How Much Do Bartenders Make? – Must Know About

A bartender is a service professional who formulates and serves alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. This article will teach you about the bartenders’ earnings, responsibilities, and other vital information.

A bartender is someone who mixes and serves drinks to customers, either directly to customers at the bar or through the waiters and waitresses who place drink orders for dining room customers. Bartenders have to know a wide range of drink recipes and are able to mix drinks accurately, quickly, and without waste. They work in restaurants, clubs, bars, hotels, and other food service establishments. Some establishments, bustling establishments with many customers, use equipment that automatically measures, pours, and mixes drinks at the push of a button.

However, bartenders who use this equipment must still work quickly to handle many drink orders and be familiar with the ingredients for special drink requests. Some establishments may also use carbonated beverage dispensers, cocktail shakers or accessories, mist or trigger sprayers, commercial sustainers, and ice shaver machines. To further know the details about how much bartenders make, follow this article.

Who are bartenders?

A bartender is a person who formulates and serves alcoholic and soft drink beverages behind the bar, usually in a licensed establishment. Bartenders also usually maintain the supplies and products for the bar. A bartender is able to generally mix classic cocktails such as Cosmopolitan, Old Fashioned, Manhattan, and Mojito. Whenever you go to a bar, restaurant, hotel, or club, you will be in need of someone to serve you drinks in a comfortable and relaxing setting. If you are interested in choosing bartending as a career, it will be an excellent career.

A bartender is known by many other names, such as an alcohol server, bar chef, mixologist, and barkeeper, to name a few. A bartender is any individual who prepares or serves alcoholic and some non-alcoholic beverages from behind a bar. They can efficiently work in any licensed establishment, including a “bar” and restaurants, taverns, hotels, casinos, and other locations. A bartender may also have other tasks to do, such as serving food, taking inventory, and providing general customer service.

Furthermore, bartenders are also responsible for confirming that customers meet the legal drinking age requirements before serving them alcoholic beverages. Usually, 60.3% of all bartenders are women, while 39.7% are men. The average age of a bartender is 33 years old. The most common ethnicity of bartenders is white, 70.6%, followed by Hispanic or Latino, 16.8%, and Black or African American, 5.3%. A good bartender possesses a positive attitude while dealing with customers. Another quality of a good bartender is his willingness to give their best and constantly learn new skills.

In addition, a good bartender will possess personality, confidence, and attitude but always have respect for customers, fellow staff, and their venue.

What do bartenders do?

Bartenders work with customers by mixing and serving drink orders. Their responsibilities include verifying age requirements, knowing alcohol pairing and tastes, knowing how to make traditional and classy drinks, managing inventory, processing payments, and cleaning bar supplies. A bartender greets customers, informs them about daily specials, and gives them menus. They are responsible for taking orders, pouring wine, and serving draft or bottled beer and other alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks.

Bartenders mix drinks according to recipes and check the identification of customers to ensure they are of legal drinking age. Moreover, they operate cash registers, collect customer payments and return change. Bartenders work on their feet for a long time. Many of them lift heavy cases of liquor, beer, or other bar supplies. Some bartenders are responsible for cleaning bars, tables, and work areas. Their essential role is managing bar operations and ordering primary liquor and bar supplies.


In some busy establishments with a large number of customers, equipment is used that automatically measures, pours, and mixes drinks at the push of a button. Bartenders who use this equipment must work quickly to handle a large number of drink orders and be familiar with the ingredients for special drink requests. In addition to mixing and serving drinks, bartenders reserve and prepare garnishes for drinks and maintain an adequate supply of ice and other bar supplies. They also may wash glassware and silverware and serve food to customers who eat at the bar. They are responsible for ordering and maintaining an inventory of liquor, mixes, and other bar supplies.

Some bartenders often drink orders for waiters and waitresses who are serving dining room customers. Consequently, bartenders must work well with their colleagues to ensure that customers receive prompt service.

How much do bartenders make in tips a night?

Choosing a bartender’s career is an excellent choice. You will be surprised to know that, on average, bartenders can expect to make about $250 a night with tips included. This number can vary significantly based on a number of factors. If you are good at your job and can serve the drinks every bartender should know, you can make even more money in tips and make the other bartenders jealous. In another case, on a slow night, the bartender will make as low as $40. But on good nights, you usually bring in around $200-$250.

