Pricing: Mobile Bars vs. Food Trucks

Everyone is familiar with food trucks. From delicious tacos to amazing barbecue, and everything in between, we have been enjoying their fare at our homes, businesses, and festivals for many years. Mobile bars, however, are a fairly new trend sweeping the country. They go hand in hand, both helping to take all the fuss and stress out of planning and executing your event, as well as bringing charm and style. Although they are quite similar, there is a key difference that people should be aware of when looking to get a quote.

Let me first tell you how they are the same. When you hire a food truck you are getting personalized catering on location, with the kitchen, equipment, chef, and staff all brought to you, with the skills and experience necessary to prepare fabulously styled freshly cooked fare for you and your guests. When you hire a mobile bar, you are getting personalized cocktails, made on location, with the whole bar, equipment, bartender/mixologist, and staff all brought to you, with the skills and experience necessary to prepare fabulously styled freshly made cocktails for you and your guests.

Both bring the charm and style of their mobile units. Both are extremely convenient. Both set up and break down and leave you with very little clean up. Both add to the atmosphere of your celebration, impress guests and help create lasting memories.

When planning with a food truck caterer, you decide which foods you would like prepared and let them know how many guests you will be having, as well as the location and times of service for your event. They then calculate how much supply will be needed to properly serve your guests. Yep, you guessed it, replace food with cocktails, and it is the exact same when planning a mobile bar service.

Now to understand the key difference.

When hiring a food truck, one does not expect to pay at cost for the food. Just as in a brick and mortar restaurant, the food is upcharged, so that all actual business costs are covered, as well as creating a reasonable profit for the business owner. I mean, people aren’t in business to make money…said no one…ever. The business costs include the food, supplies, staff, time, skills, insurance, licensing, upkeep and equipment maintenance, rent/storage and more, that are all involved in running a business. Mobile business costs differ from brick and mortar, but they do have them. ALL businesses have this in common. But, back to my point, to put it simply, food trucks sell food.

On the contrary, most mobile bars DO NOT sell alcohol at private events. There is no profit made from it. Unless they have acquired a liquor license for the event, they are not allowed, under Louisiana law, to do so. So how do they stay in business you may ask? How do they cover their business costs and make a profit? They RENT the mobile trailer. This is the MAIN difference between a food truck and a mobile bar. Food trucks do not rent their trucks out, but within their price, as part of their business costs, is the convenience of coming to your location. Mobile bars do not sell alcohol, but price in the convenience and fabulousness of having one at your event by charging you to have it. And make no mistake, it saves you money.

Allow me to break it down for you. On average a 1L bottle of a popular call brand vodka is $26. A regular pour would serve 22 cocktails from this bottle. Adding in only a few dollars to cover the extra costs to make the cocktails, i.e. the mixer, ice, cup, straw, napkin, garnish, etc., that comes out to only $1.27 per drink. That is ACTUAL COST.

Now, for comparison purposes, let’s say that a mobile bar let’s you have the bar for FREE, but is allowed to sell you the alcohol. We will bring you our fabulous bar, NO CHARGE. You only pay for the drinks. The average retail price of a call brand cocktail is, say, $7. Of course, this varies greatly depending on where you live, and where you purchase it. Is it a local dive bar, the airport, or a five star hotel bar? That will make a BIG difference in price. One does pay for convenience, style, sophistication, and atmosphere! However, for our purposes, $7 it is. Now let’s do math. The extra costs are built into the drink price. Multiply $7 ( a pretty good price) by 22 drinks made from the same bottle. Your cost is now $154 per 1L bottle for the same 22 cocktails!

We can put this into a scenario. A party of 50 people for approximately 3 hours would, by standard industry calculations, require about 200 cocktails. This would use 9 1L bottles of alcohol. So, with the above pricing, it would cost you $1,386. This is the cost you would pay for the mobile bar, and the cocktails with call brand alcohol and basic mixers. On top of this, just as with a food truck, delivery, taxes, and staffing charges will be added.

Now, let’s go back to the idea that you don’t get the bar for “free” anymore. We will charge you to rent our bar, $499 for up to 4 hours, but you will pay “actual cost” for your alcohol. Taking into consideration the above, 50 people, 3 hours, with 200 cocktails, your cost would be $751! That is a $635 dollar savings!

So when you see that rental cost on your Geaux Mobile Bar quote, understand , not only are you getting an amazingly unique, cute, and stylish bar for your event, you are being smart with your money!

Click the link below for your quote today!

Choosing Your Wedding Bar

Choosing Your Wedding Bar
We can help you calculate and create the PERFECT bar for your Wedding!

The bar at any event is one of the most popular areas besides the buffet and the dance floor. Actually, maybe more so! It is important to consider what kind of bar you will have, how you will stock it, and who will be behind it!! Unfortunately, this can be challenging and costly to the inexperienced. And it is only one part of the many things to consider when you are getting married.

Couples want to complete their union surrounded by their loved ones and CELEBRATE in a beautiful setting, with delicious food, wine flowing and the dancing non stop! Yet, the cost of doing so has been a little challenging for many even prior to the pandemic rise in prices. Never mind the countless individuals who in the past year and a half, at best, were temporarily out of work, or had their businesses on pause. The average cost of a wedding in the US back in 2020, according to, was $20,300. Louisiana was at $16,842 ($255 per guest).

They break down the most expensive costs for a wedding from most costly to least as follows:


Catering of Food/Drink

Engagement Ring




All of these elements are VITAL to a fabulous wedding.

The liquor is one of the MOST vital and it can be the SECOND highest cost. The average bar cost according to some sites is $20-$25 per guest for alcohol. This can vary greatly.

No one really wants to serve the cheap liquor at their event. Sure, I’d want Chopin Vera Wang or Absolut Cristal for all my friends too. However, choosing only a few top choice liquors for your bar helps cut down costs. There are many amazing brands that people are not aware of that are even more delicious than more widely recognized brands. There are also many local vintners and brewers that carry excellent and affordable products. Of course, if money is no object, then we can suggest many more FABULOUS bottles too! Having a bar service that understands brand, pricing, and budget is a must.

A per head cost is not always the best way to get an estimate for your bar set up. What liquor will they serve, how much will they bring, do they charge by the bottle or per drink? Do you keep the left over bottles or do they?

Next, what type of set up will be best for your event? Having a fully stocked open bar at a large event requires a lot of bottles. It can also create unnecessary lines at the bar! When a guest orders an Old Fashioned, 2 Margaritas, and 6 Kamikaze Shots for their table, it’s going to take more than a minute. Having TOO many choices is not always a good thing! It is important that your guests do not feel like they are missing out on the fun because they had to stand in line most of the time waiting on a cocktail. I can’t tell you how many people have said to me that they enjoyed a wedding they attended, except for the issue of not being able to get a drink! Creating a few “Featured Cocktails” to put on tap is another way to not only save money, but have faster service! We can customize up to 4 Cocktails (or champagne, wine and beer) to be on tap. This is also a fun way to personalize the cocktails for your event. We have had a great time making up names with our clients for their specialty cocktails!

There IS a way to keep your alcohol costs down and STILL have an AMAZING bar set up and service for your wedding, no matter what venue, entertainment, or engagement ring you decide on! Having been a bar proprietor for several years, I have learned how to find the best costs, the best bartenders, and make the best batched cocktails to ensure a memorable and affordable experience for you and your guests!

Renting a bar from Geaux Mobile Bar Co means that you can have the experience of a One of a Kind Bar with excellent service and amazing drinks for what you could pay for the alcohol alone somewhere else! Let us help you design your bar set up and calculate your alcohol needs. You will be glad you did!