Food and alcohol are two of the most expensive parts of a wedding reception. Buffets and time of day are a great way to cut down on the cost of food. However there are limited options for cutting back on the alcohol tab while still not having to charge at the bar. To help cut back on some costs here are five tips to help keep you alcohol tab low at your wedding reception.
Limited Hard Alcohol
The best way to save money on your alcohol bill is to have only a few types of hard alcohol and mixers available. This might mean you have a short list on the bar that says the few types of mixed drinks and other bottled alcohol available. A few examples are margaritas, rum and cola, cranberry and vodka, and mimosas. Then you just have to stock up on the two ingredients in each drink which is not as expensive as an unlimited bar.
The nice thing about purchasing bottled beer versus kegs is that it is less expensive and if one type is preferred over another then you can return unopened cases. This saves you money and creates less waste in the end. Make sure you talk to the alcohol store to verify that they will return the unopened cases because some stores have different policies or a no return policy.
There should be at least one store in town that will allow returns and if that is not the case then you should only purchase beer you would drink yourself. Then the leftovers do not go to waste and you can save it for future parties.
Cases of Wine
To help save you money on the wine you should buy it by the case. This is typically the best deal when purchasing many bottles at once due to the large order discount. If you live near a winery then they might have an even better deal for you if you purchase several cases.
A rule of thumb when ordering wine for the wedding is to have at least one good red and one good white wine at the bar. Possibly two types of each to give more selection if your budget allows and you would not mind drinking any of them left over.
Offering a few of the most popular bottle alcoholic mixed drinks is a great way to save money as well. These come in larger packs and do not cost nearly as much as the alcohol for mixed drinks. Many young adults enjoy these drinks as they are not too strong and are pretty tasty.
Just like the bottled beer you may be able to return unopened cases of the other alcoholic beverages. Talk it over with the different alcohol stores in the area of the wedding before purchasing. Then you can decide how much you want to stock up on these bottled beverages.
Champagne for All
As a traditional part of the wedding reception you should have enough champagne to give each person a half glass for the toast. Then if you plan on having mimosas at the bar then case might be good but do not count on champagne as a big hit compared to the mixed drinks, beer or wine. Just be prepared for the toast and that should cover how much champagne you have.
Keep it Simple
The most important thing to remember is to keep it simple. It is easy to get overwhelmed when you are deciding which alcohol to purchase and how much based on the number of guests. Run through your guest list and count all the people who are of drinking age. This is a good point of reference when it comes to purchasing cases of beer, wine, hard alcohol, champagne, and bottled mixed drinks for your wedding reception.
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