The Dos and Don’ts of Choosing Wedding Caterers
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The Dos and Don’ts of Choosing Wedding Caterers

Your wedding is fastly approaching- you’ve chosen your dress, the venue, and the wedding party is all sorted out. But, there’s one thing you’re missing- you still need to hire wedding caterers.

Of course, celebrating the love between you and your spouse is obviously the main reason why people are coming to your wedding. But, people also definitely come for the party. A good wedding means good music, food, and drinks. Therefore, hiring the right wedding caterer is very important.

How do you know which caterer you should hire?

Check out this guide t learn the top do’s and dont’s for choosing wedding caterers.

Do: Know Your Budget

Don’t even think about interviewing wedding caterers without first setting a budget.

In addition to your budget, you will also want to have your guest list in place. This will allow potential caters to offer you a number of pre-plated options that fall in your price range.

Also, keep in mind that seated service will be a different price than buffet service. Typically, buffet service comes at a cheaper price. Therefore, if you find the perfect caterer that’s a little bit out of your price range, you can see if they offer buffet service to help minimize the costs.

Don’t: Just Focus on the Food

Sure, the taste and presentation of the food definitely make a big difference.

But, it’s important to remember that service is just as, if not more, important.

So, don’t let the pretty pictures of food on the caterer’s website fool you. You still need to hire a catering company that has exceptional service. Because even if the food is excellent, your guests will only remember the bad service.

Do: Ask to Attend a Catering Event

Most professional caterers have events throughout the year that are open to the public to attend.

So, instead of blasting off a million emails to every caterer in your town, you should instead attend a few of these events. This will give you a much better picture of the quality of food and service the caterer offers than any website or email will.

During the event, make sure to pay attention to the demeanor of the staff, their level of attentiveness to their guests, and how they handle any bumps in the road.

This will give you a much better picture of the quality of a catering company than any private food tasting will.

Don’t: Get Too Caught Up on the Food Fads

It can be all too easy to get caught up on the latest food fads that you see on Instagram or on Pinterest.

However, keep in mind that a fad is just a fad, and it will likely be gone by the next wedding season.

Therefore, instead of worrying about staying on top of the latest trends, focus on serving a meal that tastes good and that you enjoy eating.

If you want there to be a personal touch or twist to the meal, consider choosing a catering company that can make a dish that gives a nod to you and your spoused heritage.

For example, let’s say you’re Italian and your spouse is Thai. Perhaps the caterer could create some sort of fusion dish that emphasizes the cuisine of each culture.

Do: Ask the Right Questions

When interviewing caterers, you’re only going to have a limited amount of time with each one.

Therefore, it’s very important that you use your time wisely and ask the right questions.

Here’s what you should be asking all of the caterers that you interview:

  • Do you have our wedding date available?
  • Are you free that whole day, or do you have other obligations that day?
  • Do you have a catering license?
  • Do you have liquor liability insurance? (only necessary if you plan to serve alcohol)
  • Can you provide references from previous clients?
  • Do you specialize in certain types of food (ie, organic, gluten-free, locally sourced)
  • When do you need menu choices finalized by?
  • Are you able to accommodate dietary restrictions (ie, vegetarian, kosher, vegan, allergies, etc)
  • Will you make special meals for children?
  • Do you also provide wedding cakes?
  • Will you provide wait staff?
  • Do you provide alcohol or does the bar need to be handled separately?
  • How will delivery, set up, and takedown work?
  • How much time will you need to set up and take down?
  • Do you have a static menu, or do you offer custom menus
  • How many weddings have you done in the past?
  • Do you provide table settings, linens, and other accessories?
  • How much is the deposit to hold the date?
  • Do you offer payment plans?
  • Do you have photos from past events?
  • Does your staff handle menus and place cards?
  • Will we need any special event permits?

While this is definitely an extensive list of questions, trust us- asking each and every one of these questions will significantly help you narrow down your search in finding the perfect wedding catering service.

Don’t: Ignore Your Gut

Last but not least, don’t be afraid to go with what your gut tells you when hiring your wedding caterers.

If you meet with a wedding caterer that you have a really good vibe with and you feel like is “the one”, then don’t be afraid to jump the gun and hire them.

At the end of the day, you want to hire wedding caterers who you get along with, communicate well, and can handle any problems thrown their way.

Are You Ready to Hire Your Wedding Caterers?

By putting this do’s and don’ts list into action, you should be more than ready to hire the perfect wedding caterers.

Be sure to check back in with our blog for more wedding planning tips, and good luck with your big day!

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