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Does anyone have bartending experience?

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Printed Date: Jul 12 2020 at 11:52am

Topic: Does anyone have bartending experience?
Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Subject: Does anyone have bartending experience?
Date Posted: May 26 2014 at 8:58pm
How long was your course?
How long after finishing did you find a job?
How long did it actually take to adjust to the first job you had?
Did you enjoy it?

Ive had the idea of wanting to bartend for awhile now and I think I might finally make it happen this summer. Its so damn expensive I dont wanna spend all that money and then later on not like it.

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 26 2014 at 10:56pm
nah but good luck
sounds like fun..

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 7:14am

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 11:00am
why you rolling your eyes at me HB?

Posted By: f8dagrate
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 11:58am
Originally posted by HeyBeautiful18 HeyBeautiful18 wrote:



Posted By: coconess
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 1:24pm
i used to wanna bartend.

i think its hard to get hired without experience though 

Posted By: goodm3
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 2:21pm
I don't drink but I do know that for a lot of young professionals will hire bartenders to home parties/cookouts/etc...

So if you have friends who have lots of gathers (especially with summer coming up)...I would definitely start announcing your services.....

it'll be a great side business...

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:41pm

bartending sounds super get to meet lots of interesting people...
i wasnt being sarcastic...

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:44pm
Originally posted by ModelessDiva ModelessDiva wrote:

why you rolling your eyes at me HB?

Cause I thought I was gonna come in here and get an answer but then that's all you wrote

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:47pm i was tryna bump your thread...

i know somebody on here got some experience...

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:47pm
Yeah I think I'm gonna go for it!!

I'm young and friendly with nice boobs.. so why not

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:54pm
hey! hey! hey!LOL
go for it...

have you done research?

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:54pm
Research on what?

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:56pm
like seeing how to get started...and what to expect

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 5:57pm
and reading other bartenders experiences...

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:00pm
Well I looked up school. Theres one right down the road from my job and they have a 3 week course starting next Monday

I havent done any other research yet. Ill do that tonight

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:04pm
ah ok

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:05pm

How Much Do Bartenders Make?

Bartending can be a lot of things. For some it is exciting, for others exhausting. At times there is a lot of fun to be had, at others it is rather dull. But for the most part, bartending is almost always rewarding in the financial sense, as long as you stick with it.

When you first learn" rel="nofollow - how to become a bartender , it may not seem all that lucrative. Generally speaking, high-end, busier establishments are looking to take on bartenders with a solid level of experience, so if you’re just entering the industry you will probably do so at a less-upscale location, or perhaps at a tavern where there is no need to mix cocktails, just pull beer-taps. You also usually start off working lazy Monday and Tuesday shifts before tackling the often frenzied weekends. However, as you gain more understanding of the work, learn the tricks of customer service, and attain better shifts at higher-paying bars, it is not uncommon to end up walking out the door each night with several hundred dollars in tips.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics," rel="nofollow - the average hourly wage for a bartender is $10.36, and the average yearly take-home is $21,550.  These numbers, however, in no way reflect the reality of the situation. Generally speaking, a bartender earns much more than the government ever finds out about.

Tips are everything

A bartender’s income is comprised mostly of tips–" rel="nofollow - 55% to be exact . In some states, employers aren’t even required to pay their bartenders the minimum wage and can pay as low as $2.13 per hour, and they depend on their tips almost entirely. With the exception of those attached to credit cards, there is no way for the government to know how much a person is tipped, and it is an almost universal practice to declare only what is tipped on cards. This leads to a less-taxed check come payday.

A bartender’s salary also varies greatly from state to state. In states where a bartender receives a solid hourly wage alongside their tips, such as Hawaii, Washington, Massachusetts, and Oregon, a bartender’s average yearly (reported) earnings push up toward $30,000 per year.

