Whether you are hosting a large conference, a networking session or a small-scale event, it’s always important to get the catering choices right, otherwise your event could be remembered for all the wrong reasons. Take a look at our top tips.
1. Venue space
The first thing to consider is the venue. Does it have space for catering? Do they have their own in-house event catering service, as we do? This can often take the hassle out of finding an external reputable catering company. It’s also a good idea to check that the venue you have selected has the right style of catering space available. For example, if you are planning a sit down breakfast, there needs to be space for tables and chairs for all delegates. If you are planning a drinks reception, less space may be required but some high tables may come in handy for attendees to rest their glasses.
2. Type of event
It’s also important to match your catering to the type of event you are hosting. A networking session could take on the format of either a sit-down breakfast or drinks and canapés. It is also worth considering the number of guests you have and how you are organising your event. If you are planning a full day’s conference, refreshments in the morning and afternoon are a good idea to break the day up and provide delegates with a pick-me-up. A light buffet lunch would work well and would avoid the ‘afternoon slump’ that a heavy meal could induce!
3. Event catering for all tastes
A range of food and drink options should be considered, after all it would be impossible to try and suit everyone’s tastes with one meal. If you’re providing alcoholic refreshments, make sure to include soft drinks too such as water, juice or coffee. Buffet lunches and breakfasts are a good way of catering for a variety of different preferences. We recommend sending a question about food preferences and allergies on all event invitations, that way you can ensure you provide vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options if your delegates require this.