Occasionally, you can have an amazing night and bring in upwards of $500. The primary thing that differentiates middle-class bars from lower-class bars is that you will have more “good nights” more often. There are some states where bartenders can earn a handsome amount of money. The states and district that pay bartenders the highest mean salary is Arizona ($41,810), New York ($40,460), Hawaii ($60,380), and the District of Columbia ($54,320), and Washington ($40,910).

Bartending can be a fortune. It’s a temporary job where people can make the income needed to survive, while other sharp people turn it into a solid career and make massive money. In 2019, the median earnings in the US were $31,100. This is about $5,000 higher than the median bartender salary, which does not include tips. Usually, male bartenders consistently make more money in tips than female servers, which seems almost counterintuitive.

How much do bartenders make an hour without tips?

Excluding tips, bartenders make an average of $12.55 per hour. Given the annual numbers combined with the fact that bartender duties take an average of 40 hours per week, this number shows a national average and may vary state by state, city, and bar size. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a bartender’s average hourly rate, including the tips, is around $13.90 ($28,910 per year), and the top earners are making $22.93 an hour ($47,690 per year) as of 2020 (the most updated year on record.

On the other side, bartending is a job replete with stress. Bartenders work in an evident, pressure-packed environment. They must simultaneously fulfill management’s expectations and satisfy customers’ demands. When the operation gets engaged, your bartenders are routinely hard-pressed, given far more work than time to complete it.

How much do bartenders make in an hour?

Bartenders make good money precisely when tips are involved. The average hourly earnings of bartenders in the United States is $11 as of May 2022. The range can typically fall between $10 and $13. The hourly rate can vary widely depending on many important factors, including certification, education, additional skills, and the number of years you have spent in your profession. Check out the table below for how much bartenders make along with the states, experiences, with or without tips, and states.

Experience Average salary/hour Yearly Country
Beginner $13.90 (Inc tips) $19,620/year United States
1-2 years $14.07 $24,960/year United States
3-5 years $16.02        ——— United States
7-10 years $17.51        ——— United States
Top earners $22.93 $32,130/year United States

How much do bartenders make at a club?

The estimated total wage for a nightclub bartender is $60,357 annually in the United States, with an average salary of $37,455 per year. These numbers define the median, which is the midpoint of the ranges from the proprietary total pay estimate model. The calculated additional pay is $22,902 per year. Additional income could include a cash bonus, commission, tips, and profit-sharing. The most likely range represents values that exist within the 25th and 75th percentile of all pay data available for this position.

The average wage for a Las Vegas bartender varies from $18,588 to $27,673 without tips figured in. However, if you include the amount that can be made in tips, the salary raises from $45,000 to $73,000 or even more.

Types of bartenders

Usually, bartenders are grouped into one category. Particularly when it comes to providing tools for bartenders, all of these professionals of different skill levels and interests are generally addressed as one. There are at least different types of bartenders. A few of them are mentioned below:

The publican

He is the bartender that works in a pub. The pub is where most bartenders start their careers. They learn how to pull pints, glasses of wine, and the occasional spirit but mainly serve a lot of packaged and ready-to-go drinks, such as bottles of beer and cider. The pub is a local and friendly area. Often, you will have the same faces coming in and out, with a few travelers popping up along the way. Whoever graces your doorstep, the way of the publican is typically the same.

A pub bartender will have a ‘good chat.’ In other words, they are generally quite conversationalist, with friendly faces ready to serve you anything from a pina colada to an Irish coffee. Naturally, this bartender is about getting you what you want with no messing about, drip trays are a big help to the bartender as more pints of lager, ale, and cider are some popular drinks of pub-goers.

The speed tender

The speed-tender bartenders work in the busiest of bars on those Friday and Saturday nights. Generally, as opposed to pubs, these places will often be kitted out with plenty of tables, some outside space, and almost certainly a dance floor and DJ. The game’s name for the ‘speed tender’ is to get as many drinks out as quickly as possible. While still ensuring the customers are happy and they are not overpouring the bar’s bottom line away. You won’t be hanging about having a conversation with this bartender. They will just want to understand everything you want from the moment they look at you to indicate it is your turn.

Speed tenders do not want you adding on extra drinks every time they return to severe you the ones you asked for initially. Spirits and cocktails are the big favorites at these bars. Guests tend to avoid pints and bottles as the potency is slighter, meaning they have to return and queue at the busy bar more often. Consequently, speed tenders must be the master of the pour. Generally, these bars will approach this in two ways, control and training.

