Many people find hiring a caterer for events intimidating. Certain things can go wrong if not done properly. People, especially those who never hired local catering services before, sometimes don’t know which direction to take. They don’t think or plan and end up falling into pesky traps. If you are considering hiring a caterer then you, as a hirer have roles to play. There are certain things to do and not to do when you are going through the hiring process. For example, looking for options for people with dietary restrictions or food allergies. Let’s take a look at some of these points.
1. Review everything thoroughly
When you are hiring a caterer, read the catering contracts and review them. Take a look at the catering websites’ terms and condition pages. They explain a lot about their services on their “About Us” pages. As you go through the reviewing process, keep a pen and a notebook near you. Note down anything that you find hard to understand. Jot down all the questions and doubts you might have. Doing so can help the caterers answer your questions one by one.
2. Don’t fear of speaking out
If you have a question regarding their food and service, ask. If you want to negotiate the price, speak it out. Be concise and clear with your caterer. For full-service catering, ask if they are available for it. Professional catering businesses use catering management software to properly manage their orders. So, if you need to include or exclude any ingredient or food item, tell them about it. If you want to make some dietary changes for the dishes, discuss it with your caterers. You should keep a list of things that you want or don’t want in order for the caterer to understand.
3. Food for your guests
As catering a party can take up a lot of money, people select the food quantity as less as possible to cut the price. Truth be told, if you are thinking of making your cocktail party or corporate event impressive then you need to impress your guests with food. If there’s a shortage of food at your party, it is going to taint your reputation as a host. It’s always better to have more food because too much food doesn’t bother the attendees as much as too less food does.
4. Don’t complicate things
Some people can be very indecisive and can even change event planning at the last minute. Some people can be lazy and put up all the work till the last minute and then keep doing everything in haste which can ruin the event. Don’t be like these people. Try to keep your planning and schedule as simple as you can. A good rule of thumb is to start a week or two before the real event. Brainstorm or research on the internet which dishes you will be keeping and omitting from your event. You might also seek help from your caterer about which dishes to serve if you are feeling indecisive. Think about the time of the day your event is scheduled. If it’s an all-day-long event, preparing light breakfast and lunch is plausible. Similarly, for night-time events, a hearty dinner will do good.
5. Take care of dietary needs and restrictions
Always take note about what your attendees prefer or not prefer. Many people have dietary complications and restrictions when it comes to certain food ingredients. For example, many people are allergic to peanuts, pineapples, etc. Some might have digestion problems. Taking everything into account and then proceeding on choosing food items is the best way. But what if you don’t know whether someone has such restrictions or not? The best way to beat this problem is to make options available. Keep options that are gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan or vegetarian. Also, pay special attention to the labelling of food, it will be easy for the attendees to understand what food they should order or stay away from.
Yes! Being a host of an event is a stressful job. But that doesn’t mean you should always be stressed and over analyse. Have fun during the preparation and embrace the catering experience. Let your caterers do their job and everything will be great. Cheers!