How do you know which event catering company is right for you? By asking questions! Here are some critical ones to start off with:
- "What credentials do you have?" How long has the event planning company served Bay Area clients? Can they show you verifiable testimonials and references? Have they established solid relationships with reputable vendors?
- "What all do you do -- and what don't you do?" If you're hiring "just a caterer," don't be surprised if you don't get lighting, music and all the other design elements that make an event an immersive experience, as we mention in "Elements of Event Design." Also, be aware that certain necessary details may not come with the service. For instance, does your event planner handle invitations, or will you be left holding that particular bag?
- "What can I realistically expect on my budget?" Unless money is no object, you need to ask your event planner how much bang you'll get for your buck. How stringent is the company at following the maximum numbers you set? Do you need to include some wiggle room based on your event planner's recommendations? Will your event planner fight to get you the best deals from vendors?
- "How much involvement can I expect to have?" If you want to be involved in the planning and execution of your event, ask whether there's room for you in the mix. If you'd rather hand the entire process over the event planner, then make sure the company is ready, willing and able to handle that load.
The more questions you ask, the more likely you are to get exactly what you want. We welcome your inquiries, because we want your event to exceed all expectations. So ask our San Francisco event catering company -- we have the answers!