Line them up or sit them down?
Planning your wedding dinner bascially boils down to two choices: a sit down meal or a buffet style serving.
Each has their ups and downs, and which route to take typically depends on a number of factors.
• Degree of formality: Formal weddings often call for a sit-down meal, as it’s generally viewed as more elegant. But this doesn’t exclude the buffet-style option from formal weddings.
At more laid back, but still formal, weddings a buffet-style meal is perfectly acceptable.
For weddings that aren’t as formal, it’s generally best (and less expensive) to offer a buffet style meal.
• The guest list: The global nature of the world today means friends and family are spread out more than ever.
If a wedding guest list features many guests who have flown or traveled from afar, it might be more appropriate to offer a more relaxed, sit down meal.
The age of guests should be considered as well before deciding on a meal option.
If there will be lots of elderly people or even guests with young children, it’s probably easier on them to offer a sit down meal.
For weddings that boast a particularly young guest list, a buffet style might encourage more mingling and allow those guests to meet one another a lot easier than a sit down meal would.
• Budget: Buffet-style meals are generally less expensive, but this isn’t always the case. Some think a sit-down meal will cost more because a wait staff is required to serve the food and drinks. While this is true to an extent, buffet-style meals still require a staff on hand to replace food that has run out.
In addition, the time of day of the reception plays a role as well. For example, a buffet-style lunch will not be nearly as expensive as a buffet-style dinner.
In general, though, a buffet at a wedding is almost always more budget-friendly than a sit down, typically costing far less per plate.
• Flexibility: Guest lists are often unique, with each guest having particular preferences when it comes to food. This makes buffets an especially attractive option. Sit down meals can be very limiting, which won’t bode well for picky eaters.
A buffet, however, offers many selections, and chances are even the pickiest of eaters will find something they can devour.