Post # 1
So, I’m getting to the finish line with my wedding planning! Now I just need to get my catering counts together.
I asked the venue how they handle vendor meals (specifically, are they just the same choices as the regular dinner and if the cost was the same). The venue coordinator told me they offer boxed lunches for vendor meals @ $15 which includes a sandwich, apple, cookie, and chips. I would be providing it to my DJ staff (2 people) and photographer (1 person). If I were to offer them regular meals the plate would cost between $43-$53. So, basically a lot more expensive BUT when it’s only for 3 people it does only come out to about $100 so I guess it’s not a huge deal for the budget…so what I was wondering–is it rude or inappropriate to serve vendors a boxed lunch instead of a plated meal? Or is it totally ok? I thought the boxed meal would be more convenient to eat while working, but obviously a sandwich isn’t as “nice” as our meal choices (the contract does not specifically state that they need to eat the same meal as the rest of the wedding guests, just that a meal should be provided).
Post # 2
- Wedding: Disneyland - January 2016
I don’t think it would be rude at all to give them the vendor meal. That’s what they were made for. I think it would be rude of your vendors to expect a pricey and elaborate guest meal when they are there to work.
Post # 3
- Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom
I didn’t actually feed my vendors. My DJ said he never ate on the job before I could even ASK him the ettiquet, and my photographer left before the dinner was served (I could only afford him for the ceremony and formal photoshoot.
I personally think the box lunches would be fine though 🙂
Post # 4
That’s a pretty crappy vendor meal option imo. Our venue, and I thought most had this, was to offer the same plated meal options, but without the salad and soup or extras, just the main dish, at a discount. Our meals were $35-40, but just the plated dinner vendor meal option was only $20. $15 for what they are providing sounds a little crazy imo, but I guess if that’s their only option then I’d go for it.
Post # 5
Vendors don’t (or at least shouldn’t) expect to be served the same meal as the guests. Giving the vendors a simpler, less expensive meal is very typical.
Post # 6
We gave all our vendors the same meal as our guests, and we also seated them among our guests.
Post # 7
I think if you can afford ti I would much rather provide a hot meal to my vendors than a sandwhich, especially to the photographer who is literally on his/her feet all day trying to caputre the perfect photos of your day. Also, during the meal time your photographer and DJ’s aren’t “working” per say as a photographer doesn’t take photos while people are eating their dinner (not flatterign) and DJ’s aren’t keeping the crowd going because…people are eating so there’s normally just classical music playing in the backround.
Post # 9
I’m a wedding vendor….and literally every single wedding we are served the same meal as the guests. If it’s plated they just fix us plates, if it’s a buffet we just hop through the line really quickly after the bridal party (so that we’re finished eating at the same time as the couple and ready to get back to work when they’re up and greeting guests). We have one venue in the area that does boxed meals for vendors….it sucks and every vendor hates working there. :/ Nothing is worse as a photographer who has been busting ass for 6-8+ hours to finally get a chance to sit and eat and you’re handed a soggy plastic wrapped sandwich and bag of chips. Part of it is because this venue treat vendors like 3rd class citizens….but it’s the venue that ALL the vendors joke on because of their boxed lunch. I’ve had couples at this venue insist on feeding their vendors the same meal as guests only to have the venue try to argue it with them. Then again, I become really invested in my clients and work hard to build a relationship with them over the course of our contracted time together and after….so they tend to all be pretty awesome and treat us like part of the family.
Post # 10
we did a vendor meal- it was a chicken breast with green beans and mashed potatoes- as opposed to the steaks we had for the other guests.
Personally the sandwich chips and apple doesnt sound that appealing, but I wouldn’t serve the full meal either. Can you ask your venue to do a simple hot meal, instead?
Vendors are on their feet all day, doing a lot of work. If they’re expecting a meal and only get a sandwich and chips, thats not super filling. (I personally disagree with the whole vendor meal thing in general) but if they are contracted to receive a meal, I would make sure it’s a nice, filling meal.
Because…what would be worse than a hungry crabby DJ??
Post # 11
- Wedding: Disneyland - January 2016
This is always something that I wish someone could help me understand. Why are wedding vendor’s expected to be fed by the people they were hired to work for?
I understand they are working on their feet all day. But who else works on their feet all day? Farmers, HVAC technicians, construction workers, etc. These are all jobs that require constant walking, lifting, crawling for 8-10+ hours every single day. They’re tough on the body and literally exhausting. Yet if any of these workers demanded their bosses feed them lunch, they’d be laughed right out of the job. Like everyone else, they bring their own lunch to work and if that’s a sandwich and chips, so be it. They’re working, how else are they supposed to tote around a hot meal? They don’t, they eat what they have, and get the job done without becoming “grumpy” about it.
So with that in mind, I guess I don’t understand why wedding vendors are seen as somehow more superior and deserving of a hot plate. I appreciated my vendors and ended up giving them our guest meals since we had an entire table cancel on us and it would have been a waste. But up until that point we had planned on giving them vendor meals. Because as nice as it was for them to be there, they were only there because I was paying for them to do so. They weren’t my guests or friends, they were on the job. And if they didn’t like what I had to offer them to eat, they could bring their own meal like everyone else in the workforce does.
Post # 12
Because everyone else who works long days usually gets a legally allocated lunch break of 30 minutes – 1 hour where they are not working. Sure their boss doesn’t have to provide them with food…but they legally have to provide them with a break in which they are free to either eat a meal brought from home to leave to get their own food.
Wedding vendors don’t get that luxury. I don’t get to go up to my bride at 6pm and say “hey, I’ve been here for 7 hours with you already I’m taking my 1 hour lunch/dinner break and going to get something to eat”. Dinner is typically the downtime of a wedding where as a wedding photographer I’m not really photographing (as those are unflattering and most people feel uncomfortable being photographed eating). That being said I’m trying to still quickly eat to get myself regrouped and ready for the reception. I’m also having to keep my eyes/ears open in the event someone decides to give an impromtpu speach or toast and I have to drop everything and run in.
Post # 13
I fed my DJ and photographer the entire 5 course dinner and sat them at a table together. I figured $100 won’t break the bank and at least I won’t feel guilty. They did extra nice job for me and I like to think it is because I gave them nice food but I might be fooling myself here.
Post # 14
- Wedding: Disneyland - January 2016
I didn’t think anyone has ever said, ‘NO! Don’t let your vendor’s eat at ALL!’, simply that it’s not necessarily required to supply them with the meal unless their contract says so. You’re right, dinner is downtime, so it’s an assumed meal break for vendors too. A vendor can write it in their contract if they wish to make it more clear that a meal will be eaten, likely when lunch/dinner is served. But whether they’re eating a guest meal or one they brought from home makes no difference in your example of having to stop suddenly to take photos of a toast. So it still makes very little sense to me that people who are working expect to eat that same types of luxury food that that hosts are paying a hefty sum for their guests.
Post # 15
We are feeding our vendors the same meal as well as seating them with everyone else. Who cares that you are paying them to work? They are busting their butts all day for your wedding – and shouldn’t be treated or served any differently. IMO a “vendor meal” is a slap in the face. If you can afford it, give them the same thing as everyone else.