Weddings can be incredibly expensive, and food and drink is often one of the worst offenders to your budget. Here are some tips on saving money while planning your wedding menu.
Choose a Flexible Wedding Venue
Your ability to plan a great budget-friendly wedding will depend on you choosing a flexible wedding venue that will work with your catering needs. While many wedding venues offer great food service options that can take the pressure off of you for catering, the best venues will also allow you to bring in some of your own refreshments. Then it will be up to you to find the right balance between your budget and the time that you spend preparing refreshment.
Bring Your Own Appetizers
If there's any place where it's easy to cut back on pricing, it's on the appetizers. Keep it simple before the main course with some cheese and crackers, a few wine or beer selections, and some non-alcoholic drinks.
Consider Meal Stations
Many wedding venues are beginning to offer food stations as an alternative to the plated dinner. For instance, you may choose to have a carving station, a burrito station, and a vegetarian station. These can sometimes cut down your costs if the plated meals are too much food for your guests. This idea has to be balanced carefully, though, since you don't want guests to feel like they're at a buffet. If you still present the stations as a selection rather than a free-for-all, you can limit the amount of food you go through.
Choose Your Items Wisely
When choosing off of the catering menu, you can do a few things to lessen your final expenses. Choose seasonal items, since you may have a surcharge for off-season plates. Also consider the venue and make sure that your wedding plans won't cause any of your food to go bad; if you want to serve ice cream at your beach wedding, work with the planner to make sure that none of the ice cream will melt and be wasted.
Many brides and grooms feel the need to provide an extravagant feast to complement their wedding. However, your guests are there to celebrate you; as long as you provide enough food to keep them fed, it can be acceptable to cut back on several parts of your refreshments. Work with your venue's food service team to coordinate a great package that includes a few splurges and a few cutbacks.
To learn more, contact a wedding venue like McHale's Events & Catering.