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Questions and Answers

Q: What do bartender services include?

A: Bartenders offer drinks serving services. They are usually hired for parties, large business events and meetings, celebrations, and various gatherings. Bartenders operate equally with alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages depending on the event they work at. Apart from that, bartending services may also include bartending shows of one or several people; be ready, however, that not all bartenders have a show on their price list.

Q: How do bartenders charge?

A: Bartenders can charge either per hour of work or per event in total. Per hour rates are common for individual bartenders who plan to solely serve at your event. For larger events that require several bartenders to work together, you are likely to receive a flat rate that will specify the number of people and man-hours that your employees will spend at the event.

Q: What is the average cost of the bartending services?

A: Per hour rates vary from $40 to $55 for one bartender and they include labor only. Flat rates vary significantly in relation to every particular event, but the calculations should be about the same as the per hour ones. Besides that, expect to pay hourly rates for every hour outside of the flat rate deal. To learn more about the pricing policy in the industry, please see our bartender cost guide

Q: What factors affect the cost of the bartending services?

A: The main cost factor for bartenders is the hours you want them to work. This would influence the final charge and possible discounts if applicable. Apart from that, the price of services might be increased by the following:

  • Number of guests. Generally, one bartender is hired for up to 70 guests at a party to efficiently do the job. However, if you would like to save, you might have to pay a higher per hour rate or hire a second bartender.
  • Assistants. Even if you hire one bartender for 70 people, you cannot expect that all guests will have their drinks efficiently served unless there is additional staff. Bartender assistants cut fruit for cocktails, bring ice, wash glasses, and make sure that all drinks are ready for the bartender to do the cocktails. You can expect that when paying a flat rate, many bartenders will include assistants’ services.
  • Additional rentals. If you’re hiring a bartender for a private event separately from the venue, then remember to include glassware, trays, and rent for any other additional items that might be needed.
  • Holiday charges. Some bartenders also have a holiday fee that adds on to the standard pricing range.

Q: How to avoid dealing with a scam bartender?

A: A dishonest and unskillful bartender most often equals a shortage of alcohol, poor and unsavory drinks, and beverages spilled on guests. Such bartenders take money but don’t provide the declared services. Here are some factors for your consideration to avoid scam bartenders:

  • Age. Remember that while some states allow serving alcohol from 18 years, most of the country needs a bartender to be at least 21. Ensure that your hired staff meets this requirement to avoid legal problems.
  • Experience. Experience is much more valuable in this trade than any certificate or diploma. Ask a bartender to name a few places they worked at and inquire about the drinks they served and the way they did it. While asking about experience, you can also ask to provide you with a list of references to confirm the information.
  • License. Most states require bartenders to have a license to serve alcoholic drinks in public places. Make sure to verify it.
  • Safety certification. Only old-school bartenders who have been in business for many years obtain a proper safety certification. Yet, it’s always an advantage as this means that you hire an expert who knows how to deal with people under influence in order to avoid liability.
  • Cooperate with your venue. Most venues have their contacts in all fields, bartending included. So if you’re holding an event at some place, just cooperate with it and ask for some references to get a bartender for your event.
  • Presentation. Skill presentation and drink tasting are one of the best ways to see a bartender at work. Presentations instantly clarify the level of experience, suitability of a particular candidate for your event, and the general reliability of a person. Don’t forget to taste a couple of drinks to be sure that your event will have the right flavor.