Regardless of your choice of wedding venue you will need to consider how you are going to cater for your guests. You may want the traditional sit-down wedding breakfast or you may prefer a more casual stand-up buffet.
Whatever you choose there are lots of ways to cut the potentially large bill whilst still providing a veritable feast for your guests! You will almost always pay ‘per head’ for each guest being catered for (with children’s meals costing roughly half an adults).
So, the most obvious way to keep costs down is to limit the number of guests you invite to the wedding and wedding breakfast. However there are other ways of reducing costs without reducing numbers and having cheap wedding catering if you really want to invite all your nearest and dearest to the wedding.
If your venue is providing the wedding catering, discuss your options with them. All too often hotels have ‘set menus’ and ‘wine packages’ but don’t be afraid to ask for alternatives if you would rather tailor your own. Perhaps you would prefer a different starter or maybe you want to combine two menus. Would you like to give your guests a choice of main courses?
Most venues should be willing to be flexible but this could work against you if the food you are requesting is more expensive or out of season. If you really want an expensive food such as lobster to be part of your meal try serving it as hors d’oeuvres rather than as a main course. Ask your wedding caterers for other ideas to help you work within your budget for cheap wedding catering.
wedding catering Another way of saving money and having cheap wedding catering costs is to serve your wedding cake as dessert. Not many people will feel like eating cake after a 3 or 5 course meal, but this way the cake becomes incorporated into the wedding breakfast – and will save you money too! (Remember to arrange with your venue for the cake-cutting to take place before you sit down to eat).
A buffet is usually much cheaper than a sit-down meal and allows guests to control exactly what and how much they consume. This is a great option if you have vegetarians, children, fussy eaters or people with food intolerances to think about. Make sure you have enough serving stations to prevent long lines of people queuing.
You could also ask the caterers to prepare and serve food to any elderly guests if you think they may struggle with this. If you wanted to invite a lot of people to your wedding, you could consider having a late wedding, say 3pm-ish then instead of a sit-down meal go straight into the buffet and evening ‘do.
Another top tip for cheap wedding catering is to have an earlier wedding then serve your guests with brunch or afternoon tea. This is usually less expensive than the traditional wedding breakfast and guests will tend to consume less alcohol earlier on in the day so you could save money on both your food and drink bills.