dbc">Re: Open Bar and tipping</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Open Bar and tipping : Huh. Maybe it's regional?  I'm almost tempted to make a poll.  Not only have I never seen one, but my contract with my venue explicitly stated that there wouldn't be a tip jar.
    Posted by LauraT25[/QUOTE]

    I'm not sure if this is regional or not, I'm from the Philadelphia area.  I've been to casual weddings and very nice classy expensive weddings.  The bartender has had a fancy glass tip jar there every time.  It wasn't in any way required, but anyone with an ounce of common sense knows that bartenders live off of tips and they won't feel offended if the jar is there.  With that being said, I can't understand why so many people think it's rude.  It's optional.  IMO a cash bar is more rude than having a tip jar there.
    LilySlim Weight loss tickers
  • edited December 2011
    Tasteful tip Jars at the bar are totally fine.  You dont have to tell people to tip. Be sure and add a few bucks to each jar so people see it is the right thing to do.  

    At the end of the night, if the tip jars look emoty then give each guy a little something typically 20% so if they are paid  $75 each that tip of 20% would be about $16 bucks each.
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards