The cost of food just keeps increasing, and it doesn’t make catering your wedding any cheaper. Stay organized and make sure to have catering among your wedding planning checklists. Depending on your guest list, your plans for catering may be shockingly expensive. However, there are some great ways to trim costs and save your catering budget.
1. Play The Field
Don’t settle on the first caterer you talk to. Make the most of your catering budget by interviewing a variety of caterers. Meet with them for tastings and talk to them about your budget. Ask them for the best spread they’ll offer that won’t blow your budget.
2. Stick To Seasonal Offerings
Your catering budget will stretch a lot further if you stick to seasonal and local foods. A good caterer will be able to supply a large variety of locally-sourced, in-season dishes for your reception can advise you about which dishes would work best for your needs and your budget.
3. Bulk Up
If your caterer will be working another wedding either immediately before or after yours, and they’re having a particular dish that you like, you may be able to get the same dish a bit cheaper if your caterer gets a bulk discount on ingredients. If you pair up with another of the caterer’s weddings and choose many of the same dishes they are having, the savings could be substantial.
4. Keep It Simple
Surprising your guests with a cold soup that looks vaguely like mucus and has an unpronounceable name is no way to have the fun reception of which you’re dreaming. Keep your catering choices simple and recognizable. You can ask your caterer to be a little creative with your main dishes or appetizers, but don’t go too far. Besides, all those exotic, fancy dishes with names no one can pronounce are more expensive than more traditional fare. Simpler dishes cost less and will keep your catering budget from bursting at the seams.
5. Make Use Of Inside Catering
Depending on your venue, you may be required to use their inside caterer, or it may just be an offered service that you or may not take advantage of. However, inside caterers may offer a discounted price for booking through the venue. It’s still important to have a tasting; just because an inside caterer is available doesn’t mean they make food that’s worth eating.
6. Sticking With The Basics
If none of the above tips have worked to save your catering budget, it’s time to bring out the big guns. Start trimming everything that isn’t necessary and doesn’t ask for any extras. Don’t be afraid to ask your caterer for any tips they may have on helping you save money. You might be surprised at the suggestions they have for you.
Don’t forget that your guests are there to help you celebrate. Your choices for catering will only be a small part of your big day, so don’t break the bank on food.
Simple Guide To Selecting A Wedding Caterer
Every decision you make about your wedding comes only after you’ve winnowed down hundreds of options into a single choice. The same is true of choosing a wedding caterer. There are literally hundreds of different styles and types of catering businesses to choose from for your wedding. Making a careful choice for your wedding caterer will help your wedding go more smoothly, making your whole theme more cohesive from the beginning of the ceremony through the end of the reception.
1. Decide On Your Style
Your style, both individually and as a couple, should determine the overall feel and ambiance of your wedding. Whether you go with a fully catered and served meal, a buffet of finger foods or some other option, your chosen caterer should be able to give you a good idea of what to expect during your reception. If you’re not very traditional or interested in a black-tie ambiance, it’s important that your caterer knows that. The single most important consideration for choosing a caterer is the quality of their food and service, but having a caterer who matches your overall style is nearly as important.
2. Tips For Tastings
When choosing a wedding caterer, one of the things you’ll do is schedule a tasting where the caterer provides samples of their offerings. If you can have an idea of the menu pricing before you go in, you can keep a rough tally of what everything costs while you’re tasting, enabling you to decide whether you really enjoy it, or want to cut it from the list.
If your ceremony is somewhere outside the caterer’s immediate area, make sure you ask them if they’re willing to travel. If you forget this, you may find yourself without food or with a great big additional fee on your wedding day.
The caterer may offer foods you are unfamiliar with, but make sure you try a bit of everything. It’s nearly impossible to predict when some new taste will suddenly strike your fancy, so give yourself the chance to be open to new things.
Don’t overdo the tasting. One wedding caterer may only offer small bite-sized portions of their wares, while others present you with a full serving. Don’t overindulge because you’ll get tired and be ready to fall asleep, instead of alert and ready to make informed decisions about your wedding.
Ensure that your prospective wedding caterer has the ability to make substitutions for vegan/vegetarian guests or guests that abstain from red meat and has the ability to avoid food allergies if necessary.
3. Choosing Wisely
Your wedding caterer can either make or break your wedding reception. For this reason, it’s very important to make an informed and educated decision about your wedding caterer. Doing a bit of research and being attentive to reviews for your prospective caterer will help you avoid the horror of bad catering.