Should you treat your wedding guests a plated dinner or let them choose from a variety of options with a buffet? There are benefits to both so we picked the brains of wedding planners -who have seen dozens of receptions and meal styles – to tell us which option is best. Here’s what the pros said:
Marisa Manna Ferrell from So Eventful
Plated dinner service is nice because everyone at the table gets their food at the same time. Also, with a plated dinner you can spread out toasts and/or incorporate dances during the courses to keep the guests engaged. Buffet dinner service is a most cost effective way to dine your guests. Buffet requires less staff, which means lower costs. Buffet offers a variety of food selections for your guests.
Photo by Onelove Photography
Rebecca Calagna of Rebecca Calagna Events
When deciding between plated dinner or buffet for your reception, there are a few things you should take into consideration. First, what is the overall style and feel of your wedding? Are you having a black tie, formal event or a more casual, laid back affair? Plated table service is the most formal while a buffet-style meal brings some casualness. Second, a plated dinner can save you money on food cost, but you will pay more for service. A buffet dinner will most likely save you costs on both service and food. It also gives your guests control of the portion of the meal they would enjoy. Lastly, ask yourself which type of meal you prefer; Are you a more formal or more laid back? One choice is not better than another. You will need to take into consideration budget, guest expectations and your personal preferences.
Priscilla Erwin of Orangerie Events
Photo by Graham Terhune
Have more wedding planning questions like this one? We’re here to help! Should you have an open bar? What about a day-of coordinator?
10 responses to “Wedding Planning Tips: Buffet vs. Plated Dinner”
Love the idea of doing family style – it’s the best of both worlds!
We did a buffet for our wedding and it worked perfect! It kept the guests busy and helped with the flow
Great advice! I always thought a plated dinner was super classy!
Plated dinners are just so classy, but buffets are great too!! So hard to choose.
I have always wondered what is best for weddings, so thank you! Great advice!
You are very welcome!
We totally agree!
Love it!!! 🙂
Right!?! Thanks for the comment Mackenzie!