Wedding Food On A Budget

wedding marquee hire

Weddings are renowned for being pricey. Not everyone can afford to splash out on appetisers decorated with gold leaf and expensive bottles of champagne, but this certainly doesn’t mean you can’t have an amazing day celebrating a new chapter in your life with the ones you love the most! For most weddings, the catering will often take up the largest percentage of the budget, so saving money on this part of the wedding will cut down your overall cost considerably. Here are a few money-saving tips to use when planning your perfect wedding, that doesn’t compromise on your day’s fun!

Buffet or potluck

Having a buffet helps you control your spending cost by cutting out the middle man. By paying for a professional caterer, you are not only paying for the food but the labour of making it too. By sourcing your own ingredients and having family and friends help you, you’ll be able to make your own menu at less than half the price. We recommend filling the buffet with cheap but versatile ingredients, such as vegetables, pita bread and hummus, along with various other dips, and only serving a small number of delicacies like meat and fish. 

If you’re planning a buffet, you could also ask guests to bring their own dish to place on the buffet, in replacement of a wedding gift. Boost the appearance of your simple buffet with themed serving stations and clearly labelled dishes to control the flow of the serving station. There are a few cost-effective and filling dishes that work well for a buffet, such as:

  • Sandwiches
  • Lasagne 
  • Pasta dishes, e.g. Mac and Cheese
  • Fajitas
  • Pizza

There are many options you could go for, without breaking the bank!

BYOD or bulk buy

For most table service wedding venues, the alcohol is pricey and more expensive than the food itself. Try finding a venue which allows you to bring your own drinks, so you don’t have to buy drinks that have been marked up to make a profit. Buy more wine and beer than spirits to keep costs low and we recommend creating your own signature mocktail for all the guests to try, reducing the amount they drink during the reception. 

Wedding cake

Having a wedding cake is a tradition and almost everyone has one. Although this is a common feature of weddings, many people usually offer different pudding options along with the wedding cake. Depending on the size of the cake and guest list, you may be able to just serve the wedding cake for dessert. You could even get different flavoured cake layer sponges so the guests still have variety when it comes to the dessert. To save even more cash, try having a smaller wedding cake and serving some sponge sheet cake slices to the majority of the guests, still just as tasty as the wedding cake!


Haggling with the price of services comes with the wedding industry, so it’s worth asking for a lower price; who knows — you might get yourself a considerable discount! If you’re planning on using a catering service, remember to ask for a kids discount, as many caterers offer a greatly reduced price for under 16s. If you’re already using a lot of services from one provider, try to get a few services for free as you’re already spending a lot of money with them. 


Whatever you have in mind for your special day, there is plenty of ways to cut corners to stay within your budget. Consider choosing a venue that allows you total flexibility with what you can do with your day. You may want food to be prepared and served by a professional catering service but buy and set up your own bar. We suggest looking at some of our marquees, as we offer a wide range of choices and are happy to set it up and remove it as needed. 


If you’re looking for the perfect venue for your wedding, our marquee hire service will make it a day to remember. We have a wealth of experience in the industry, serving customers throughout Exeter, Taunton, Barnstaple, Tiverton, Ilfracombe, Minehead and the surrounding areas to a high standard. For more information on our products and services, please get in touch with a member of our team today. 


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