It may be worth noting that the higher paying states generally house a more liberal-minded population, while in more traditionally conservative regions—Montana, Idaho, the Midwest, and the South—bartenders earn considerably less (" rel="nofollow - see BLS map ). This can be explained by two factors: the lower minimum wages (or in some cases a complete lack of a minimum for bartenders), and the lower population densities (which leads to less tips). So if you’re looking to earn hard cash in the bartending game, hit the coast. Some of the highest paying cities include Boston, Seattle, San Francisco, and Newark.

Another thing to take into consideration when looking at the salary numbers provided by the BLS, is that many bartenders do not work full time, instead taking on a couple of nights a week in order to supplement another occupation. A full-time, well-experienced bartender working the best shifts can count on taking in some serious scratch.

How to rake it in

Now that we’ve covered the basics of how a bartender is paid, let’s move on to something perhaps more important—how a bartender can get paid more.

There are a variety of ways to increase the amount of your tips. The first is obvious—be a well-liked bartender. Tell jokes and stories, listen to drunken rambles and lamentations attentively, give compliments and advice, and above all make sure that you keep the booze coming at a steady pace, and plenty of it.

There is nothing that will reduce your tip faster than making a thirsty patron wait on their drink, especially if they receive it only to find out that it’s mostly mixer. Most people appreciate a stiff pour, and if it’s too stiff, they will almost always mention it politely, ask for a hit of more mix, then thank you for giving too much rather than too little. People like to think they’re getting a good deal, even if that good deal is just a few extra drops of booze.

Consider what music you play carefully. What is your audience? Wild and looking to dance? Quiet and relaxed? Become known for always playing just the right song. Make an extensive list of tunes we all know and love, and take requests. And remember—you can almost never go wrong with Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”, Talking Heads’ “Burning Down the House”, or “Train in Vain” by the Clash.

Flirt—but not overly so. Oftentimes people are going to a bar for no other reason than to get a bit of attention from the opposite sex, and the occasional wink or double-entendre can go a long way. There may be no higher paid bartender than the younger girl who is willing to listen to an older man talk.

As you become an increasingly charming bartender, people will take notice and will mention it to your employer. Customer opinion is everything in the bar industry. If you are liked by your patrons, you will gain better and higher-paying shifts—as long as you can handle the pace. And if you can’t handle the pace, you won’t be liked by your patrons, so it goes hand in hand.

Moving up in the world

Let’s say that you’ve been working at your first bar job for some time, and that you’ve been learning the tricks of the trade and have started working the busy Friday and Saturday nights, and for all practical purposes you have mastered the position. You now have two choices: to stay there or to move on to a potentially more lucrative bar. There really is no wrong decision. If you stay, you have the benefits of an increasingly loyal customer base, the stability of a job where you are trusted, and you are probably making a fairly decent wage. If you go, you have the opportunity to learn new bartending skills, meet new people, and perhaps make more money.

If you decide to seek a better paying bar, you have a couple of options, depending on your personality. If you have a wild side and can work extremely fast, nightclubs can bring in an outstanding amount of tips. On the flip side, if you’re more apt at quiet conversation and a slower pace that provides more personalized service, fine-dining might be the way to go.

Be the life of the party

When working at a nightclub, it is rather easy to increase your tips. Be the fun bartender who won’t shy away from a bit of dancing, flirts without restriction, and shakes a lot of hands and gives a lot of hugs. Tell wild stories and sing along to the music and recommend elaborate drinks that use expensive ingredients. And if a customer can’t decide upon a drink, offer to make one up on the spot. It can be anything, even something that already exists. People like to think they’re receiving special attention.

Pay attention to details

If you end up in fine-dining or in a high class bar of some sorts, it is equally easy to push up your nightly intake. Learn the details about different liquors and beers, such as why they come in certain glasses, fun facts, or dinner pairings. Pay attention to your regular customers and learn their names, what they order, and about their day to day lives. Ask questions about their work, but not too many—they’ve come to the bar to relax.

Be knowledgeable about a wide-range of subjects and capable of discussing them. A lot of the time, a bartender at a higher-end establishment will work at a more relaxed pace and have a lot more time to converse with their customers. In these situations, if you come off as polished, insightful, attentive, and above all pleasant, your tip will reflect your performance.

