First, be on the lookout for a book giveaway...yes, The Everything Wedding Etiquette Book is coming out very soon, and I will be giving away a copy (or maybe two)!
Secondly, I am accepting questions about etiquette and general planning...feel free to email me or post it in the comments, just be sure to leave me an email or check back often so you can catch the answer. I will be posting Q and A on Wednesdays.
So with no further adieu...
MYTH: Buffet meals are less expensive than plated meals.
TRUTH: I am sure you've heard it...to save cash have a buffet at your reception. While this may have been true at one time, it is not always the case anymore. It really depends on the location, caterer, and the type of meal service you decide on.
In general, unless you are taking about throwing out a 6-foot long sandwich and calling it a day, buffet meals require just as much time and attention as plated meals. While the caterer may need additional servers for a plated meal, for the buffet the caterer must make more food, as some of the guests may visit the buffet line one, two, or three times before being satisfied. Secondly, there must also be enough china and flatware on hand for these repeat visitors - a guest should never revisit the line with a "dirty" plate. And, finally, if you are responsible for rental items, you will need to rent tables and linens for the buffet, as well as possibly arranging for some decor.
Also, don't make the mistake of thinking food stations are the same as a buffet either. Stations are typically more costly and elaborate than buffets. They typically require a chef at each station and specialty items as well.
What does this mean? In your search for the perfect venue and caterer ask the questions and get all your facts in order before just assuming a buffet will cost less. There is much more to making this decision as well, look for more details in the coming weeks.