If you are considering a career in bartending, one of the first questions you may have is how long is bartending school?

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Bartending school can range from a few days to several months depending on the program you choose.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the different types of bartending schools, what they offer, and how long they typically take to complete.

Types of Bartending Schools

Online Bartending Schools

Online bartending schools offer students the convenience of studying from anywhere, at any time. These programs typically include video tutorials, quizzes, and virtual simulations to teach students how to mix drinks and use equipment. Some online bartending schools even offer job placement assistance after graduation. It is important to research the credibility of an online bartending school before enrolling, as not all programs may be recognized by employers. The website barsmarts.com offers a comprehensive online bartending course that is recognized by industry professionals.

Community College Programs

Many community colleges offer bartending programs as part of their continuing education courses. These programs typically range from a few weeks to a few months in length and may include hands-on training in a simulated bar environment. Community college programs may be more affordable than dedicated bartending schools, but they may not offer the same level of specialized training. It is important to research the course curriculum and instructor qualifications before enrolling in a community college bartending program.

Dedicated Bartending Schools

Dedicated bartending schools offer intensive training programs that can last anywhere from a few days to several months. These programs often include hands-on training with real bar equipment, as well as instruction on topics such as customer service and alcohol laws. Dedicated bartending schools may be more expensive than other types of programs, but they may offer a higher level of specialized training and job placement assistance. The website pbsa.com offers a directory of dedicated bartending schools across the United States.

Type of School Length of Program Pros Cons
Online Bartending Schools Varies – Convenient
– Self-paced
– Job placement assistance
– Not all programs recognized by employers
– Limited hands-on training
Community College Programs Varies – More affordable
– Hands-on training
– Recognized by employers
– May not offer specialized training
– Instructor qualifications may vary
Dedicated Bartending Schools Varies – Specialized training
– Hands-on training
– Job placement assistance
– More expensive
– Limited flexibility in schedule

Length of Bartending School Programs

Are you interested in becoming a bartender and wondering how long it takes to complete bartending school? The length of a bartending school program can vary based on several factors, including the type of program and how often classes are held. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the different types of bartending school programs and their expected length of completion.

Accelerated Programs

Accelerated bartending school programs are designed to be completed quickly, typically within one to two weeks. These programs are intensive and require students to attend classes for several hours each day, often including weekends. While accelerated programs can be challenging, they are an excellent option for those who want to complete their training quickly and start working as a bartender.

Part-Time Programs

Part-time bartending school programs are ideal for those who want to learn bartending skills but cannot commit to a full-time schedule. These programs typically take three to four weeks to complete, with classes held during evenings and weekends. While the length of these programs can vary, they provide students with the flexibility to work or attend school while completing their training.

Full-Time Programs

Full-time bartending school programs are the most comprehensive option, typically taking four to six weeks to complete. These programs require students to attend classes during the day, Monday through Friday. Full-time programs provide students with extensive hands-on training and often include job placement assistance after graduation.

No matter which type of bartending school program you choose, it is important to select a reputable school with experienced instructors. Consider researching online reviews or asking for recommendations from industry professionals to ensure you receive quality training.

Pro Tip: To further enhance your bartending skills, consider attending workshops or continuing education courses after completing bartending school. These courses can help you stay up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques in the industry.

What to Expect from Bartending School

If you’re considering a career as a bartender, attending bartending school can be a great way to learn the skills you need to succeed. But what exactly can you expect from bartending school? Here’s a comprehensive guide to what you’ll learn.

Basic Bartending Techniques

One of the most important things you’ll learn in bartending school is the basics. You’ll learn how to pour drinks properly, how to use the different types of bar tools, and how to prepare garnishes. You’ll also learn about the different types of glassware and how to properly serve each drink.

At bartending school, you’ll also learn about the different types of liquors, wines, and beers. You’ll learn how to properly store and serve each type, and how to make recommendations to customers based on their preferences.

