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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

Do bartenders need to be licensed?

Certain counties, cities and states may require licensing. Check your local government’s regulations before starting your search.

In many cases, you might want to choose a bartender who has a license and/or certification. If you’re considering hiring a bartender for an upcoming event or a special occasional, check their online profiles to find out what credentials they have. If you can’t find the information online, don’t hesitate to ask them directly when requesting to receive free estimates.

How do I find a good bartender?

Put some time on your calendar to research and compare top-rated bartenders near you online. Start by looking at their ratings and services. For example, some bartending services will provide a waitstaff, glassware, ice, coolers, food and more.

Next, look at their photos of past events and read the customer reviews. Find feedback on the bartenders’ services. Did they offer fair pricing? Did they show up on time to set up? Did they bring all of the appropriate drinks, cups, supplies and decorations? Did they interact politely with the party guests and provide a pleasant overall experience? And did they do the agreed-upon cleanup afterward?

Narrow down your top choices, and start contacting the bartenders. Ask for cost estimates for your event, and tell them how many people will be attending, what type of event it is and what services you require. You should also ask them questions about their experience.

Bartenders may need a license in your state, county or city to work at a private party. Make sure they’re properly certified before you hire anyone.

How much does it cost to hire a bartender for a private party?

Hiring a bartender for a private party typically costs between $270 and $390 in total. On an hourly basis, expect to pay at least $40 to $60 per hour, as well as a flat fee. How much you’ll pay, however, depends on the time of year or day, the size of the party and other factors. Get in touch with a few bartenders near you and request a free estimate — it’s the only way to get an accurate idea of how much private bartending services will cost you.

Check out “How much does it cost to hire a bartender?” to learn more about the cost factors.

How much should you tip wedding bartenders?

Sometimes, a gratuity is included in your final bill. If not, consider tipping your wedding bartenders between 10% and 15%. However, this is not a set-in-stone rule. You can always tip more, perhaps 20%-25%, for great service.

What do bartenders cost for a wedding?

It costs roughly between $270 and $390 to hire a bartender. However, if you need a wedding bartender, you should request cost estimates from bartenders near you. Depending on the drinks you plan to serve, the number of guests and other factors, your total cost will vary.

Reviews for Ashburn bartenders
John T.
Fun bartender
Sip-N-Soirée, LLC AtlantaSip-N-Soirée, LLC Atlanta
Thumbtack Customer
Jennifer was GREAT! She was on time and made the best drinks. If you need a bartender ,Bartender 4 U should be your pick.
Germani H.
Great experience! We decided to hire a bartender for our Christmas ugly sweater party this year. The bartender was a hit! Communication leading up to the party was easy and the signature drink was excellent. The bartender even wore an ugly sweater to coordinate with our guests.
Signature Selection, LLCSignature Selection, LLC
Tim M.
He "changed" Bartending ending up
Fire's BartendingFire's Bartending
Jeremy M.
On the rocks did a wonderful job bartending for our event.
On The Rocx's Mobile BartendingOn The Rocx's Mobile Bartending
Heidi F.
Overall they were extremely responsive and our bartender was excellent.
CDE Event BartendersCDE Event Bartenders
Natasha H.
Amazing bartender. I've referred to others and plan on using again
Next Level Bar ServicesNext Level Bar Services
William B.
Very responsive and easy to work with. The bartender was very kind and attentive.
Woods Event ServicesWoods Event Services
Paige h.
Amazing bartender! They were incredibly helpful and super easy to work with.
CDE Event BartendersCDE Event Bartenders
Zandria B.
She is an amazing and personable bartender, I'll definitely hire her again.
Liquid BlissLiquid Bliss
Liz J.
Jamal was an awesome and professional bartender. I will hire him for upcoming events.
Signature Selection, LLCSignature Selection, LLC
Jonathan S.
Jonathan and his team provided bartending services for a large party I recently hosted. Three Djs preformed sets and over 700 people attended over the course of the night; the bartending team handled their job exceptionally well. I was very impressed with both the bartending services as well as their personable and upbeat attitude. Would definitely recommend Bottoms Up and will surely be using them in the future!
Bottoms Up Bartending ServicesBottoms Up Bartending Services
Ga w.
Great job by Millicent & Co. and a big shout out to Summoyia who was our bartender for the event. The bartending services was professional, courteous and efficient. All the guests has a great time. Millicent is quick to respond to any questions and was a pleasure to work with.
Millicent the Mixologist & Co.Millicent the Mixologist & Co.
Andy L.
Highly recommend Woods Bartending. They were super easy to communicate with, showed up on time, set everything up themselves and had a great time with our event guests. People raved about how much fun the bartenders were.
Woods Event ServicesWoods Event Services
Jackie H.
Craig and Kara were absolutely amazing! We had a large office event with 140 people and they were quick to serve and very friendly. I would highly recommend CDE Event Bartenders for any event that you need bartenders for!
CDE Event BartendersCDE Event Bartenders
Beth T.
Fire's Bartending is top-notch! His bar set-up, communications, timeliness and overall presentation was perfection. Highly recommend for any corporate events, weddings...basically anywhere you need a professional bartender and not have to worry about the details. Ask to try his lemonade!
Fire's BartendingFire's Bartending
Thumbtack Customer
Great bartender with amazing service. Excellent custom cocktails and really professional service. Will definitely rebook.
Fire's BartendingFire's Bartending
Andrea M.
A bartender was the bomb her drinks was on point and it got the party we are in need it to be I really appreciate
Pink Smoke Party RentalsPink Smoke Party Rentals
Rika S.
Fire did a great job prepping for & bartending at my party. I would recommend him to others!
Fire's BartendingFire's Bartending
Thumbtack Customer
Just perfect. I couldn't ask for a better bartender service. Thanks Fire. You're the best. Meowwwww
Fire's BartendingFire's Bartending
Ta L.
Forever Moore Entertainment was AMAZING!!! Loved our bartender! We will most definately be using them again!
Forever Moore EntertainmentForever Moore Entertainment
Jennfer J.
The bartender arrived on time and got right to work! She was very helpful in making our event a success!
Signature Selection, LLCSignature Selection, LLC
Alvina S.
They were so very helpful from beginning to the end. This was my first time personally hiring a bartender and Jamal was extremely responsive - helping me with selections and quantities for my party. This truly was an easy, breezy, seamless process and my bartender Zan was AMAZING and SWEET. I'll definitely use their services again!
Signature Selection, LLCSignature Selection, LLC
Cameron H.
Very polite and professional staff, and fit within our budget. All of our guests loved your bartenders!
Bottoms Up Bartending ServicesBottoms Up Bartending Services
Joshua W.
I enjoyed having her bartend for my wife birthday party, I would definitely use her again
Your Favorite Bartender LLCYour Favorite Bartender LLC
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Why you should hire a bartender

Make your next event memorable by hiring a professional bartender. An expert bartender takes the pressure off of you and turns any celebration into a special affair. The right mixologist can go beyond simple bar service and offer a delightful experience for your guests — while you get to spend your time entertaining and mingling. Whether you’re throwing a wedding, birthday party, company party or any other type of event, search for bartenders near you today. Compare their rates and hire a local pro who fits your needs.

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