5 Ways to Cut Corporate Catering Costs

Hiring a catering company doesn’t have to be a costly affair. Food is an important element of a successful event and should not be skimped on. The  catering tips listed below will ensure you stay on track with your budget while not having to compromise on the quality of  food and service at your event.

  1. The overall catering cost always depends on the number of guests at your event. In order to get an accurate count, make sure to send out invitations at least one month before the event and aim to collect RSVPs by at least one week before the event. Call guests the day before the event to give them a gentle reminder and also check for any last minute cancellations. It’s common that 5 to 10 percent of guests that confirmed will not turn up on the actual day, so take this into account to avoid over ordering which will lead to unnecessary costs. Discuss food quantities with your caterer as they’ll be able to make an accurate estimate of the right quantities to order for your guest list.


  1.  You don’t have to go all out and serve a variety of appetisers at a cocktail event that precedes dinner. Just a few options served on platters are great for guests to nibble on while mingling. Speak with your catering company and opt for appetisers made from local, seasonal produce which will be fresh and  a cheaper alternative to meat hors d'oeuvres.


  1. Contradictory to popular belief, buffets are generally a more expensive catering option as there’s no way to manage portion control and caterers usually charge more based on the belief that they will have to continue to replenish the buffet and end up paying to feed more guests than the headcount provided. Plated meals are a good option for the budget conscious, as it allows caterers to determine portions resulting in less food going to waste.


  1. Opting for a lot of meat dishes in your menu can cause your catering costs to skyrocket. By choosing one or two star dishes to really glam up your event menu and then opt for less expensive “fillers” to complement those two items will help keep your catering budget on track. Choosing less expensive meats like chicken or building a menu around seasonal meats and produce are a fantastic way to dramatically reduce your food costs. Speak with your caterer and discuss a course that has meat but doesn’t use a “choice cut” of meat. For example,  prime rib will be less expensive than filet mignon.


  1. With action stations serving speciality dishes becoming a popular style of food service, it’s important to remember that it may increase your catering costs as you’ll have less portion control since guests will serve themselves and can opt to return to the station more than once.
Posted by Jessica on October 31, 2012 at 01:32PM