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Guest bartends for free at partner's family's wedding, realizes couple made a profit.

Guest bartends for free at partner's family's wedding, realizes couple made a profit.


We've all attended a tacky wedding that somehow still costs a fortune to attend, but the sting burns harder when you realize you're the unpaid intern of the evening...

So, when a frustrated volunteer bartender decided to vent to the gloriously petty and judgmental 'Wedding Shaming' group on Reddit about the tackiest wedding they ever attended, people were ready to pile on the shame.

The only wedding I know that made a profit...

The tackiest wedding I’ve been to. My partner’s brother got engaged at Christmas and decided on an Easter wedding date. No big deal, except he and his wife hadn’t exactly been saving for a wedding (not usual in our culture for parents to pay) and decided on a guest list of 200+.

My partner’s family therefore had to rally around and were responsible for catering the wedding. This meant all the aunties and uncles cooking until the wee hours of the day of the wedding. Her family did not help with this at all. My partner’s parent paid his mums staff from work to act as wait staff.

My partner's siblings paid for the photographer and videographer, suits etc. we had to put in a set sum of money (not asked, but told), which was quite a large amount especially for us having to travel (we lived in another country away from his family - for good reason).

Side drama - 3 weeks before the wedding, partner's grandfather dies suddenly so we had to fork out $$$ for him to travel to another different country for the funeral, this was a massive unexpected cost so he told his brother we couldn’t contribute as much to his wedding and he was pissed.

The day before the wedding, I’m told I am the designated bartender. Fine, whatever as long as I can drink and serve. All family need to go to the school hall (where reception will be) to set up.

I refuse to go because we only arrived in the country the day before, I’m tired and want to rest. Partner goes and gets back very, very late. Apparently bride's family helped to set up but left quite early to go and rest before the big day.

On the day of the wedding, my partner's family has to set up the ceremony, meaning by the time the ceremony starts, his sister and a few cousins who set up miss half of it as they had to go home for a shower (the brothers couldn’t help because they were in the line).

I leave ceremony to go to reception venue to see how my bar is set up. When I arrive, the table chart is in fact an A4 print out given to partner's aunt who is stressing about where to sit 200+ people when the tables were not in any logical order and seats not labeled. I stop to help her direct traffic as everyone comes pouring in.

My bar is actually a table in the back corner of the hall. There are a couple bags of ice for boxes and boxes of beer and wine. Some genius put all the red wine on ice and left the beer and white wine out, so it is all nicely warm.

I have to drive out to buy more ice and fix everything up. There is no bottle opener and of course no twist top beer bottles, so I had to use spoon as a makeshift opener.

I am also told that no alcohol is to be served until a certain point in speeches (about 2 hours after reception starts). In the meantime, I have 2 2 litre bottles or juice and 5-6 bottles of coke and sprite for 200 guests. It lasted about 5 minutes. I had to go to the supermarket to buy drink mix-up sachets (these are 20c each) and mix these in front of all of the guests.

There is no food or snacks or anything for the guests waiting for the bridal party to arrive (which took about 2 hours). So people are hungry and thirsty because it was hot as hell. In the end, I got so drunk with my sister in law because the wedding was so sh*t and we were treated like slaves. We didn’t even get to eat because as the help, we were last on the table list and there was literally no food left by then.

At the end of the night, because I wasn’t allowed to serve drinks until so late, not many were drinking and there was a ridiculous amount of booze left. I ended up handing out cases of wine and beer to anyone and everyone, and there was still enough left for the next two months of parties.

As family, we also had to clean up the hall and do the dishes (not the brides family though, the lazy sods did nothing to help at all and simply left).

A final slap in the face was my partner's family had prepared an awesome musical item (very talented musical family) which they practiced for months - and they got to play it while clean up was going on and pretty much every guest except those helping had left.

Bonus? They actually made several thousands of dollars profit on the wedding from the 200+ guests who turned up

Cutting costs by asking loved ones to use their skills and help out is normal, but forcing people to work full bartending, catering, and day-of coordinator shifts without any of the proper tools? These people are evil geniuses.

Of course, the jury of internet strangers was dying to roast this disaster. Here's what people had to say to cheer up this bartender...

KiraiEclipse said:

Been in several weddings were the wedding party is the set up and clean up crew. I have no problem with it. It's just like hosting any other party with your friends. Plus, I love decorating spaces.

However, we never paid for the event, no one was forced to help if they were feeling tired or sick or stressed because they had other obligations, we were never used as waiters or bar staff (meaning we got to relax and enjoy the party), it was never just one side contributing (like the groom's side here), and the couple made sure, with both words and gifts, that we knew how appreciated we were.

That's something that really struck me with this story. Not once did OP ever mention the couple apologizing for not being prepared or thanking everyone who helped out. It sounds like they knew exactly what they were doing and got exactly what they wanted.

looneybinguard said:

It sounds like the bride's family put up boundaries and wouldn’t let the couple cross them. Good for them. The moment I was told the amount of money I needed to fork over would have been my decline to the wedding. What a bunch of entitled oblivious fools.

Moonmold said:

I WANTED to say 'at least you got drunk' until you said you didn't even get to EAT and you had to clean everything up...

WookProblems said:

If I showed up to a wedding, and there was no food or drinks, I would be taking my gift back and leaving. Idc if it sounds petty, at least try to make it look like it isnt a blatant cash grab.


I've had similar (less extreme) experiences with family weddings. Like our side of the family was told that the young couple needed help with the wedding, so we all got ready early to help.

We thought both sides of the family were coming to help decorate and serve food, turns out we were the only ones asked to help. And they asked the aunts to cook/ serve the day of. Her family was rude and one of them snapped at my mom when one of the dishes ran out, and my mom said 'I'm not a caterer, I'm (cousin's) aunt.'

The lady was embarrassed but not embarrassed enough to help clean up after. Our family cleaned up, accepted that different family dynamics happen, and pretty much no one has spoken to that cousin or his wife since.

sosovain616 said:

Idk who’s the worst in this story... the newlyweds for being total pieces of shit for doing this to their family instead of saving money for their dream wedding, or the grooms family for allowing themselves to be treated this way. It’s one thing to ask family to help out, but this is way beyond that. They were treated like doormats and did nothing to stop it.

So, there you have it!

Everyone agreed unanimously here that the groom's family should've stood up for themselves a little more here as it seems they were beautifully bamboozled. Still, making a profit off of your wedding by refusing to pay a single vendor and using your entire family as a staff is definitely not a classy move. Better luck at the next wedding, team!

Sources: Reddit
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