Q: Which way should I go for my wedding regarding a banquet hall that serves the meal themselves or a catering business that will serve it at any location? I am asking you this because our budget is tight and I want a nice wedding reception but also an affordable one. Please Help!
A: This is a great question! Both situations offer their own pros and cons, so I'll try to summarize them and assist in making your decision easier. With regards to the banquet hall scenario, depending on where you end up, you'll be paying between $40-$180 per head. You'll have minimal control over the menu that ends up being served. However, the staff will be included in the cost, and will have experience in working at that facility. Your biggest cost will be liquor. With regards to an outside caterer that comes in, you'll have more of an opportunity to get involved in the selection of the actual menu. The thing to look out for is to ensure that the cost of staff is included in the quote provided to you. Often, to mask the total cost, outside caterers will give you a total per head cost for the food, not including taxes, staff, corkage fees, etc. If you decide to go with an outside caterer, you should begin your hunt for a banquet hall asap. There aren't many halls that allow outside caterers to come in - this may end up being the deciding factor!