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If you’re starting a bar, you probably have ideas and plans already for the drinks that you want to serve. But what about where your foot traffic will come from? What about table settings, menu options and last call times? These little details can make or break your business, so before you throw open your doors, here are just a few things to consider when starting your own bar.

1. Location

Is your bar easily seen from the street? Is it located off a busy intersection or squished between unattractive buildings? Is the neighborhood a generally safe place? Try to imagine being a young couple looking for a beer and a good time. Would someone feel comfortable bringing their girlfriend to your establishment?

2. Menu

While liquor can and should be your top priority, you don’t want people drinking on an empty stomach, either. Start with a simple menu that you can expand over time if everything goes well. Make your prices nice and competitive with other bars in the area.

3. Liquor License

This is one of those things that many people forget until the last minute. You can’t operate a bar without a liquor license! The good news is that it’s relatively easy to obtain a TABC permit; you’ll just need to time it right to ensure that you get it before your grand opening.

4. Security

Raunchy crowds are a sign of a successful bar, but you don’t want them to get too out of control, so bouncers are an absolute must. Bouncers can also drive away loiters and drunkards who try to linger on the property without buying more alcohol.

5. Entertainment

There are a number of ways to entertain your bar patrons, including:

  • TVs
  • Darts
  • Pool
  • Karaoke
  • Open mics
  • Live music
  • Air hockey
  • Shuffleboard

Each of these activities will come with their own expenses, so make sure that you calculate their pros and cons before ordering anything online. If the utility bill will be too high with a constantly-running ESPN screen, it isn’t worth buying that 4DTV.

These are just a few details that you won’t want to overlook when starting your own bar. It can be a lucrative business, but you’ll need to be thorough in both ideas and execution, so use these suggestions to hit the ground running.

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