Waiting in line is a definite way to kill the mood, and waiting in line for a drink at a wedding is certainly no exception. As the host of your wedding, you want your guests to have a great time and don't want them stuck standing in line all night long. Unfortunately, more often than not, this tends to happen.
Now, it's important to know when (and why) this happens so that you can avoid it altogether at your wedding. The most common time for this to happen is right after your ceremony, as guests make their way over to cocktail hour. If you think about it, this makes sense, right? Everyone is arriving at the SAME time, everyone is thirsty, and nobody knows what the options are - so how do you avoid it?
Below we have compiled five tips that will solve the problem and will prevent you from having an unbearable bar line at your wedding.
TIP NUMBER ONE: Provide Enough Bartenders
This might sound simple, but you would be surprised how often couples don't have enough bartenders at their wedding. To ensure a steady moving line, we recommend hiring 1 bartender for every 75 guests. If you find yourself on the cusp, consider how much you think your guests will drink. Are they heavy drinkers or light drinkers? Use this knowledge to decide whether you should add the additional bartender.
TIP NUMBER TWO: Limit The Drink Options
With fewer drink options guests will spend much less time choosing their selections. Also, keep in mind that fancy cocktails take much longer to make than pouring a glass of wine or a beer. In order to keep that line moving, we suggest keeping it simple and limiting the bar menu at your wedding to solely beer, wine and a signature cocktail.
TIP NUMBER THREE: Tray Pass Beverages
One of the best ways to prevent a bar line at your wedding is to greet guests with beverages as they walk into cocktail hour. We suggest having a server tray pass either red and white wine, champagne, or your signature drink. Believe it or not, guests are going to much less particular about what they are drinking if it is being handed to them! It will also satisfy guests and they won't have a need to even go to the bar.
TIP NUMBER FOUR: Create A Large Bar Sign
When the beverage options aren't listed, your bartenders are required to tell each and every guest in line the options. Believe it or not, this takes time! Not only that, but it then takes extra time for your guests to decide what they are feeling like sipping on.
TIP NUMBER FIVE: Don't Place ALL The Bars In One Spot
I suggest setting your bars on different sides of cocktail hour and, if at all possible, I suggest placing them away from the entrance. I say this because if there is a bar placed right at the entrance to your cocktail hour, then all your guests are going to stop for a drink and you are going to end up with a bottleneck. On the contrary, if you have multiple bars and they are set away from the entrance, guests are going to be more apt to scatter throughout the space; preventing a huge and uninviting line!