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Bring your own?(11 Posts)
We are having a very relaxed informal ‘reception’ in a marquee in a local field. I’m getting stressed about the bar situation as hiring one looks expensive for us and guests buying drinks! I was planning on buying a load of wine from Calais and spirits/beer etc from Costco and paying some friends teenagers (19) to run the bar and charge a minimal amount for drinks. Then my DM suggested people bringing their own, so put on the invite there will be a bar but please feel free to bring your own drinks.
Is this a ludicrous plan? How would you feel about it?
We did this for our wedding and it was fab. We worded it sort of as ‘in lieu of gifts we invite you to bring bring something alcoholic to add to the bar. Mixers will be provided and all contributions combined for a free bar all our guests can make full use of!’. It was very popular with our guests. We provided wine for dinner and a keg of beer and all mixers. Had tonnes left over and no-one was at all offended!
For a wedding I'd think it was a faff to bring drink and once you put it with everything else there's no guarantee someone else won't guzzle the lot and you're left with some cheap white wine despite bringing champagne, or something similar.
I'd just bulk buy from majestic or somewhere and charge £1 a drink to recover most costs. All guests think they're getting a great bargain and you're making a lot of money back. Win win.
FWIW, we did a free bar all night as well as reception drinks and beer/wine with the meal for 120 guests for £1,500 all in and had a fair bit left. That's with most guests in their 20s and drinking a lot.
I think it's a great idea and much cheaper than a paid bar for guests. Could you provide some wine for tables and then whatever they bring is extra?
I did this for a landmark birthday party & it worked well. We got a couple of local friends in their early 20s to man the bar, and bought a reasonable amount of beers & wine, plus mixers, and Dh who home brews did a few different beers in kegs. Then asked people to bring ‘a contribution to the bar’ in lieu of presents. Iirc we also got enough fizz for a glass each as people arrived. Seemed to work well - we had lots leftover & people bought what they actually wanted to drink! I’ve been to a wedding where most people bought food contributions and it was brilliant (lots of guests were of Caribbean heritage so the most awesome food!) but less practical for most guests maybe!
How about instead of gifts BYO???
You do need some way of keeping drinks cold though.
Yes I was planning on doing welcome drinks, a big dispenser of pimms and soft drinks and some table wine for all guests. Was more the evening drinks I was thinking of. I can see the point of putting your drinks down and then going missing though!
Friends did something similar.
Instead of a wedding list they put down a list if food to bring.
Platter of cocktail sausages
Large bowl of coleslaw
3 Bottles of Red
12 cans of beer
They made a list then just provided anything that wasn't crossed off
My friend did bring your own food. It was so lovely. Everyone brought something different and their speciality. Friend coordinated it a bit but only to prevent lots of people bringing the same. There was a bar in the hall and you bought your own drinks. We had a quiz and games. Candy floss. Fancy dress theme was milkmaids and scarecrows.
I think it’s a good idea and does work out cheaper for hosts and guests.
Great idea for evening drinks. Everyone gets exactly what they want without paying bar prices. I've been to a wedding like this and it worked brilliantly. A nice touch was glasses were provided as were loads of buckets of ice so you could keep your drinks cool.
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