50+ QUESTIONS TO ASK A WEDING CATERER
Sweet Beginning, Engagement, & Wedding Tips
A blog series to help every couple on their adventure to marriage.
By | Crystal Horton Photography
Head table for wedding receptionan empty head table, draped in white cloth waits for the bridal party and guests to enter for reception
The internet is crawling with actual wedding nightmares from real couples. Many of them involving Caterers. Now, bad things can happen because we are only human. That doesn't mean you can't help prevent a bad scenario.
Actual Wedding: Bride hired a reputable caterer approximately 8 months before her wedding. She paid in full. She ordered a "home cooked" style meal. The main course; fried and baked chicken on the bone. Day of the wedding, the planner couldn't get a hold of caterer. The ceremony is starting. Planner saw the caterer read their social media message but refused to respond. One hour before the reception, and still no word on dinner. Planner has to inform the parents of the couple of the situation. Without hesitation, they gave her money. The planner called a local restaurant. She orders the appropriate quantity for the entire wedding head count. The restaurant thought it was a joke and put her on hold. The manager answered and took the order. Food made it to the reception a little late, but there was chicken and the bride was happy.
This is one example of why you need to do your homework. The bride still had a beautiful wedding. She was also prepared with hiring an experienced planner. But, could you imagine yourself in that situation? dreadful.
To avoid this kind of a situation, you need to ask questions. I have here over 50 questions.
Feel free to print this page and take it to every interview. Be sure to highlight the ones that are requirements for your wedding.
And don't forget, I have plenty other questions for all your professional vendors. Including photographers.
- How many wedding have you catered before?
- Do you have valid catering license?
- Do you have license for serving alcohol?
- Do you have the optional use of a bar tender?
- Could you please provide references from your previous clients?
- What services are typically included?
- What services are extra?
- What services do you not include at all?
- Where do you source your ingredients?
- Will the season of my wedding affect the price or type of ingredients use?
- Will you freeze my meals weeks before my event?
- How early do you purchase fresh ingredients like salad and bread?
- What is the server-to-guest ratio?
- Buffet: One server to 18 to 25 guests
- Family-style: One server to 15 to 20 guests
- Plated: One server to 12 to 15 guests
- Have you ever catered an event at my venue?
- How will the food be prepared at my wedding?
- How early will you prep the food for my wedding?
- Do you provide chair and table rental if my venue doesn’t provide it?
- Do you provide table linens?
- Do you supply dinner ware and glass ware?
- Do you charge extra for real plates verse paper/plastic?
- How many weddings have you catered before?
- How many events will you cater on my wedding day?
- How many events do you plan in one weekend?
- Do you offer cake cutting services?
- Is there an extra fee for that?
- Do you supply dessert dishes and linens?
- Do you offer coffee or tea after the meal?
- What is your favorite dish to prepare?
- What is a more popular dish that clients rave about?
- Do you offer a tasting?
- What food/dishes/style do you suggest for my theme?
- What is the typical portion size?
- Will you be preparing this dish any differently on the day of the wedding?
- Are you open to changing to meet allergy requirements?
- Do you have food allergy options?
- Do you have a child’s menu?
- Do we get to take left overs home?
- What is your deposit?
- How do you accept a deposit/payments?
- What kind of payment schedule do you offer?
- When do you need the final payment?
- Are you comfortable working with a wedding planner?
- Are you comfortable with last minuet changes?
- What is the latest date that we can make changes to our packages/choices?
- When do you need an official head count?
- Is gratuity included in your package rates?
- Are there any other fees that we should be aware of?
- Describe to me a wedding that didn’t go as planned and was in complete disarray. How did you handle the situation?
- Please give me a second situation where you had to make some immediate changes to a wedding menu?
P.S. ask the professional if they have been through a bad situation and go into detail about what happened. Then ask them how they handled it, and if you can have that bride’s information. (trip them up more, ask them to give you 2 situations and then ask how did they handle it.)
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If you are serious about the quality of your wedding photographs, send me your questions, or date. I only accept 30 weddings each year.
What makes me a different kind of wedding photographer? Let me share the intimate details of how losing my job in the middle of planning my wedding, defined me as a photographer. Focused on not just stunning images, but the experience of a lifetime for you.
You know 30 weddings a year is not many. But, that is because I give more than digital downloads. I deliver an unforgettable experience. Pick the perfect wedding photography package and experience from one of my specially designed packages.
Crystal Horton Photography
1729 Red Clover Dr., Lebanon, Ohio 45036
Captivating Wedding Photography in Dayton, Cincinnati, and Ohio Tristate