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How to Get a Free Drink from a Bartender

Everyone likes free things, and everyone likes drinking. Combine the two and you've got one happy hour.


  • Step 1: Never ask for a freebie Never ask for a freebie. It doesn’t work, and since most bartenders have good memories, you’ll always be known as the cheapskate.
  • Step 2: Be polite Be polite. Not bothering to say 'please' and 'thank you' drastically decreases your chances of a free drink.
  • TIP: If the bartender is really tied up, don’t bug him. Waiting patiently is another way to get into his good graces.
  • Step 3: Be fun & engaging When ordering, be fun and engaging. If you’re memorable (in a positive way!), chances are your wit will be rewarded.
  • TIP: Keep a smile on your face—even when you’re annoyed at being unable to catch the bartender’s attention.
  • Step 4: Compliment your bartender Compliment your bartender. Flattery works!
  • Step 5: Don't expect a freebie Don’t behave like you’re expecting a freebie. Always have your money in hand, ready to pay.
  • TIP: Never tip less than a dollar, and round up larger tips to whole-dollar amounts. Bartenders hate dealing with small change.
  • Step 6: Tip generously Tip generously. Bartenders remember the biggest—and the smallest—tips. You take care of him, and he’ll take care of you.
  • FACT: The word 'tip,' which originated in 17th-century England, is an abbreviation of the phrase, 'to insure promptness.'

You Will Need

  • No expectations
  • A smile on your face
  • Basic common courtesy
  • And some money

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