Getting engaged and planning your wedding is a time to celebrate your love and commitment to one another. But as exciting as it is, it can also be stressful.
Marriage is one of the most important commitments you’ll encounter in life. But the other major commitment is the time couples invest in preparing for their big day. Regardless of how long your engagement is, planning a wedding is a big investment of your time and energy. Many couples tend to go to extreme lengths to coordinate each and every detail to make sure it’s both perfect for them and their guests.
There is a seemingly endless number of decisions to be made: the venue, the guest list, the dress, and of course, the food. The type and style of food sets the tone for your wedding, but you’ll also want to be sure it tastes great. In this article, we share our top 5 considerations before hiring a wedding caterer.
1. Determine Your Budget
Before you start researching wedding caterers, we recommend that you nail down your budget. Start by searching ‘local wedding caterers in my area’ online and then find out how much their wedding catering packages cost. Be mindful of their wedding catering service and term agreements as that will also play a factor in the overall cost. When interviewing wedding caterers, make sure to ask what is included in their wedding catering packages (e.g. tableware, delivery, setup). If you’re on a tight budget, make sure to relay the details to the caterer to see if they can create a special package for you.
2. Select Your Wedding Style
When it comes to weddings, there are quite a few styles to choose from. Whether you’re looking to serve hors d’oeuvres, have a cocktail hour, a tasting menu, or a formal sit-down dinner, your budget will help you narrow down your style. The ambiance of your wedding venue will also play a huge factor in your final food selections. Make sure to ask as many questions as you can before making a final commitment.
3. Ask Your Wedding Planner for Recommendations
When choosing a wedding caterer, we recommend that you ask your wedding planner for recommendations. In most cases, they have a list of preferred catering companies that they work with. However, if their recommendations do not meet your criteria, you may want to ask your wedding planner, and your venue, if they have certain requirements (e.g. certificates or licenses) that caterers must meet in order to work on their premises.
4. Research Online Reviews
If you’re still struggling with narrowing down your selections, make sure to read their online reviews so you can get an idea of the overall level of satisfaction that other customers have received. In most cases, you can find reviews on the caterer’s website, Google, Facebook, Yelp, BBB, and the Knot.
5. Schedule a Tasting
Once you’ve finished your research and narrowed down your list of potential wedding caterers, this is where the fun begins. Now you get to taste test everything to ensure their food lives up to the hype! In addition, a tasting will give you the opportunity to compare the quality, style, and presentation of the food to ensure it lives up to your expectations. Last but not least, a tasting prior to finalizing the contract gives you the opportunity to discuss how your own ideas can be worked into their existing wedding catering menus.