Fuck caterers.

posted 3 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
Member
546 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

I so hear you! I told one caterer my budget for a 30 person reception dinner. She wouldn’t quote me until I told her what kind of reception. I want a family style dinner for 30 people, what does it matter what the occasion is? Her quote came back 50% over my stated budget once she found out it was a wedding and that didn’t even include coffee or linens. They’d be packed up and out of there before the cake was even cut so I’d still have to rent forks and plates (and coffee cups, and water glasses etc.) on top of that. Really $100 pp for crusted salmon and no coffee is stupid. Oh and $30/hour plus gratuity for servers? Man I must be working in the wrong field! 

Post # 4
Member
9949 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

And then the ones you find who are cheaper are SCATTER BRAINED idiots who aren’t upfront about costs.  UGH.

 

Where are you getting married?  Casual, elegant, whatever?

Post # 6
Member
9949 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

@CreatureFromTheBlackLagoon:  Oh that sounds amazing!!!!!

I’m trying to think of ways to cut costs for that.  Are you doing a sit down dinner or just sandwiches, etc? 

I found this on Pinterest:

Post # 7
Member
51 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Check out some less conventional places. I had a “regular caterer” who happened to just walk off and quit the catering business a month and a half before our wedding, who was charging us $50/pp in the Los Angeles area (already dirt cheap for LA).

We ended up having a great independent Hawaiian BBQ place that isn’t normally a caterer (they are one of those lunch places that you walk up and order, then they serve you at a table that you pick, like Panera-ish).. We had a buffet with 3-meat selection, plus 7 (!!) sides, fruit.. For $12 per person, and $50 for delivery.  We ended up paying extra for their servers and bar tenders, and they didn’t upcharge us for cake cutting , cleanup, serving extra food we brought int (traditional chinese appetizers for that chinese side of the fam). When the rental company failed to deliver plates and couldn’t be contacted, the catering manager was already halfway to Target to buy plates before the planner could even track him down! All in all, including bar tenders, we ended up paying something like $22 per person, including gratuity. (not including linens and silverware and the like)

Think outside the box, there are solutions, but you have to look for them!

Post # 9
Member
1917 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

I totally feel you on that! I hated checking out venues for prices and seeing the dollar signs light up when you mentioned the word “Wedding.”

So we just did a garden party SUPER cheap! We just got a local club to do little cake/savouries/whatevers and it all looked and tasted great – there was more than enough food and all we needed to have were tables to put the food on (also borrowed from a local hall) and a room for them to prepare anything that needed preparing on site. $22/head meant that 160ish people were fully catered for, 10 people cooked served, bussed, everything, then cleaned up at the end as if they were never there. It was awesome!

Post # 12
Member
9949 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

@CreatureFromTheBlackLagoon:  Those things are super important!!!  The thing with catering is that you’re also paying for the delivery of the food, the convenience of having her there, her setting it up, et cetera…=(

Have you considered little sandwiches instead of wraps?

Post # 13
Member
712 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

What about a cocktail reception? That is normally cheaper and since your wedding is during the day, people may not drink as much.

Adding “wedding” to anything makes it more expensive.

You could also have less guests at your wedding if possible.

Post # 16
Member
9949 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

@CreatureFromTheBlackLagoon:  I hate wraps so I’m not the person to ask!  I think the finger sandwiches sound good…except what is a silver dollar roll?

I was thinking something like this:

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