Each Wednesday, we tackle wedding etiquette. At times, it’s a reader question or one from a colleague, friend or family member and other times we’ll cover a popular issue. (Note: Questions may be edited for clarity and brevity.)


Question: We started working on the food and beverage portion of the reception planning. The cost of an open bar is way over what we can actually spend and we know a cash bar is a no-no for weddings. What can we do if an open bar is too costly for our budget?

Answer: As you astutely noted, it’s poor form to opt for a cash bar at a wedding. While an open bar is of course a generous gesture, most guests do not expect it and are in fact surprised when it’s on offer. To trim the beverage budget you could do a variety of things, such as: Opt for beer and wine only; offer a specialty cocktail at cocktail hour then beer and wine only during the reception (or keep the specialty cocktail for both if it works for your spending plan); if the venue allows it, purchase and bring in your own spirits. As you can see, there are a few ways you can get creative, stay within your budget and still have a few adult beverage options for your guests while they dance the night way.


Do you have a solution to share or a wedding etiquette question? Respond in the comments or email Melanie@MyNewOrleans.com.