How Many Cases of Drinks to Buy?

How Many Cases of Drinks to Buy

Trying to figure out how many cases of Drinks to buy for your Fundraiser is certainly a huge task to take on – You don’t want too little, and don’t want too much! On average, each guest may drink 2 to 4 drinks, so you can use this number to judge how many drinks to buy.  All of our rolls of Drink Tickets come in rolls of 1000.  We will estimate that 30% of them are beer drinkers, 40% of them are mixed drink drinkers, 10% are wine drinkers, and 20% of them are non-alcoholic drinkers (pop/water) – so let’s say 10% will just drink pop, and 10% will just drink water.

Knowing this will also help you decide how many cups to purchase. Does that help? Of course, this is just a guide and you will know your crowd the best. We strongly advise you to buy MORE than you need, as things are fairly easy to return. Just advise your bartenders NOT to open up everything in the bar, and only open the case when its ready to use.

The Formula

So we have a formula for you! Just follow this formula, and it will help guide you to decide how many drinks to purchase ahead of time. Some people will have 6 drinks, others will have 1. We are using an estimate of 4 per person to simplify things, and encourage you to do the same. It is probably more like 3, but we have inflated it, because is easy drinks if you have got too much, later on.

Beer

Take the number of people expected to come x 0.3 (30% of guests drink beer) x 4 (4 drinks per person) / 24 (number of beers per case) = number of cases of 24 beers to buy. If you are using 3 kinds of beer, take that number and divide it buy 3 so you know how many of each brand of beer to buy (assuming you think people will drink all equally). Change this to 28 if you buy cases of 28.

ie) 150 expected to come x 0.3 = 45 people will drink beer
60 people x 4 drinks each = 180 beers to buy
180 beers / 24 per case = 7.5 cases to buy in total
7.5 cases / 3 brands = 3 cases of 24 beers, of EACH brand to buy

Hard Liquor

Take the number of people expected to come x 0.4 (40% of guests drink beer) x 4 (4 drinks per person) = number of people who will have mixed drinks. Give this number to the LCBO and they will advise you how many bottles of each to get – they are the experts in this area!

ie) 150 people expected x 0.4 = 60 people will drink mixed drinks
60 people x 4 per person = 240 mixed drinks will need to be made
Now give this number to the LCBO and they will direct you on what to buy

Mixers for Hard Liquor

Take number above from Hard Liquor and divide it by the number of mixers you want (usually gingerale, coke, cranberry juice, orange juice) assuming you think it will be equal amounts. So in this case you would divide that number by 4, and this will tell you how many people will be drinking each type of mixer. We will call this “X”. Then look at how many millilitres of mixer would be added to each cup, and multiply that by X, then divide that by how many millilitres are in each bottle/carton. This will tell you how many bottles or cartons to buy of EACH mixer.

ie) 240 (number from above which was how many mixed drinks to be made)
Take that number of 240 / 4 types of mixers = 60 people will be drinking a mixed drink
50ml of mixer will be added to each drink x 60 people = 3000 ml is needed in total of mixers
3000ml needed in total of mixers / 1000 (each bottle has 1000ml) = 3 bottles
So 3 bottles of EACH mixer is what you need to buy

Wine

Take the number of people attending and multiply it by 0.1 (10% of guests will drink wine only) x 4 (4 drinks per person) = number of glasses of wine to pour in total. Assuming that your guests will equally enjoy red and white, divide this number by 2 to find out how many glasses of wine you will need to put for red AND white. You should really just stick with super generic brands that will appeal to the most amount of people. Make sure to have a white AND red option, but don’t have any more than the two to choose from. Buying boxed wine is the easiest to work with, and the cheapest for you in the long run.

ie) 150 people expected to come x 0.1 = 15 people will be wine drinkers
15 people x 4 drinks per person = 60 drinks of wine to be served
60 drinks / 2 types of wine = 30 red to be served, 30 white to be served 
Take this number to the LCBO and they will help you decide which one to get

Pop

Take the number of people expected to come x 0.1 (10% of guests will drink pop only) x 4 (4 drinks per person) = number of cans to buy for people just drinking pop. If you have 3 types of pop, then take that number and divide by 3 and this will tell you how many people will be drinking each kind of pop. Remember to add this number to whatever you got from the previous calculation.

ie) 150 people expected to come x 0.1 = 15 people will drink pop
15 people drinking pop x 4 drinks per person = 60 cans of pop to buy
60 cans of pop / 3 types of pop = 20 cans of each type of pop to buy for people ONLY drinking pop.
This doesn't include the mixers so add that number to this one.

Water

Take the number of people expected to come x 0.1 (10% of guests will drink water bottles only) x 4 (4 drinks per person) = number of bottles to buy for people just drinking pop. Take this number and divide it by how many bottles are in a case, and that is how many cases of water you should buy. We think Costco sells them in cases of 30 which is the best bang for your buck!

ie) 150 people expected to come x 0.1 = 15 people will drink water
15 people drinking water x 4 bottles per person = 60 bottles needed
60 bottles / 30 per case = 2 cases to buy

Buy Extra!

Isn’t math fun?! Confused? Don’t be! It is fairly straight forward, just get your calculator out and take good notes. Now whatever you just learned in this above example, add a few on of each!! If you buy too much, just keep your receipts and return the extra pop cases you bought, or juice cartons you bought. Just ensure that they are still sealed. The LCBO and Beer Store will allow returns under some conditions. The AGCO Website says:

When returning unopened alcohol purchased from a government store, you must produce the permit and a copy of your payment records (e.g. receipts and/or invoices). Check with the retailer at which you purchased the alcohol for further details.

https://www.agco.ca/sites/default/files/sop1575_english_oct2018.pdf

Typically, The Beer Store will allow up to 20% of the beer you purchased to be returned, as long as it is a perforated case (not glued), you have your Special Occasions Permit with you, the seals of the case are not broken, and it is a full case that is unopened. The LCBO will allow returns as long as you have your receipt and it can be a saleable item again (not used).

Also one quick note, is we recommend to have a table near the bar off to the side, which has plastic cups and a jug of water.  That way the bartender won’t be overwhelmed with orders like this, when people can just do this themselves!  Shortens the line a bit and gives them a break.  All you have to do is put someone on water duty to ensure it is always full!

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