Lookin' Good at 58

Sunday, July 21, 2013

When Bartending At a Wedding Don't Sell Yourself Short

About 6 months ago I ran into a former student of my bartending course at the local grocery store. She said she was going to get a hold of me to ask if I would like to work her wedding as a bartender.

I said sure and I worked it last night.

You know if anyone ask you if you would like to work at their wedding there are things you have to consider. First of all working a wedding may take 10-12 hours on your feet. At my age anything over 8 hours usually my whole body starts to seize up. Yesterday I showed up at 1 and left at 1:15 in the morning.

There is usually some pretty awkward spaces you have to work in as well so you have to consider how comfortable the area you will be for a long length of time and how that  will affect you. You have to remember to bend you knees when finding that Mikes Hard Lemonade at the bottom of the cooler.

Although weddings are usually a fun time with everyone celebrating you have to remember you will be very busy nearly all the time except towards the end when just the hard core party goers remain.

So when someone ask you what do you charge to bartend at their wedding don't be shy. Consider 12 hours and make your price excluding tips because you may not make much for 12 hours. The tips you get should just be a bonus. If it's a cocktail reception and you are there for only 3 hours I would say $120.

In this case when she asked me I said I would do it at $250. The extra $190 I received in tips was a bonus so after 12 hours I walked out with $440. That justified the pain in my body when I left.

I don't really like doing weddings or banquets but if I am asked I will always ask top shelve. Then it is worth it.

I made sure the bar was all clean when I left. Everything was put away. I didn't drink till near the end when the groom offered me one. As a note don't ever drink while doing a function or the host or whoever sees you taking a drink will deduct any extra coming your way. After all it is their booze you are drinking. You are technically not a guest. Be professional.

They were extremely happy and even gave me some food untouched that was extra sitting in the fridge for me to have. All in all I was extremely happy and so were they.

Don't sell yourself short. A bartender at a wedding who is responsible and doing a good job is worth the investment to the bride and groom. They can enjoy themselves knowing you have the bar under control.

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