Can I hire my own caterer at a given location?
You have found the wedding venue of your dreams. A fairy tale castle or a mansion or beach pavilion where you absolutely want to get married. However, once you glance at the menu, you are shocked. Those aren’t the options you imagined. Can I come with my own caterer? Or in the worst case, choose my own wine?
The reasons for hiring an external caterer
There are many reasons to hire your own caterer for a wedding. This is the case for couples with a wedding budget and for people who have a budget for the most extravagant parties.
A good reason is to save money. A caterer you know can work for a lower fixed price. Or even better, maybe someone in your family is a bit of a chef. Note that cooking for 100 people is very different than for a family dinner. As well, do you want your loved ones to be stressed out the day before because of all the food?
Conversely, there are also couples who actually want the most exclusive wedding possible, like a Michelin star caterer. Chances are, the average beach pavilion or even a mansion isn’t able to hire someone like that. In this case, it’s good to hire an exclusive caterer.
A third reason for hiring your own caterer is that you want a specific cuisine. For example, the wedding venues in north London have typical wedding food, but the newlyweds want an Indian menu.
Find locations with caterers easily
Some wedding venues do not allow you to come with your own caterer. At other locations, that’s fine. However, how can you get an easy overview of these possibilities?
On TVL, you can easily select ‘external caterer’. This way, you can find venues in London where you can also do business with a catering service.
Corkage fee and ‘cakeage’ fee
When you choose to bring your own food or drink, the location manager will often charge you for it.
It’s logical, because you still use their glasses and dishes. As well, they take care of the washing up and make less money because you don’t order food from the premises.
Make sure in advance that you have clearly agreed on the fees (a corkage fee for drinks and any food-related fee) that you pay for using your own caterer.
Compare prices yourself
You don’t have exclusive requests for food and drink at your wedding? Then it’s a good idea it to make a precise comparison between the offer of the external caterer and the one from the wedding location.
Make sure that all the costs are included in your estimation. For example, how about the price for children up to a certain age? Have you calculated the corkage fee and other food-related fees in your comparison?
Also, with an external caterer, you need to make sure that the food arrives on time and whether the equipment can be used or not. With the caterer of the location, this is already taken care of and they also have a lot of experience with a wedding reception at this location.