This weeks #WeddingWednesday tip is feeding your vendors.
I know, I know, your venue is charging $36.50 a plate and you have 12 vendors to feed…yikes! But here’s the deal; without your vendors, your wedding day would not be possible.
Think about it for a second, your vendors are working, for the most part, all day. I’m talking about the ones who are around for the whole day. Like your photographer, your videographer, your DJ, and your wedding planner. And these vendors might have a team with them to make the wedding magic happen. This is like the second photographer, your wedding planners staff, the DJ assistants, etc.
You don’t need to feed every vendor. Your florist, baker, officiant and other vendors who are around for the ceremony don’t need to eat dinner at the reception because they won’t be there.
So why should you feed your vendors?
Your wedding planner might be a full-scale ring to reception planner or a day of coordinator. Either way, they have invested a lot of time and effort into making sure your wedding goes off without a hitch. And they’re good at navigating any hitches that might come up. The point is, your wedding planner will be there all day on your wedding day and they will need to eat.
I’m not saying you need to provide breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But providing your planner, and their team, with a guest meal, should be something you plan for.
Photographers & Videographers
Photographers and videographers are other vendors who are with you most of the day. From the getting ready photos to the dancing, they’re capturing your entire wedding day, and you want them on their game. I always bring a little ice chest with water and some snacks, but granola bars only get me so far. By the time the meal rolls around, I’m starving (and this might be me) so feeding me makes my heart happy. Also, it’s in my contract to feed me and my team, because we run around all day following the bride and groom. We love it, but we need food, too.
DJ & Team
Are you ready? Because your DJ needs to have the energy to even get the party started! This vendor is the hype man for your wedding day, so please feed them! They can put on some background music while guests shuffle through the buffet line. You’re eating around 6:30-7pm typically, and your guests might party until midnight (I know Trevor and I did). Feed your DJ so they can party late night with you too!
So, what kind of meal should your vendors get?
There’s mixed info about this, so you should check your individual contracts with your vendors. My contract for my couples states that we get a guest meal. We don’t need to have a seat complete with a hand calligraphy place card and a wedding favor. (Although I won’t say no to custom bride and groom cookies or whatever cool favor you chose.) But, a guest meal in the kitchen for 20 minutes is perfect. Talk to your vendors though. If you want to order 3 pizzas for the team and save your money per plate- they may be fine with that too. I mean, I’m obsessed with pizza so that would be a-ok with me!
For the record…Me N Ed’s Hot Hawaiian (without the jalapenos) is my favorite. I know you were wondering.
Be sure that if you’re ordering food, it arrives during the scheduled time for your vendors to eat a hot meal. Nobody wants pizza that’s been sitting out since 3:30. This is why I request a guest meal because we know it’ll be fresh and ready when dinner is being served to the guests. Be conscious of the option you choose so your vendors don’t feel like they’re an afterthought. A meal might not seem like a big deal, but it’s a small way to show your vendors you appreciate all the work they’re putting into your wedding day.
When should the vendors eat?
The best time for me is before the buffet line starts or while the guest plates are being served. I’ve been to several weddings where they set up a table in the back or in the kitchen. This is where the vendors can eat while the guests are still funneling through the lines or are being served. It works perfectly. You don’t have to spend the extra time adding another table to the reception layout and they can sneak off to the back real quick to eat.
I have found that it’s best to arrange your vendors to eat first thing before any guests start bogging down the line. That way they’ll be in and out of the line and done eating by the time guests are wrapping up the end of the buffet line. This works out so your photographer, videographer, planner, and DJ can be ready for the toasts, speeches and dances.
I hope you’ve found this weeks #WeddingWednesday tips to be helpful! And yes, I do accept pizza as a meal…it is it’s own food group after all!