In the last year we have met with many caterers during our wedding planning. Each of them had some cost-saving tips to offer us. I thought it would be fun to compile them and pass them on.
1. Dress up only the head table
If you want a fancy look but can’t afford to do every table, do only the head table. You can use inexpensive complementary linens, plates and centerpieces at the guest tables, and splurge on a fancy tablecloth and fancy plates for the head table. That’s the table that will be photographed the most, and dressing it up a bit more will make it look special without adding huge expense.
2. Pass the champagne
Renting a champagne flute and buying champagne for every guest is expensive, especially when some people won’t even drink theirs. Instead of placing a flute at each place setting, have a waiter hand them out at the entrance. Not every guest will take one, saving on rentals and liquor.
3. Cake and coffee buffet
Even if your meal is plated, you can still save money by doing a dessert buffet with the cake and coffee. Again, not every guest will want dessert and coffee, so you can serve a smaller cake. You can use plastic plates and forks instead of china, saving on rental costs. You also won’t need to rent a sugar/creamer/carafe for every single table.
4. Use Fancy Linens Sparingly
Expensive table linen rentals can cost as much as $40 per table cloth. To get the same look for less, use a basic table cloth and a fancy table runner – these cost about $5 each to rent.
5. Serve Prosecco Instead of Champagne
Prosecco is a sparkling white wine that runs about half the cost of champagne, but looks just as pretty in the glass.