Mixology and Drink Recipes

Another important aspect of bartending school is learning how to mix different types of drinks. You’ll learn how to make classic cocktails like martinis, margaritas, and old fashioneds, as well as more complex drinks like mojitos and mai tais.

You’ll also learn about the different types of ingredients used in cocktails, like bitters, syrups, and liqueurs. You’ll learn how to balance flavors and create your own signature drinks.

Customer Service and Communication Skills

Bartending is more than just mixing drinks – it’s also about providing excellent customer service. In bartending school, you’ll learn how to interact with customers in a friendly and professional manner, how to handle difficult situations, and how to make recommendations based on customer preferences.

You’ll also learn about the importance of communication in the bar industry. You’ll learn how to listen actively to customers and how to communicate effectively with other staff members.

Inventory Management and Bar Operations

In addition to the practical skills of bartending, you’ll also learn about the business side of running a bar. You’ll learn how to manage inventory, how to order supplies, and how to handle cash and credit card transactions. You’ll also learn about bar operations, like how to open and close a bar, how to clean and maintain equipment, and how to ensure compliance with laws and regulations.

Cost of Bartending School

If you’re considering attending bartending school, it’s important to understand the costs associated with it. The total cost of bartending school can vary widely depending on several factors, including geographic location, school reputation, and program length. Here’s a breakdown of the typical costs you can expect to encounter when attending bartending school.

Tuition and Fees

The most significant cost associated with bartending school is tuition and fees. Bartending schools typically charge anywhere from $200 to $800 for a two-week to 12-week program. Some schools may also offer more extensive, six-month programs that can cost several thousand dollars. It’s important to research and compare the costs of different schools in your area to find the best value for your money.

Supplies and Equipment

In addition to tuition and fees, bartending schools may require you to purchase supplies and equipment. This can include textbooks, shakers, strainers, and other tools of the trade. These costs can range from $50 to $300, depending on the school and the program. Some schools may provide these items as part of the program, so be sure to ask about this when researching different schools.

Additional Expenses

Other expenses you may encounter when attending bartending school include transportation, lodging, and food. If you need to travel to attend a program, you’ll need to factor in the cost of transportation and lodging. You may also need to purchase food and drinks while attending the program, which can add up over time.

It’s important to budget for these additional expenses when considering the overall cost of bartending school. While attending bartending school can be a significant investment, it can also be a valuable career move that offers a high return on investment.

Is Bartending School Worth It?

One of the questions that aspiring bartenders often ask is whether or not attending bartending school is worth it. The answer to this question ultimately depends on your personal goals and situation. In this section, we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of attending bartending school to help you make an informed decision.

Advantages of Bartending School

  • Learn the basics: Bartending school provides a solid foundation of knowledge on drink recipes, mixing techniques, and customer service skills that can help you land a job in the industry.
  • Networking opportunities: Attending bartending school can provide you with valuable networking opportunities that can help you secure a job in the industry.
  • Certification: Completing a bartending school program can earn you a certificate that can be included on your resume, demonstrating your commitment to the industry and your willingness to learn.

Disadvantages of Bartending School

  • Cost: Bartending school can be expensive, and the cost may not be worth it if you are unable to secure a job in the industry.
  • No guarantee of employment: Completing a bartending school program does not guarantee that you will be able to secure a job in the industry.
  • Not required: In many cases, bartending school is not required to become a bartender, as many employers prioritize experience over education.

Ultimately, the decision to attend bartending school is a personal one that should be based on your individual goals and situation. If you are interested in pursuing a career in the industry and have the financial resources to attend bartending school, it may be worth considering. However, if you are looking to gain experience and land a job in the industry quickly, attending bartending school may not be the most practical option.


In conclusion, bartending school can be a great way to gain the knowledge and skills needed to pursue a career in bartending. The length of the program will depend on the type of school and the program you choose, but it can range from a few days to several months.

While the cost of bartending school can be a significant investment, it can also pay off in terms of increased job opportunities and higher pay. Ultimately, the decision to attend bartending school will depend on your personal goals and circumstances.

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