(Closed) Need advice: should I have a catering contract? How can I lock in prices?

posted 8 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
21 posts

Definitely get a contract signed! I’m currently dealing with the ramifications of not having one from a vendor…it sucks.

Good luck! 

Post # 4
2866 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I’d see if you could get an email stating his price range and what he typically. You’re about 10 mos out so they should be able to give you a contract relatively soon (we had ours about 6 mos before our wedding).

However I could see that a lot of caterers may not be able give you a contract or definite pricing TOO early because acts of nature may limit some food availability. He should be able to give you a general menu (meat, # of veggies, dessert etc) and a price. Whatever you can get in writing now will help you plan.

Post # 6
10366 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2010

It is NOT too early to get a contract signed – you are less than a year away! I signed my catering contract more than a year out. He should be able to committ to a price point for a list of possible dishes, and then you can narrow down the specific dishes at the tasting. Do not book him without a contract. You could seriously regret that decision.

Post # 7
1523 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Definately not too early to have a contract signed! We signed a contract with our caterer 16 months before the wedding.

I made sure that 2009 pricing was guaranteed for our 2010 wedding in the contract as well.

Post # 8
1418 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

We signed a contract with our reception venue, which included catering, in June – so over a year out from our wedding.  It is understandable that food prices and availability change, but I did not want to get screwed by a huge increase!  My venue says typically increases are 3-5% a year at most; however, last year, they raised their prices by 13%!  That is HUGE when you are budgeting for something much lower.  We were not able to lock in this year’s prices BUT we were able to get them to agree that prices would be raised by no more than 5% and had that added into our contract before we signed it.

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