Average cost of wedding catering in Switzerland?
You should anticipate paying between 100 to 140 Swiss francs per person for wedding catering in Switzerland. That can vary considerably depending upon the size of the wedding and your requirements. A wedding cake will most likely range from 500 to 1200+ Swiss francs.
Why is it so expensive?
The most significant distinction between a wedding and a sit-down meal at a nice restaurant is that at a wedding all of the food must be ready at the same time. Plus, the staff can only handle one event per night.
1. The food is served at one time
Assume a restaurant with a capacity of 40 to 50 guests. The guests would arrive steadily, and even at maximum capacity, the kitchen would only need to serve about 15 dishes at a time. However, at a wedding all of the food must be ready at the same time. This means more equipment and staff are necessary as compared to the restaurant.
2. The staff can do only event per night
At a wedding enough staff must be on hand to handle peak demand. After the peak the staff is less utilized, and there usually isn’t an option for the staff to work elsewhere. In effect, staff utilization at a wedding is not great.
This shows that wedding caterers and restaurants have quite different pricing structures.
Other variables affecting the price
What you include in the cocktail hour appetizers, the main dish and desserts has an impact on the total price of catering. Beverage costs can be significant, and you’ll want to give them due consideration. A wedding cake may be purchased from another vendor.
Service style could have a big impact on your catering bill. More servers and equipment required equals a more costly meal.
Catering for a wedding is expensive, but there are options for people who wish to get creative. Try exploring the cost-cutting tips below. If all else fails, consider the size of your guest list.
How to save money on wedding catering
1. Consider the type and portion size of food options
Budget-friendly options for your protein such as pork or lamb fillets could be considered. This shouldn’t really affect the quality of the evening while saving you money.
Instead of full size desserts, bite-size options offer considerable savings.
2. Consider outside catering
Try to use a venue that allows for outside catering. This could represent substantial savings to your food budget. There are also other alternatives to a traditional wedding caterer:
Local culinary schools: Students from culinary schools will usually produce excellent results at a fraction of the expense of professional caterers. See if this option is available in your community. Some may have just what you’re looking for.
Restaurants that offer catering: You can have your wedding reception right at a restaurant, or use the restaurant catering service for a buffet at your venue. You must provide your own serving staff to man the buffet tables.
Or you can use restaurants by holding a series of mini-receptions:
“After a ceremony last September in the Hudson Valley of New York for our immediate families (grand total: 11 guests), we’re holding a dozen mini-receptions for extended family and small groups of friends through May. “
That’s essentially a microwedding which uses multiple small receptions.
Food trucks that offer catering: Options include food trucks for appetizers and hors d’oeuvres, the main meal, desserts, cocktails/wine/beer, late-night snacks and more. Mini-food carts are an option too.
3. Try to avoid food that is out of season
Your caterer may have a wide variety of dishes to choose from, but pay particular attention to what’s in-season if you’re on a budget. In-season food is going to be cheaper, closer and taste better.
4. Consider a brunch or lunch as the main course
People usually prefer an evening wedding but a daytime one is one way to cut costs. You may serve lunch or brunch instead of dinner which are typically much less costly.
5. Use a buffet-style service
Using a buffet-style service is another way to cut costs. It generally requires fewer staff too. You’ll need one server for every 25 guests depending on number and complexity of dishes served. This compares to one server for every 10 guests at a seated, plated meal.
Family-style dishes: These are big bowls or plates of things that guests pass around. Various kinds of pasta dishes in big bowls are typical family-style dishes. Pizza would be another. While the dishes have to be taken to the tables, the number of servers is reduced.
6. Have fewer alternatives
Rather than giving your guests the option to choose between different protein or vegetarian dishes, find one really good dish to serve everyone, and include one vegetarian option too. Some folks may not be excited about your protein pick, but the side dishes and desserts can make up for it.
Note: Fewer side dishes means quicker serving times.
7. Consider the beverages offered
If most of your guests like to drink beer, then maybe you should forego that liquor bar.
8. Book off-season
The season and day of the week may affect the pricing. Many people consider a day like Saturday in the spring or fall as a special day, and so securing a booking at such date will force you to dig deeper into your pockets. However, if you’re willing to book on a less popular day, such as a Friday or Sunday, or during the winter or summer, you may be able to get a better deal.
9. Cut staff
One way to reduce costs is by cutting staff. Unfortunately, this could affect the quality of the guests’ evening by increase wait time.
10. Cut the guest list
Cutting attendees is the surest way to reduce cost. You already knew that but it’s worth repeating.
At Snackypoos, we do wedding catering in the Zürich area. If you’d like to discuss your catering needs please contact us here.