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Elite Wedding Tips
​Step #1: Selecting a Venue

Selecting a venue should be step #1. Venue selection is the most important choice. Discuss your budget before visiting facilities; as this will pave the way for all other decisions. Upon reviewing the finances, you will already be faced with your first choice: all-inclusive venues vs selecting outside vendors. 

All-inclusive vs. outside vendors… and its effect on you.
Event venues will wow you with their layout, selections, and sheer beauty. All-inclusive event venues can be truly magnificent places. It is important to remember, you have the power to replicate this atmosphere all on your own. You can transform any location with some unique decorating ideas, strategic party rentals, and a decorative eye. 

Alcohol and Beverages
Selecting alcohol packages from an all-inclusive venue is generally 5-10 times higher than purchasing it yourself. By selecting a venue allowing outside vendors, the typical wedding will save an average of 4-7 thousand dollars just on the bar. Select a venue that allows the client to purchase the beverages supplies and hire a bartender to serve it.

For example: An occasion for 150 guests may cost nine hundred dollars to purchase beverages yourself. All-inclusive venues will charge 5k-10k for the exact same quality and selection!

If you're wealthy and your time is extremely valuable, this may be a matter of convenience for you. However, 99% of us are on a budget. Setting aside a few hours to purchase the beverages (in our opinion) is worth saving five to ten thousand dollars.

If you selected a venue hall that allows outside vendors; congratulations! You just saved yourself anywhere from five to twenty thousand dollars. You've made the right choice; now we'll give you some strategic tips for vendor selection.

Vendor Selection Tips

Staff- Keep catering and bartenders separate. 
Even the most professional catering companies in Jacksonville will tell you their focus (and love) is the culinary arts. The catering companies will offer discounted bartenders which may equal inexperienced staff serving your drinks. What does this mean? Lines at the bar, lack of drink knowledge, and inexperienced staff. Hire a professional bartender company. They should providing professional bartenders, consulting for beverage purchasing, bar placement, alcohol ratios, calculators, Liquor Liability insurance, and more. There's a surprising science behind every bar detail. 

Stay away from third party vendor sites
Third party vendor advertising platforms or listing services- What are these? Think "Kayak" but for wedding or party vendors. It's a brilliant idea, but the market is not yet a consolidation of experienced professionals. Any "GIG website" offers a mix of pros and inexperienced services. What's the downside for the client? Third party vendor sites make no attempt to verify insurance, professionalism, or experience. We can't blame them, because understandably their business model is based on advertising revenue. You'll have a mixture of 2 extremes, professional and fly by night. The problem is: you don't know who's who. A good way filter: Do they have a website? Are they local? Do they send a professional quote with a clear outline of services? Do they have references if I ask? Is the company insured? A "yes" to all questions will lead to a streamline process for the clients. With these qualifications, you should receive professional service and a memorable time for your guests. 

Cost vs Quality
Price is generally paired with professionalism and organization. The good news is, it’s easy to find an organized company to fit your budget when armed with the right information. Here are a couple of ways to determine if they fit your needs:
1.Interview them over the phone. 
2.Can they answer all of your questions with detailed and informative answers? 
3.Do they offer suggestions based experiences and past occasions?  

Summary
We hope this has been an informative article for you. We encourage you to use Elite as a resource for advice and information; regardless of your professional staff selection. Elite Private Bartenders are here to help. We wish you all the best on your special day.

The article is written based on the experiences and opinions of a private bartender company. 

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