How Much Does Bartending School Cost?

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$ 10-Hour Course: $150 $ $ 40- to 80-Hour Course: $300-$600

The job of the bartenders is to fill orders for drinks at bars, restaurants, and private catered events.

The work of the bartender requires social skills and friendly disposition; yet, some bartenders work at a service bar in the kitchen while wait staff brings patrons their drinks.

The bartenders are further expected to attend to the business aspects and daily maintenance of the bar.

They often reorder supplies and manage the cash register, and they need to keep the bar clean, and according to the sanitary standards.

Training is not required for bartending; however, training may help students with little experience begin to develop skills in mixing drinks.

Typical Costs

  • The bartending school usually lasts a week or two for the price of less than $600.
  • At the higher end of the cost scale, in Pacific Coast Bartending School in Santa Barbara, for example, the two-week course costs $600.
  • At the lower end of the cost scale, in the Academy of Professional Bartending Westchester, NY, for example, offers a 40-hour course for $295.
  • Shorter and less expensive programs are also offered, such as the two-day 10-hour course at Vermont Bartending School, for example, which costs $149.

What Is Included

  • In general, the training is focused on learning how to mix typical drinks, covering topics like basic drinks and mixing techniques, blended drinks, and shots.
  • Instruction in tapping and pouring beer, and instruction in some basic facts about wine, are usually included in the bartender training.
  • The programs help students improve their speed in mixing drinks and serving customers.
  • Information on liquor laws and managing intoxicated customers can further be part of the class.
  • Some of the programs include assistance in job placement, in the form of a job bank that students can access once they’ve completed the program.

Additional Costs

All materials, including the books, are typically part of the tuition.


Bartending schools generally are not eligible for federal financial aid and don’t offer scholarships.

The payment should be done out-of-pocket.

Shopping For Bartending School

The state-certified schools might have to meet certain requirements, such as allowing partial tuition refunds for withdrawals and offering a complaint process.

The state departments of higher education, like New York State, provide a list of the certified schools.

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