When you’re planning a corporate event, you know that your budget is going to be a top factor during the process. Whether it’s your first time or you’re an old hat, there are plenty of valuable resources to assist with cost considerations. Event Brite’s Event Budgeting: The 2019 Guide to Master Your Event Budget is one effective tool to help you get a grasp on the basics. However, there isn’t much guidance when you break down individual categories of expenses.
As you review what you can spend, you may wonder if you can maximize your budget by retaining New York corporate catering services. In many situations, it’s wise to trust these professionals with your event, as they’ve amassed considerable experience and developed key vendor relationships to help streamline costs. Experienced caterers can assist with all your planning needs, starting with the key question: “How much does it cost to cater your corporate event?”
Your Corporate Event Purpose and Objectives:
Your first consideration is the role refreshments will play in your corporate event. Your menu and theme will be very different if you’re planning a meeting for employees, as compared to a spread for potential customers you’re looking to impress. The schedule for your event will obviously be a factor as well, since you want to maximize food and beverage service around your participants’ expectations. Some options include:
- Prepared Platters, Delivered to Your Event: Probably the most convenient and unfussy alternative, you could make arrangements with your caterer to drop off multiple platters for offering in between sessions. Fruit, veggie, and cheese trays range from around $6-$8 per person, while a heartier antipasto platter may start at $11 each. Assorted sliders or chicken fingers are a fun break from the monotony of meetings, and they typically start at around $18 per attendee.
- Pre-Meeting Breakfast Options: To get your corporate event off on the right foot, make sure participants have the essential fuel they need. There are many different options depending on your goals, starting from a continental breakfast at around $11 per person to a hot breakfast buffet for $14 each. If you want to keep things on the lighter side and avoid the dreaded food coma, you might consider a New York bagel platter at approximately $4 per guest or a produce-focused healthy breakfast for $12 a person.
- Fixed Price Lunch: If your guests have spent the morning participating in intense sessions, they’ve probably worked up an appetite for lunch. Cost varies for a fixed price meal, starting at around $18 for a NY deli experience or hearty, meal-sized salad. Prices are higher for a typical meat or chicken and potatoes, usually $30 and up. However, a multi-course meal will usually be accompanied by a selection of sides.
- Pasta for a Crowd: Pasta is filling, affordable, and can please even the pickiest corporate event attendees. Starting at around $14 per person, you could choose a few different options, such as meat-based, veggie-only, creamy or traditional red sauces – and many other alternatives. Fortunately, most caterers will also include a side salad, bread, butter, and rolls to round out the meal.
- Themed Dinner Events: When you want to wind up your corporate meeting with a memorable feast, you might want to consider a meal that works around some theme you’ve developed for the event. If you encourage your employees to exceed their quota with a tropical trip, go for a Hawaiian luau. Is your company launching international operations? Treat your attendees to a Taste of Asia, France, or Italy. Many of these options start at around $30 per guest.
Additional Considerations for Corporate Event Catering:
Many of the above prices don’t include other costs for catering event dinners in New York, such as event staff. You need to add on expenses related to executive and assistant chefs, as well as event managers. These employees work at a rate of $45-50 per hour, and an hourly minimum usually applies. Plus, there are costs related to bartenders and services at approximately $40 per hour.
Our New York Corporate Catering Services Can Help
This information may provide you with essential insight on how much it costs to cater your corporate event, but you may need additional details as you move through the planning process. Our team at Thomas Oliver’s Gourmet Catering & Events is here to help with all aspects of catering event dinners in New York and the surrounding region. Please contact our Manhattan office to set up a consultation with one of our experienced professionals.