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Feb 5, 2014 12:26 PM

Mandatory tab at a bar

I am planning on hosting a casual party at a bar for 50 people or so, with guests coming in and out. I recently found out that the bar in which I want to host the party requires everything to be put on a single tab, which is a problem for me because I was planning on people getting their own drinks, and splitting the tab at the end of the night seems unrealistic since so many people will be leaving early. Also since it's all going to be on one tab I am worried about the bartender making a mistake on the bill and not being able to catch it. Does anyone happen to know what is the right way to have everyone pay by the drink so as not to be left with a massive bill at the end?

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  1. I don't have a solution. But why do they want one tab? Bars are generally set up to handle a scenario just like you are describing. It sounds like how a regular evening would run...

    1. I'm sorry if I"m confused but as you said "have everyone pay by the drink" have them pay for their own drinks when the order them?

      1. Are you renting space in the bar for the party? Thus the tab portion? Or are you all just showing up at this bar? I think the set-up of the party will really impact if and how you may be able to handle this.

        There was one party at a bar that I remember where we had "drink tickets" to exchange for drinks. But in this instance we didn't pay for them - each guest was given 3 that were good for any mixed drink at the various bars. In your instance you could try something like this - if the bar would allow it . . . .but if they don't do this regularly, it might be a huge headache for them and they may not let you . . . .

        1. Don't tell the bar it's a party?

          1. I don't understand the premise of your party. Do you have a separate room or space just for your guests and there is a start and a finish time for the party, with food provided for which you are paying? Or, is it basically everyone just showing up when they can and ordering and paying for their own drinks at the bar? To me, that is not an organized party. It is just a bunch of folks meeting up and having a few drinks. If that is the case, I wouldn't even tell the bar, just have people show up as they want, but be sure to pick a place that is big enough.