How to Become a Bartender

To become a bartender you need an affinity for the hospitality industry. This is one of the most intensive customer service jobs in a customer oriented industry. 

Education and training

Bar training is conducted by vocational colleges. There are no entry requirements for hospitality training, but the standards for entry to the industry are often high, particularly in upmarket businesses.Bartender training involves:

Mixing drinks:
Cocktails, aperitifs, basic spirits mixes, and learning the measures of drinks.

Equipment operations:
Beer taps, mixers, and other equipment.

Customer service:
The bar tending business is based on customer service, and employers demand high standards. The course teaches students the industry standard customer service techniques.

Hygiene and sanitation:
Essential practices, and required training due to legal requirements for operation of public premises.

Glassware
: Drink glassware varies considerably, students are taught their use in formal settings and for specific drinks.

Working with pressure situations
: Students are taught how to deal with difficult situations, and the issues that bar tending may involve.

Some of these courses come with placement opportunities, or other forms of incentive. If you're thinking of becoming a bartender, however, the real need is for good vision of your career options. Bartenders can become senior hospitality industry staff, trainers, managers, and supervisors. These are excellent jobs in the industry, and can lead to further promotions.

Employment options


The quality of jobs is often an issue in bar tending careers. Bart ending work can require working in difficult conditions for long hours. It's recommended that you evaluate any place of employment before application. A poorly operated or unclean establishment should be avoided.

The best bar tending jobs are easy to recognize. They have:

  • Very good quality, clean premises
  • Modern facilities and patron amenities
  • Friendly, relaxed staff who are obviously competent
  • Very high quality service

As an experienced bartender, you will have considerable job mobility, and should be able to find good quality jobs and opportunities for advancement. Areas of employment include: 

  • Hotels
  • Clubs
  • Restaurants
  • Casinos
  • Tourist resorts

Licensing issues and good practice

Some courses provide certification, but in practice the real issue is licensing required for people employed in the liquor industry. Many US states require servers of alcohol to attend an "alcohol server training course". The best option is to look for a course that will provide both certification and meet licensing requirements.

These licensing issues should also be considered as essential training for good bartenders. They provide training in areas of alcohol service which are also laws affecting liquor establishments:

Protection from legal liability

  • Effects of alcohol
  • Recognizing and dealing with effects of alcohol on customers
  • Preventing intoxication
  • How to respond and withhold service from an intoxicated customer
  • Checking IDs and dealing with minors trying to buy liquor
  • Use of incident logs to record legally relevant events

The laws regarding alcohol are a result of serious issues created in people's lives by alcohol addiction and abuse. These are very serious social issues, causing much suffering in people's lives. The bartender's job is a highly responsible job requiring a lot of knowledge of the industry, the market, and the clientele. Bartenders act in the best interests of their employers and their clients by upholding the standards of good service, as well as the law.