When it comes right down to it, the ability to increase your tips comes down to your willingness to mirror each customer’s expectations. Whether they’ve come for fun, flirtation, consolation, or relaxation, if you can provide the atmosphere and experience they’re looking for, you will get off work each night with a healthy roll of bills.

The sky is the limit

In terms of top dollar, how much can a bartender make? According to those BLS stats, the highest earners work in bars at colleges, museums, as lessors of real estate, in hotels and on trains, but these make up a very small portion of all working bartenders.

Tending bar at a busy nightclub, I regularly pulled in upwards of three hundred dollars a night, and on many Fridays I took in more than $600. While working at the bar in an upscale mountain resort, I could easily make $50 on a single drink, simply for providing a bit of quality conversation.

The most I ever made was a little over $1,600 in a single day. I was working at a rural tavern where I would usually make around $100 per night, but one weekend there was a music festival held on the edge of town. That Thursday I made $600. Friday, $1,600. Saturday, more than $1,000. I certainly worked for it. Over the course of those three days I didn’t stop moving. It was constant noise and chaos and I was completely drenched in beer all day long. But it was fun and exhilarating, but most of all profitable.

There is plenty of money to be made in bartending, as long as you can learn the game, work fast, say the right things, and always play the perfect song.

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:06pm" rel="nofollow -

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:15pm
oh snap this is insane...didnt know people could do this..

Bartender's $200,000 Tip Not Quite As Great As It Seems (PHOTO)" rel="nofollow -

Posted:   |  Updated: 09/13/2013 10:54 am EDT

So a" rel="nofollow - person claiming to be a St. Louis bartender and server  posted a photo of a $200,000-plus tip to Reddit today (note the bad math):" rel="nofollow">Hosted by

The post quickly rocketed up the site, and you can understand why:


Sadly, it appears the bartender will never receive her lottery-like tip, since some credit card companies apparently don't process excessive tips like this one. The employee" rel="nofollow - told the whole story  on the comment thread (emphasis ours):

I bartend and serve at a restaurant in St. Louis. Today the absolute weirdest thing happened to me, ever. We're pretty slow during lunch shifts. I was working by myself and had literally only had one table the entire shift when about a half hour before close two mid-20s sisters walked in and said another person would be meeting them. I had been bored the entire shift and basically just filling the time with doing mundane cleaning tasks so actual human interaction was pretty exciting. They were pretty nice. One of the sisters was taking the other out after she had gone through a pretty big personal trauma and she obviously wanted to show her sister a good time. They ordered quite a few things and a gentleman met them.

Throughout the meal the sister that was treating the other one would flag me down and talk with me and kept saying things like “Don’t tell my sister how I tip.” “Today I’m your guardian angel.” Etc, etc. I’ve worked in restaurants forever and can tell you from experience that usually people who say things like this are full of sh*t. But she seemed to be tossing a LOT of cash around to her guests and the situation was just bizarre. She asked for the check only a few minutes after we closed (which is super nice and courteous anyway, often we have people walk in right before we close and hang out for ages which forces me to stay later). She signed the receipt (paid with a normal looking Visa debit) after I brought her the check. I don’t like to be rude and look at or pick up the checks before the person has left and since she told me explicitly not to react to the check in front of her sister I especially didn’t want to on this check.

OK, so this is semi-weird, but not, like, full-on freaky, right? Read on:

They leave and I look at the receipt and yeah. $200,000. [Editor's note: KABOOM!!!] Being realistic and not insane I immediately ran to get my manager. He was in a meeting but the corporate office for our entire restaurant is two floors above the restaurant I work at so I ran up there to grab someone and they were empty too. I called the marketing director who I had just seen previously and my manager finally gets back from the meeting he was in and the marketing director and my manager were both as incredulous as I was. They decided to call the credit card processing company. I basically couldn’t function at this point because even though I was pretty suspicious it’s still pretty life changing to even think about getting that kind of money just for being courteous and doing your job.