The control method employs world-famous spirit measures that ensure your bartender never over pours. The second method is training. Using tools such as pro pour, you can train your bartenders to free pour a 25 ml or 50 ml shot.

Cocktail bartenders or mixologists

The cocktail bartenders or mixologists are of a completely different caliber to the publican bartenders or the speed tender. These bartenders are generally those that take the profession of bartending most seriously. Treating every drink like a cook treats a dish, the cocktail bartender will take their time with your drink, giving it a more hand-crafted feeling. The service typically tends to be of a higher class, involving a light chat, a fair amount of elaboration in the drinks-making process, and a small amount of raft flair to demonstrate skill and capability.

The cocktail bar is about developing an atmosphere and an experience for the guest, and the bartender understands this. Therefore, everything will have been carefully considered and chosen to reflect the mood and atmosphere the bar enjoys creating. The flair bartender is very similar to the cocktail bartender and can often be the same. The party bar or fun bar is all about bravado. They may have people dancing on tables and promoters out the front to drag in relievers and holiday markers. The style and class of this bar can vary hugely depending usually on where it is.

How much do bartenders make a month?

Bartenders’ salaries vary from state to state, city to city, venue to venue and shift to shift. It also depends on how good a bartender you are and how much experience you have. As a newbie, taking in a ton of tips can be tricky until you have developed the necessary confidence and skills. Lower-class bars are the venue where you will make the least amount of tips in. These include dive bars and lower-class restaurants. On a quiet night, a bartender may not make any tips. But slow nights will usually bring them at least $40. On a good night, there is a chance to make upwards of $200. But it’s about as high as things go.

Middle-class bars include sports bars, well-attended dance and music venues, decent restaurants, and lovely pubs. On a slow night, the bartender will be able to make as low as $40. But on good nights, you usually bring around $200-$250. Occasionally, you can have a really good night and make upwards of $500. The main difference between middle-class and lower-class bars is that you will often have more good nights.

The upper-class bars include high-volume and high-end nightclubs, fine dining restaurants, and specialty bars such as cocktail bars, gin bars, whiskey bars, etc. Bartenders in these venues make a tremendous amount of money. A slow night for these bartenders will make them no less than $150, and good nights will make them earn $400-$600.

How much do bartenders make a night?

On average, bartenders can expect to earn about $250 a night with tips. This number can vary signific antly based on a number of factors. If you are good at your job and can serve the drinks every bartender should know, you can make even more money in tips. On slow nights, bartenders can earn as low as $40, but on good nights, they usually bring in around $200-$250. Occasionally you can have a really good night and bring in upwards of $500.


The main thing differentiating middle-class bars from lower-class bars is that you will have more good nights more often when you earn a handsome amount.

Is bartending a promising career?

Bartending can be a terrific job and an excellent fit for some people. While for others, it can be a gigantic mistake. Before picking bartending as a career path, or even a job, you plan to do it for a little while before moving on to something else. You should consider a few things. Many people think bartending is an effortless job and that you will just be hanging out at the bar all day. While it’s true that it’s a social job with a lot of fun aspects, it’s also hard work, both physically and mentally. You will have to be on your feet all day and deal with many people who all want your attention, and you will constantly be on the go.

Although bartending is a hardworking job, it is a promising career. Bartenders earn an outstanding amount. The average salary for a bartender is $15.22 per hour in the United States and $170 for tips per day. If you are lucky enough to get a job in a higher-class bar, a slow night for you being a bartender will make you no less than $150, and good nights will make you earn $400-$600.

When bars get busy, bartending becomes stressful. The ability to multitask without forgetting something is a must. Make sure that this is something that you are cut out for before you begin bartending. You will have to spend your time with a lot of drunk people, and regardless of what you think of them, you will have to be nice to them. There are bouncers to help you out when you get in trouble, but you are really going to need to learn to put up with some not-so-fun stuff from people if you are going to be good at bartending.

You need to be able to set boundaries. You should be nice to people, but we are careful not to be too nice. People frequently hit on bartenders, and getting romantically involved with customers is almost always wrong. Suppose you are not good at setting social boundaries; you should probably not choose this as a career.


It will be an excellent idea if you are considering bartending as a career. Bartenders earn a massive amount of money with the benefit of tips and social interaction. It’s a bit tricky working a job that requires your physical and mental energy. But if you are enthusiastic and passionate about practicing new skills and earning money, you are a perfect fit for this job. Remember to set the limits and boundaries with your customers and deal with them gently. It can be challenging initially, but you will get used to it over time.


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