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How Much Does Wedding Catering Cost?
Couples nowadays place a large emphasis on providing their wedding guests with the highest quality and tastiest food. Often, the price of that food is an afterthought! Whilst guests often do remember weddings by the food served, it’s important to note that a great meal doesn’t have to cost you a fortune.
So how much exactly does the average Australian couple spend to feed their guests? It’s hard to say, because there are so many factors that go into the cost of wedding catering, but according to the Easy Weddings 2018 Annual Australian Wedding Survey, the average price couples spend on food is $9,100 at around $75 spent per person. Out of the survey participants, 59% of couples had table service, 24% had a buffet, and 17% served finger food. That may seem like a lot of money, but when you think about all the work that goes into food at a wedding, the reason for the catering costs start to become a bit more apparent.
Factors affecting the cost of catering
Venue. Often wedding venues will have catering packages that you can choose from. The more upscale the venue, generally the higher the food’s price tag.
Style of catering. There are many different ways to serve your food. Plated food or a sit-down meal, where guests are served their meal at their table by a waiter, generally cost the most. If you choose to have entrées, the catering cost will likely go up. Cheaper alternatives to plated meals are buffets, family-style meals where servers place large platters of food on tables and guests serve themselves, and cocktail-style meals where food is served via passed hors d’oeuvres, allowing guests to walk around and mingle instead of sitting at their tables.
Whether or not your catering includes things like dessert and alcohol will also affect the price. Many venues offer bar packages that are cost-friendly. You can try eliminating the need for additional desserts if you’ve already ordered a wedding cake from a baker in order to cut costs.
Number of people. This is probably one of the most important factors for determining catering costs. Regardless of how cheap your catering is per head, you’ll still spend a lot if you’re having a large wedding, especially if you’re opting for plated meals.
Length of function. The amount of time you want food to be served will most likely be a factor if you’re choosing a cocktail-style menu. If you want food to be served all day or all night, then expect a higher price.
Location. If you’re hiring caterers that aren’t employed by the wedding venue, then the location of your wedding may affect the price. If the caterers have to travel far (perhaps if you’re having an outdoor wedding in a national park) then you’ll have to foot the petrol bill.
Dietary requirements. It may cost more when you have lots of guests who have specific dietary requirements. This is usually because making multiple different types of meals is usually more demanding and time-consuming than making the same meal, even for serving the same amount of people. Think about which of your guests have allergies, are gluten-free or vegetarian or vegan. This will also help you choose your menu.
It’s important to be upfront about your budget
A lot goes into planning, preparing and serving food for a wedding. It’s easy to overlook the details, so it’s important that you talk to your caterer or the staff at your wedding venue to know exactly what options are available for you.
Don’t try to order a big package and then try to cut costs down the road, plan your catering to suit your budget accordingly. Do a lot of research into the different types of catering available, what you want, and which aspects of catering are non-negotiable for you.
Ultimately, weddings should be fun! Planning a wedding should be enjoyable as well. Take the time to enjoy your food and cake tastings, and designing your menu. Don’t forget to cherish the process, because then the result will be much more rewarding for you, your partner, and all your guests. This is your dream wedding, so think about what you want. Your guests will probably enjoy whatever you choose, so don’t overthink it!
Sydney Wedding Catering
Organize your wedding catering in Sydney with The Grounds Catering.
ph 02 9699 2225