Here comes the really, really depressing part:

Basically, the gist of it is that banks don’t honor payouts on excessive tips. (Apparently they can bounce back tips that are even over 30% of the bill… which is kind of crazy because I often receive those kind of tips on tabs of regulars or other industry workers.) Although they did say that things like this actually happens pretty often like when someone wins the lottery or a jackpot at the casino, receives a lot of money in a settlement or inheritance, or was already wealthy but terminally ill with little time left. I guess nobody actually ever gets the payout on it. I didn’t even attempt to close out the check for $200,000 obviously so who knows if that kind of money was even in the account. But yeah, it was still a pretty exciting and crazy afternoon. I wish I could get a hold of my “guardian angel” and at least thank her for the entertainment haha. And if it was real, I’d thank her for the sentiment at least. It’d be cool to know why she was possessed to give me of all people that kind of money.

This is the sadness. But other Redditors had a theory -- the excessive tip was not an act of kindness gone wrong," rel="nofollow - but a premeditated scam :

SHE WAS TRYING TO SCAM YOU! Since no one else has said it I thought may as well. The long and the short of it is that you got scammed out of a tip.I used to see this quite frequently when I was an FOH manager. Basically it gets the guest out of paying their bill. If the server were to reconcile their transactions at the end of the night the entire transaction would be flagged and a stop payment would be put in place immediately. If by some miracle the transaction were approved all the cardholder has to do is call in and say its fraud, boom charges reversed. For future reference there is a $25,000 maximum on check cards in the USA unless you have a business account. And people that spend that much on plastic almost always use Amex if not just a regular credit card.


That is a common scam. I used to be a bartender, and every once in a while that would happen. The person just has to put something "impossible" on the bill, and Visa will not process it. Since the amount and the tip are hand-written, it means you had to enter it into the till with the tip amount AFTER the sisters had left. Visa would outright reject it then as almost no one has that much credit. Even if Visa accepted it, the customer would just call later and claim she had been scammed. Visa would annul the entire bill. The only thing you could have done is pointed out her error, which is why she "secretly" and repeatedly kept asking you not to talk to her sister about the tip. That and the fact that she added 200K to 111 dollars and came up with 211K.

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:16pm
Thank you

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:18pm
no prob just being a virgo lol

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:21pm" rel="nofollow - Via Internet: 23 Life Lessons You Get From Working In A Restaurant

23 Life Lessons You Get From Working At A Restaurant
AUG. 1, 2013

1. If you don’t have a thick skin and complete abandonment of political correctness, don’t go near the kitchen. You will immediately learn there that what you consider to be off-limits is just the baseline of someone else’s sense of humor.

2. Bad tippers are the worst kinds of people, and are often terrible in many other ways than just being cheap.

3. Correction, the worst people are those who don’t tip or tip very badly, and accompany their financial insult with a snarky note left on the receipt.

4. The pain of a bad seating chart is a real one, and not a single customer will care or understand that you got slammed while someone else is totally dead.

5. The difference between the people who have never worked in food service, and the people who have, is always clearly visible. And a lot of time it has to do with the basic degree of respect they give to the people who are serving them.

6. Make back-of-house’s life easy, they will make yours easy. Working is always about scratching someone’s back so they’ll scratch yours, and you’d better not break that chain.

7. The only people you’re going to be able to hang out with — and often date — are by default going to be other people in the industry. So you better like the people you work with it, because no one else is going to be coming out with you at 1 AM.

8. There is absolutely zero shame in eating the plate that gets sent back barely-touched because someone either misunderstood what they were ordering or is incredibly fussy about their perfectly-good food. People who will judge you over sh*t like that are people who don’t know the joys of a pristine plate of onion rings coming back to you when you are starving.

9. The most important friend you will make is the one who will cover for you while you eat, crouched next to some appliance in the kitchen. True friendship is about taking the fall so someone can eat.

