Planning a memorable and exciting event with limited cash flow is not an impossible feat. If you need to cater a party on a small budget, set your worries aside and rely on these terrific money-saving tips!
Catering costs can quickly add up. Fortunately, this means they can also be strategically whittled down to fit your desired budget. There are many cuts and adjustments you can make to your catering program in order to meet your needs and remain within a particular spending limit.
Here are some helpful tips to do just that!
➀ Rethink the Style of Your Party
If you are working with a very limited budget, you may want to consider rejecting the idea of catering a 3 course meal at your party, and instead, planning a more casual event, such as appetizers, hors d’oueuvres, and cocktails. This can still add value and elegance to your party, but without breaking the bank. For an enhanced version, consider small plates, canapes, and self-serve food stations. To better encourage networking and nibbling, couple this style of catering with pedestal tables and tall chairs.
➁ Cut Out Labor
An easy way to cut your catering costs is to cut as much labor as you can. This means you would have to opt for things like customer pick-up, delivery and drop-off service, and pass up selections like set-up, wait staff, bar service, breakdown, and cleanup. By choosing a self-service route, such as buffet-style or boxed meals, you can reduce the total cost of your catering program by as much as 50 percent.
➂ Limit Appetizers and Hors D’oueuvres
It is common to have a large selection of appetizers trays passed around or set up at a party. However, if you really want to cut some extra costs, you should consider limiting the amount of hors d’oueuvres and apps at your particular event, and instead, turn your focus to the primary meal, or perhaps a bar station. Although you cut out introductory snacks and nibblers, you are not taking away from the quality of your party since there will be additional courses, and possibly dessert, served later on.
➃ Forgo the Venue
To save money without restricting your desired catering program, you can make cost cuts in other places. Forgoing an expensive venue for one that is much cheaper, or free, is a great way to do this. You can save hundreds of dollars by choosing to hold your event at a more humble location, such as a park, a restaurant, or a friend’s house. You can cut costs further by cutting back on your table linens, china, cutlery, and more, especially if you choose a free venue that provides these amenities at no extra cost, like a bar or restaurant.