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How much does it cost to feed wedding guests? Why is it so expensive? How can I save money on my wedding food?

4 Mins read

One thing that people always remember when they attend a wedding is the food. Yes, the ceremony is wonderful and its fun getting up and having a dance with all of your close friends and family around you, however, it is the food that will always be the most memorable. As such, you’ve got to hit the ball out of the park with it comes to your wedding catering.

The fact is, your friends and family will be travelling from all over to spend an entire day with you. A wedding is a long event and people do work up an appetite – particularly when there is alcohol involved. So, this is one particular area that you should not skimp on.

In this article, we’re going to talk you through the average cost to feed guests in Australia, why wedding catering is typically quite expensive, and share some tips on how you can save money on your wedding food.


How much does it cost to feed wedding guests?

So, the important question is, how much does it cost to feed wedding guests? In all honesty, the total cost can vary dramatically. The average falls somewhere between $50 and $100 a head. It all depends on what style of catering you opt for, how many courses you want, and whether you are going to have a plated, full-service meal or a buffet.

How much does it cost to feed 100 wedding guests?

Let’s look at how much it would cost to feed 100 quests based on the average Australian wedding. Your average wedding catering in Australia for 2020 was approximately $9,800. If you were to divide that amount between 100 people, you’d be looking at roughly £100 per head.


How much does it cost to feed 200 wedding guests?

And how much does it cost to feed 200 wedding guests? Looking at the cheaper end of the spectrum you are likely to pay some $50 per head. However, the likelihood is probably going to be around $80. Again, it all depends on the style and quality of catering that you are going for. You might be able to save some money when catering to a larger audience, per head, but that all comes down to what kind of deal you can negotiate with your chosen catering company.


Why is wedding food so expensive?

So, why is wedding food so expensive? The fact is, wedding caterers provide a service that is in high demand. Couples that want to have the most memorable wedding possible are going to want to provide the most delicious food for their guests.

You must always consider the fact that so much else goes into wedding catering aside from the good. You will need to account for the labour costs, the plates, the flatware, all drinkware, cutlery, and napkins, etc.

Think about how much one person would spend on a fine dining experience in a fancy restaurant? For three courses and drinks you are likely going to pay at least $100 – more in some cases. In that light, wedding catering doesn’t seem all that unreasonable. Of course, when you are having to pay for 100-200 guests, it does feel like an awful lot of money. That said, there are ways that you can save money on your wedding catering – for example, going for a buffet rather than a two hat chef wedding catering experience.


How can I save money on my wedding food?

So, how can you save some money on your wedding food? Here are some tips to consider:

  • Book special offer rates: when you are planning your wedding it is always good to give yourself as much time as possible. If you start early you can attend various wedding expos and speak with potential wedding caterers. If you get lucky, you might be able to bag some special offer rates. Take your time, do plenty of research, and you should be able to find an attractive deal.
  • Opt for budget-friendly foods: you don’t have to go for a fine-dining experience to keep your guests satisfied. Opt for entrees like chicken and pork, rather than steak or lobster, for example.
  • Skip a full-service dinner: rather than having a full-service dinner experience, why not go for a buffet style dinner instead? That way, you’ll be saving on labour as well which can bring the cost down significantly. Not only that, but often a buffet style dinner encourages your guests to interact more. Additionally, those who don’t want to eat that much can have more control over their portions, thus saving on waste.
  • Get married on a weekday: while getting married on a weekend is preferable, particularly when it comes to your guests being able to get time off work, choosing a weekday instead will be significantly cheaper. It may not be ideal, but if budget is an issue this is a viable option.
  • Consider using disposable dinnerware: so much money goes into the dinnerware, so opting for disposable plates and so on, might be preferable. Certainly, it doesn’t have the most appealing aesthetic, but if money is tight nobody will mind.
  • Go casual: a classy wedding reception doesn’t have to be for you if you want to save some money. In fact, if a BBQ, tacos, or takeaway pizza is your preferred option, this casual take on wedding catering can save you money.



To recap:

  • Wedding catering can cost anywhere between $50 and $100 per head.
  • Wedding food is so expensive due to it being in high demand and there being so much else involved (e.g., dinnerware, napkins etc.).
  • There are many ways to save money on your catering, from securing promo rates, choosing a buffet instead, or getting married on a weekday.

We hope that this article has been helpful for you. If you are looking for the ideal blend of quality cuisine and affordability, we recommend seeking out a reputable wedding catering provider like private chef Thomas Johns. Remember, when it comes to your special day, there are few things as important as feeding your guests.

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