10. There are a lot of people who are going to look down on you for working a restaurant, and treat you with massive disrespect, and you just have to get over it and remind yourself to never be like that in your own life.

11. If you are good to your server, your experience will be about a thousand times better, and you might even get free stuff if you’re lucky.

12. There is nothing better than a chef who is currently trying out new stuff and has tons of excess food for everyone to try. The best friend anyone can have is a good chef.

13. Line cooks are some of the hardest-working, most humble and honest people in the working world. And many of them happen to be felons. And when you see them get off a 14-hour shift and still manage to make jokes with you at the end of it, you realize that every judgment we make about the guy with neck tattoos is completely off base.

14. If you’re a female waitress/hostess/bartender, some of the more drunk male customers will take it upon themselves to also designate you “professional receiver of gross comments and inappropriate touches.”

15. A good manager is the one who will shut sh*t like that down, because they would rather lose the money from that customer than have someone who mistreats their staff.

16. Even the best establishment can be run into the ground by a petty, spiteful manager.

17. There is no worse an experience on this planet than working a busy brunch shift when you are brutally hungover.

18. If you don’t make friends with the bartender from the get-go, your life is going to be difficult. And you quickly learn that this also applies to the places you don’t work at — treat your bartender well, reap the rewards.

19. The calm before the storm (also known as the rush) is one of the most precious, fleeting moments in life. And as soon as you see that first customer looking at the specials board just a little too long, you know that it’s already over.

20. Never be the person who comes in just as the kitchen’s closing and orders something really complicated. Just don’t be that person.

21. In the best restaurants, you’ll become like a little family, and live through several very important moments together (especially because you don’t get days off for normal, human things such as holidays or birthdays).

22. There will be one item on the menu that you fall in love with so much that you actually start having dreams about it, and go through withdrawal when you don’t have it for a long enough stretch of time. You can actually get that way over, say, a cream of crab soup. It’s like heroin.

23. Going back to a place you used to work and seeing all the old group — and getting to eat and drink all your favorites again — is one of the best feelings you can have. best feelings you can have.

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:25pm

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:27pm

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:30pm
this is funny

"can you give me something with NO calories"LOL

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 6:32pm
"do you have any snacks"

white peopleDead

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 7:00pm
I'm use to dumb ass questions from my job now

My favorites: "what would you get" or "what do people normally get"

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:16pm
what do people normally get lolLOL

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:19pm
Sometimes I just wanna be like "can you stop worrying about me and other people and just order what the fck YOU want. Damn"


Posted By: Mixer
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:21pm
Originally posted by HeyBeautiful18 HeyBeautiful18 wrote:

Research on what?

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:21pm
Go away

Posted By: Mixer
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:22pm

Posted By: Mixer
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:23pm
Originally posted by ModelessDiva ModelessDiva wrote:


That's terrible.LOL

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:26pm" rel="nofollow"> fresh prince gif photo: Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air FreshPrinceOfBel-Air.gif

Posted By: Mixer
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:27pm
What business?

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:28pm
HB you better have fun doing thisLOL sounds so a fan of fun jobs...

It sounds really promising just have to like people...and love talking...

Do you know where exactly you want to work? Specific place?

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:30pm
and when you do get a bartending job i want you to update this thread with all the crazy stories and experiences you have!!

i will be looking out LOL

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:34pm
Lmao, will do!

Posted By: Miss B
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:35pm
I've asked bartenders what their favorite drink to make is....does that make me one of these people? LOL

I don't care. I've gotten some good interesting/obscure drinks. That I don't remember the name of.

Posted By: ModelessDiva
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:37pm
How much does/will school normally cost?

I didnt know there was a such thing as a bartending school until this thread...LOL

shame on me

Posted By: HeyBeautiful18
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 8:59pm
The school I looked at is 495

And 395 if you pay it all up front

Posted By: Marcelo22
Date Posted: May 27 2014 at 9:02pm
dont u make handicrafts? i think u should continue to pursue that

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