The cost of wedding catering can range from hundreds of dollars to thousands, according to Bridal Guide. It varies depending upon several different factors.
The largest influence on the price of wedding catering is the type of menu that will be offered. An afternoon wedding offering hors d'oeuvres and finger foods to guests will cost considerably less than a wedding that includes a full gourmet dinner menu. Of course, the size of the wedding will also affect the overall price of catering. Smaller weddings will require less food, resulting in lowered catering costs. A large wedding with several hundred guests in attendance can greatly increase the final catering costs for the event.
Wedding planning websites and bridal magazines often advise couples to get estimates from local caterers and to discuss menu options. After narrowing down the choices, scheduling an appointment that may include taste-testing is often the next step. To keep the costs of wedding catering lower, a buffet-style dinner is recommended. Other cost-reducing options include hiring experienced friends or relatives or a local cooking school to take over catering duties.
Remember that wedding cakes and alcohol are often arranged separately and are not usually included in the catering budget.
Sites like TheKnot.com recommend setting aside approximately 50 percent of the wedding budget for the reception, not including entertainment.