21st May 2021
Wedding Catering Prices Guide
Food and drink are essential to every wedding – everyone expects to be fed and you don’t want h-angry guests. But how much should wedding catering cost? The average wedding catering prices range between £4000-£6000 but this can vary depending on the type of wedding catering you want.
Here we go through what to expect when hiring your wedding caterers and our inside tips when it comes to wedding catering pricing.
Wedding Catering – First Steps
Wedding catering can be done in-house (as in the venue supplies the caterers) or you can hire caterers to come to the venue.
If your wedding catering isn’t booked as part of your wedding venue then you need to find your caterer immediately in order to secure the date. Usually, everything is priced per head, meaning there will be a set price for every guest, this will include the food and sometimes the alcohol, but you will have to check with your caterer.
Picking Your Wedding Caterer
When it comes to picking a wedding caterer, we would recommend us (naturally), but wedding fairs are a fantastic place to meet different wedding caterers and the place to try a lot of free samples (you’re welcome).
If you’re still not sure about which wedding caterer to pick then you can book a private tasting session with most caterers in order to help your decision. It’s important you enjoy the food at your own wedding, so we would definitely recommend taking this extra step to ensure you find everything delicious.
The Cost of Wedding Catering
Your wedding catering involves a lot more than just the food, and these factors are all included in the cost. When booking wedding caterers, a number of factors can vary the price. To help you figure out your wedding catering budget, you need to consider the following:
Number of Guests - You need to feed every guest (no pack lunches allowed) so the more guests you have, the higher the overall price of catering. This includes your guests plus one’ so don’t forget to include them!
Food - The type of cuisine you pick will affect the price. Is the food locally sourced? Are some ingredients out of season? Locally sourced food in season is usually the cheapest option when it comes to pricing.
Staff - Do you need waitstaff? An event manager? Chefs, waiters, bartenders are all needed to make your day a success, but the amount of people you’ll need will vary depending on the size of your wedding. Your wedding caterer should be able to help you with this.
Table Linens- Your venue might supply this, or there is usually an extra fee with wedding caterers and they can bring table lines with them.
Other equipment - From marquees to glassware and utensils. There is a lot of equipment needed to set up your wedding.
Evening Food – Usually food is served again in the evening for any extra guests that weren’t at the reception. It’s important to consider how much you’ll need here; will it be a full on feast or just nibbles?
Dietary Requirements – Will some food need to be vegetarian, vegan, gluten free? Will there be different choices for different dietary requirements or a set menu?
Types of Wedding Catering Available and Their Prices
There are also different types of wedding catering available depending on your tastes and budget. Some types of wedding catering are cheaper than others – like a buffet meal instead of sit-down service, and this should be considered when looking at wedding catering prices.
BBQ or Buffet Wedding Catering - Buffet catering offers a more casual setting versus a sit-down meal.
Platters - Large platters of food are served at reception tables and the guests serve themselves.
Plated Wedding Catering/Sit-down meal - Arguably the most popular type of wedding catering, your guests will be served their meal at their table by waiting staff, with a number of courses, or just one or two if you prefer. Usually, guests have ordered in advance on their RSVP card.
If you need help deciding what type of wedding catering to pick, then we have a blog with our top tips to picking your style here.
Example of Wedding Catering Pricing
For 100 guests having a 3 course sharing feast:
100 x £38.00 + VAT pp = £3,800.00 + VAT
1 x set up fee + VAT = £250.00 + VAT
TOTAL - £4,050.00 + VAT
Cheapest Wedding Catering Options
If you need to save money on the wedding catering, then we would recommend a buffet or BBQ style service. These tend to be cheaper than a plated meal and you will be able to pay less in staffing. However, you will need more food as the guests will be serving themselves. If this is an issue you can serve budget-friendly foods or have staff at the buffet table to serve, ensuring the portions are kept under control.
Top Wedding Catering Tips
To help figure out your wedding catering budget we highly recommend making a thorough list of all potential guests, including their plus ones and any children. Figuring this out early will help your caterer work out how much food will be needed for the big day and takes away a lot of stress and worrying.
You should also try to think of key three adjectives that would describe your dream wedding meal – i.e., rustic, relaxed, quirky. This will narrow down the vibe you are going for and will help your wedding caterer focus on certain types of menus.
Need some help planning your wedding catering? Give Baba Ganoush a call and get expert advice from our wedding managers.