Treat your guests to an unforgettable meal on your unforgettable day with our step-by-step guide.By: Nicole Burnham Onsi
Caterers' Question Time
Before you sign on the dotted line, make sure you get answers to the following questions:
- Are you state-licensed? Do you have liability insurance and a valid liquor license?
- How long have you been in business in this area?
- Are you affiliated with any professional groups or societies?
- May I have a list of recent references to check?
- Must we pay for a set minimum number of meals no matter how many guests show up?
- How much leeway do you give over the final head count? Will you be able to make a few extra or fewer meals if we have last-minute guests or no-shows?
- Will we be able to sample your food? See the linens/china you plan to use before the event? May we visit a wedding in a similar style to ours during the setup time?
- Do you offer kids' meals? What will you charge to feed the band/DJ and photographer?
- May we substitute a cake from another baker, or bring in alcohol from outside? If so, are there additional fees involved?
- Are all taxes and gratuities included in your quote? If not, what are they?
- How familiar are you with my reception site? Are there any special concerns about the space, given what I'd like to serve?
- How long will it take for you to set up and break down the site? At what time will you need access to the site?
- Are you familiar with my florist? Band/DJ? Will you be able to work with them during the site setup?
- Do you have your own wait staff, or do you hire for each event? How will servers and bartenders be dressed? How much experience do they have? Will you be on site? If not, who will be the point person to handle any problems that may come up?
- How do you handle any overtime fees?