Wedding Alcohol Basics

There’s nothing like alcohol to get your wedding guests in the mood for merriment and celebration. But do you know how to stock up on tipple that your guests are sure to enjoy?


Getting your drinks

All hotels and banquet halls in Singapore offer a choice of wine, champagne or beer, while hard liquor may also be provided upon special request. If you are hiring a caterer who is not affiliated with your wedding venue, ask whether they can provide your alcohol. Another option for you is to get your drinks directly from an established vendor. Compare the prices for each of your options and see which one has the best selections (i.e. has the kind of drinks your guests prefer). Testimonials from previous newly wed couples will also help you discern which vendor to go with.

Generally, you will get the best discount if you get your drinks directly from a vendor – especially if you buy wholesale – but take note that you may still have to pay extra for delivery and corkage. If you’re getting your drinks from your venue or from your caterer, inquire whether the drinks come in a package or whether they’re priced per bottle as there may be a big difference between the total prices of the two. You should also ask what will happen to leftover bottles – do you get to keep them, or will they be refunded upon return?

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Matching your budget

You can greatly cut down the cost of your drinks if you hold your reception at a private venue (although this will be quite a challenge here in Singapore). This way you won’t have to pay corkage and carting the drinks will be easier. One way to reduce your bill, if you’re celebrating at a hotel or restaurant, is to serve the venue’s own brand of liquor or beer and the house’s wines and champagne as these are sold at a lower price than premium brands. Another tip: instruct your servers to wait until they are asked to refill your guests’ glasses rather than refilling the glasses as soon as they’re empty.

If, however, you have a big budget, then you can treat your guests to an open bar where they’ll have unlimited access to a wide selection of drinks throughout the entire reception. A variation of the open bar is the “soft” bar, which has a more limited choice of drinks (generally without any hard liquor), and the “limited” bar, where you would only pay for up to a certain amount of drinks (once this is consumed, the drinks become up for sale to your guests). Whatever you decide on, make sure to inform your guests about it through your DJ or emcee.

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Quantity and type of beverages

On average, each guest will drink about one glass per hour, and it’s safe to assume that that will be the case in your reception, unless your guests are known to be heavy drinkers. Because you know your guests best, it will be up to you to decide what to serve. However, for most weddings in Singapore, it’s advised to have at least a few bottles of hard liquor (vodka, gin and scotch seems to be the most favored), 2-3 cases of light and dark beer, 4-6 cases of red and white wine, and a few bottles of champagne. Also make sure that you have plenty of bottled water and soft drinks. If you want to style up reception, you can also serve classic drinks like strawberry daiquiris, campari and chardonnay or trendier drinks like Chambord and limoncello.

For wedding wine and alcohol providers in Singapore, view our recommended Wedding Wine and Spirit Merchants.

Photo by Annabel Law Productions

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