How to create a Request for Proposal for catering
Are you planning your wedding or another large party? Do you need to order food for the reception? Is the prospect of
ordering catering causing you stress? Then read on...
Ordering catering for your event, whether it be a wedding reception, bar/bat mitzvah, or big birthday bash, is actually a very simple process. In short, all you are doing is telling a caterer that you are interested, providing some basic information about your event, and then letting them do the hard work of composing an appetizing menu for your guests. Below is a simple template for a Request for Proposal (RFP) that will work for almost any event; it outlines your needs and expectations to the caterer while allowing them the freedom to try to impress you with the proposal they create for your event.
Name of Event - Type of Event (Reception, Seated Dinner, etc.)
Provide a brief description of the event, including who your guests are and what the overall goal of the event is. This will help the caterer come up with a menu that compliments the overall feel of your event.
Time: 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Location: 1060 W. Addison
Number of Guests: 50 - 60
Light hors d’oeuvres (including dessert selections) to be passed and on a buffet. Beverages to include coffee, tea, water, and a selection of sodas.
Set Up: TBD
Catering Preparation Area: TBD
Other Requirements/ Notes:
Equipment delivery/pickup requirements TBD
Linen & floral arrangements will need to be discussed and determined.
Tables & chairs must be provided by the caterer.
After filling in the information specific to your event, send the RFP via email to at least two or three caterers. Set a due date for the proposals (I typically give 10 - 14 days for a simple request for a small event, more time for a larger, more complex request), and be sure to set aside some time to review all of the proposals. At that point, you have successfully created and submitted your requests for catering proposals!
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