Cool Bar Tricks to Impress Your Friends

What’s better than a nice stiff drink? A free nice stiff drink! And flirting so hard your eyelashes about fall off isn’t the only way to get one.

If you’re with people you’d rather not flirt with you can learn these bar tricks that will make your counterpart groan and admit you did what you said, and that they now owe you a drink.

Keep in mind that these bar tricks are actual tricks, and some need more practice than others. On the same note, they’ll only work on the same person once, so don’t push your luck.

And if you’re doing the trick at a bar you frequent, don’t explain how you did it or you’ll ruin the magic for people in the future!

Success with Bar Tricks

These tricks are best performed for an audience who are already tipsy if not drunk. Intoxicated people are more likely to a. bet against you and b. be amazed by your skills.

Ready to get started? We’ll start with the easiest/silliest first and work up from there.

1. The Coat Trick

No, this isn’t the hat trick, it’s a coat trick involving an actual coat. When you and the person next to you are still wearing jackets at the bar, tell them you bet they “can’t take their coat of by themself”.

When they protest that of course, they can, they’ve been doing it since childhood, ask if they’re willing to bet a drink on it. They’ll agree, thinking they’re about to get a free drink.

Say something along the lines of “ready, set, go,” and when they start taking off their coat, take yours off as well.

You just took off your coats together, which means they didn’t take it off by themself, or alone.

It works because they thought you were betting on their undressing ability, but really you were using clever wording to get a free drink.

Pro Tip: make sure you’re ready to take your jacket off (it’s unzipped, etc.) before you perform this trick.

Since this is such a sly trick, you’re going to have to some convincing that you were right. Stick with it – they did agree, in no uncertain terms, to what you suggested. It’s their fault for not asking for more clarification.

2. The Napkin Tie

This one does take some skill, but not much. All you need to perform it is two working arms, a gullible audience, and a napkin.

First, fold your napkin in a triangle shape on the bar/table in front of you. Then, bet your friends that you can tie the napkin in a knot without ever letting go of either end.

This seems impossible unless you’re quadruple jointed.

When they agree (and you set a free drink as the prize), tell them to watch you closely. Before you pick up the ends of the napkin, cross your arms over your chest.

Then, using your hands (still crossed), pick up the end of each napkin and unfold your arms. It should form a knot smoothly and within the terms of your agreement.

Your friends will groan and then buy you a drink.

3. The Cigarette Trick

If you’re someone that still smokes cigarettes or you spend time around people that do, you’ll love this trick.

Ask to borrow a cigarette and claim that you can bend it in half without breaking it, and if you can’t – you’ll buy them a drink.

If you can, then they have to buy you a drink. It’s simple, right? But How does it work?

All you need is a cigarette and a dollar bill. Take the cigarette and roll it (tightly!) in the dollar bill, starting at the short end.

Once the cigarette is rolled all the way up in the dollar bill, you should be able to bend it in half, touching both short ends of the dollar bill together.

When you unroll the dollar bill, the cigarette will be bent, but not snapped in half.

It has to do with how the bill evenly divides the pressure, but more importantly, it works to get you a free drink!

Speaking of free drinks, did you know bartenders are often given a “shift beer”? If you’re a practiced drinker, consider becoming a bartender. If you’re wondering things like “do bartenders need a license,” click the link to learn more.

4. Olive Another Free Drink, Please

This one is a little complex to explain, but it’s easy enough to do, so stick with us.

All you’ll need for this trick is a regular bar olive, two napkins (paper or cloth, doesn’t matter), and an empty cup.

To trick your friend into buying you a new drink, first set the two napkins about a foot and a half apart.

Then, place an olive on one of the napkins. Bet your friend that you can, only using one hand and your empty glass, move the olive from one napkin to the other.

Preface that you’re not going to touch the napkin or use the cup to scoop (make sure you use the word scoop) the olive.

If you want the trick to be more dramatic, challenge someone else to try this first. Only do this if you’re open to the minimal chance that they miraculously succeed.


Once it’s your turn, take the empty glass, place it over the napkin with the olive on it, and spin the glass around on the tabletop as fast as you can. Continue turning until the centrifugal force (yeah, science!) pulls the olive up into the glass.

Once it’s mid glass or so, quickly pick up the glass and move it to the other napkin. Lift the glass and watch the olive rest on its new home on the other napkin.

If that makes you nervous, pick up the glass, and quickly flip it over, so the opening is facing the ceiling, then flip it back over onto the other napkin.

Make sure you’re careful about when you let the cup go – it won’t be a successful trick if the olive rolls off the napkin.

Proceed With Caution

Seeing as many of these tricks are sly and a little dishonest, it’s not the best to make yourself known for bar tricks. Pull out one every so often and make sure you switch up which trick you do at which bar.

Drunk people are often unpredictable, so only show off if you trust how they’ll react.

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