Strategies for Event Planners in New York to Save on Catering

May 10, 2018 Susan Serena

Event budget is the number one priority for Event Planners in New York. In this post, we will cover budget swaps for catering that will save you money all while making your event better.

Our research speaks loud and clear. Event budget is the top challenge for Event Planners in New York. While budgets overall are staying the same, if not increasing, expectations and costs are rising.

That puts a lot of pressure on you, faithful reader, to continually deliver events 10 times better at half the price.

While we don’t have magic hats or wands to make that happen, we researched the web for catering budget swap breaks that make sense and can actually deliver more value, while saving money.

Yes, you heard me right.

Less Money. More Value.

Event Planners in New York Can Serve Food that Doesn’t Interrupt Networking

A common problem attendees experience with networking time is that often they are trying to juggle conversations and balance plates and glasses as they mingle around the room within a limited amount of time.

Instead, there is an easy way for Event Planners in New York to avoid these difficulties and encourage more conversations while adding savings to your bottom line. Your guests will appreciate it!

Event Planners in New York are using oversized canapés, instead of a standard (and uninspiring) buffet menu, you are making it easier for your guests to chat. We don’t mean tiny bite-sized hors d’oeuvres either, we mean substantial, filling, finger food that can be eaten without embarrassment (napkin can be offered but no plate required). These can be passed throughout the room and work brilliantly for a standing occasion. And served alongside wine, beer or fruit juices, whatever your preference.


Let’s get to the numbers.

In New York City, the buffet menus range from $47.50 – $67.50 per person. The same caterer offers hearty canapés for $25 per person, per hour, for unlimited quantities. This is a saving of $22.50 per head and potentially an option that will suit your guests much better anyway.

Not to be scoffed at. Pardon the pun!

Event Planners in New York Can Use Sauces or Props to Save on Meat

When it gets to meat at seated events, beef and fish will carry a higher price than chicken. Yet chicken usually does not impress.

What about jazzing it up with clever sauces such as chocolate or exotic fruit? Good presentation or props can make the plate come to life.


Be Daring with your Catering for a Refreshing Event Vibe

Don’t spend on a formal, three or five-course seated dinner, try something out of the ordinary to give a completely different feel to your event. Having a black-tie dinner with guests seated on round tables is often the preferred format for fundraising and corporate events but where is the fun in doing things the same way you have always done things? Instead, why not create a more informal, festival vibe by throwing a posh picnic, delighting your attendees and saving money as well.

Think about it. A three-course dinner can easily cost $100 per head. On the other hand, picnic catering can start from just over $10 per person, and $20 or $30 will increase the selection to offer a really top end outdoor catering selection.

Add picnic blankets and cushions and you have the perfect bohemian setting. And all still well inside your original event budget.

This idea doesn’t just have to be limited to daytime events either. Candles and fairy lights can add a magical feel to a sunset/evening event. And if the weather turns bad it is quick to move everything indoors and adapt to any space.

This idea could quite easily become an annual favorite for your company or charity.


Expenses for an event can add up quickly. We all know the importance of budgeting in event management and Event Planners in New York are constantly seeking more budget-friendly options and coming up with innovative, cost-saving event ideas. We hope these event budget swaps have encouraged you to reconsider how you spend on the catering portion of your budget and empower you to think wisely when spending your catering dollars.

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