(Closed) Would it be cheaper to make our own food?

posted 5 years ago in Food
Post # 3
604 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I’d go with the venue that includes catering if I were you.  It’s an amazing price and then your family and friends can have more time to enjoy the wedding instead of having to cook and clean.  By the time you rent all of the items you need and pay for food, I don’t think you’ll save that much money.  Will your families have to serve the food too?

Post # 5
1570 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

@snd485:  Go with catering. As PP said after renting all the stuff needed to cater your own event you will come out only saving a few hundred dollars in the end. I was looking into doing this for a long time but instead found a cheap catering option. My catere cost 11/ per person.

Post # 6
1777 posts
Buzzing bee

I’m big on being frugal, and like to cook. I’ve carried in full meals at work to say “thank you” for one thing or another (about 50ppl). Most of what I can cook will be as good as most caterers. After having done that – $15.00 pp seems like a bargain.  Just think of how many liters of soda you’ll have to buy at the store and transport and carry in for unlimited soft drinks.  I’d say conservatively you’ll need 1/2 ltr per person(honestly probably more for a june outdoor wedding lasting 5 hrs – probably more like a ltr per person). That means someone has to buy and cart at least 100 ltrs of soda. Not having to do that is worth something. 


200 people is not a small undertaking.  Just renting the dinnerware (unless you’re going the disposable route) and having people carry in all of the dishes, as well as set up the facility for tables, chairs, napkins, etc will take more tham than you imagine. 


If you’re very organized with the planning, it can be done and hopefully you can avoid the situation where everyone says they’ll help, but on the actual day people either just drop off the food, or don’t chip in and make sure that pans are refilled, and hot food is hot enough to avoid food borne illnesses etc.


I’m not sure what I’d do – as I said I love saving money, but the logistics for  200 is a LOT.


Hope you can plan/problem solve to come up with the way for you to have the most care-free day.  

ETA:  What is the physical layout for the facility?  Is parking close?  Is there a loading dock?  Are people going to have to park a little ways away and then carry in all the stuff needed, load after load?  Are there stairs involved?  

Post # 7
604 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

You would still need people to replenish the buffet, keep extra food hot/cold, monitor the sternos, clear dirty plates, clean up things if people drop food…etc.  You’ll still need servers, just less than for a plated meal.  I think it’s a bad idea, especially if your family isn’t used to doing catering, but that’s just my opinion.  I’d try to cut back elswehwere or see if you can find a cheap place to cater the event at the place that costs $300 to rent…maybe a local restaurant. 

Post # 8
6256 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: March 2014

You should have the wedding you can afford. As a guest, I’d rather someone just have very tasty cake and punch and maybe some Sam’s Club veggie or cheese trays, than for someone to cheap out on the catering and hire amateurs who (while well meaning, obviously) may not have the experience or equipment to handle various contingencies.

I have never been to a self-catered wedding where the food was good. Not even when they brought the big silver takeout boxes from restaurants. The closest thing I have seen to good DIY catering was 6′ Subway subs. If you’re going super casual anyway, you might consider that.

Though personally, I’d just go with the $15pp at the hall. That’s half what we are paying, and it seems what we are paying is half again of what most bees pay.

Plus….would you really feel comfortable making your family members work the entirety of your reception, when they should be celebrating with you? I couldn’t bear to do that to people. Even if they promised it would be ok or seemed excited about it.

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