In my opinion bartending schools are a no, paying a lot of money for getting the basics is not something you should do.
Instead of paying money for someone to train 10- 20 people and couldn’t offer you specific attention, try finding a job where the bartender can train you one on one.
Bartending courses/schools can be useful but they will not replace experience
Of course there are exceptions, you can go and train in flaring, meet new people, create new connections and sometimes win contests that the schools are putting out.
Use free tools to learn about the basics of this job. First you should check our free course for beginners right here. You can also check YouTube, Udemy has some free bartending courses, you can follow bartenders on TikTok, you can Google “how to be a bartender” and I am sure you will find something!
Again, all this information might overwhelm you in the beginning that is why I am saying practice will help you more. Even if you just make some of the basic drinks at home.
We got you covered there as well. We put together a list of recipes that a bartender should know and you can see it here.
Pros of bartending schools:
- Networking space filled with people that have the same goals, hobbies, vision that you do
- If you are a lazy person that doesn’t want to do research on their own, bartending schools have a curriculum and they will go through all the steps that you need to know to start being a bartender
- Job hunting support
- Gets you a certification
Cons of bartending schools
- Cost time
- Cost money, usually a lot of money
- For a lot of locations and managers their certifications are irrelevant
- It’s not required, you don’t have to do it and because it is something optional, a lot of employers thing the same
- Experience is more relevant
Instead of paying 400$ to 800$ to be in a group and not being able to have one-on-one training, if you really want to follow this path in your life, look for free courses, find a willing bartender to teach you and work together with.
Yes it might be difficult, and a lot of locations will say you don’t have experience so they can’t hire you and in that moment you should tell them in their face that you will not get any experience if they will not give you a chance. It will be hard and frustrating at first.