New Jersey

Catering & dinner rentals for 200 guests

After searching and comparing prices of usual venues, now I'm considering to possibly just rent a space and find all vendors separately.

What would be an avg cost of catering for 200 people sit down dinner style (upscale menu), wait staff included? I also would need to rent utensils and plates and the whole nine yard!

For venues that do all inclusive work, I can do max of $135/person. Would doing things separately be more costly?

FYI, I'm in Bergen county.

Re: Catering & dinner rentals for 200 guests

  • doing things seperately is usually ALOT more costly. I chose David's country in which is bvery much under your budget of 135pp and includes everything from the cake down to the linens (escort cards, flowers.. ect...). They have a very large menu and the owners are just amazing to work with, one of them even emailed me to ask how I was feeling because he remembered in a phone conversation that I had mentioned I was having some health issues. Its a bit of a drive from bergen county but I havent found many places that can beat the prices, besides perona farms which is even less expensive, however, they can have multiple weddings at one time and I dont care for that.

    Good Luck!
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  • edited April 2013
    There are many options for $135 per person (including tax and tip). Depending on the day or time of day (Friday, Sunday and Saturday afternoons are cheaper than Saturday evenings) as well as season (off seasons are also less expenesive - think November - March), you should be able to find many, many locations in that range if you are willing to budge on the above. (Getting married in February, rather than May for example)

    (But: $135 x 200 people is $27,000 in FOOD - this obviously does not include flowers, music, decorations, etc - but it does include all food/drink costs, linens, chairs, cake, valet parking, etc.)

    A close friend did the catering route at the Glen Ridge Women's club, and the price per person was under $50 per person, which included wine and beer and tax and tip (and linens). It included a cocktail hour and buffet dinner.  Cakes are really  not all that expensive (some major bakeries are, but not ALL). So yes, there can be a major price difference if budget is your main concern.  Be sure to ask about flatware (plastic, or extra fee for metal?) and other add-ons. Glen Ridge Women's club did include chairs and tables, but not all places do.

    The space itself had a rental fee (not sure - a few thousand) and she had to do all of the set up herself. But, since the space is not rented regulary, she was able to go the day before and have everything all ready to go, which is a plus. 

    ($50 x 200 = $10,000 in FOOD. A cake can be $1,000 (high end?), and rental is say, $3000. That is $14,000 in venue and food. You are still no where near $27,000.)

    There are positives and negatives. If you like DIY, it can be a really good way to save money. You just need to do the research, contact caterers and know all the prices - as well as contacting places that are all inclusive.  Then you have to look at the numbers and decide what is best for you and your FI.
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  • Thanks for the recommendation. I will check out David's. As for Glen Ridge, how was it? I was actually looking into their website but noticed there were no hanging decorations. Is that part of their rule? And how is the outdoor space?
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