The catering service invoice is sent to a client before or after an event has been properly supplied with food, drinks, and staff to serve the guests.
Table of Contents
- What is Catering?
- Catering Events
- Catering Types
- Does a Caterer Need to be Licensed?
- Caterer Salary & Hourly Rate ($/hr)
Catering is the act of an individual or company providing food and drinks to an event such as a wedding, company banquet, or another occasion such as a birthday party. If the food is to be made on-site, the caterer will be responsible for hiring the chef as well as servers to distribute the food, most typically by walking around the space and approaching guests.
A client will usually request a caterer long before an event, giving them enough time to make necessary arrangements. For smaller events, two (2) days to a week should suffice, but for extensive events such as a wedding, the caterer may need two (2) weeks to a month to assemble what is needed.
- Corporate Event
- Family Reunion
- Holiday Party
- Wedding (most popular)
- Bento (sushi-style)
- Food Truck
- Full Service (most popular)
- Office Catering
Whether a caterer needs to be licensed depends entirely on how they prepare and supply the event with food and drinks.
- Required – If a caterer prepares the food themselves, a license is required in all 50 States. The caterer will be required to apply through their local municipality and State while also registering with the FDA (effective December 12, 2003, CPG Sec. 110.300)
- Not Required – If the caterer is to be acting as the middle-person and providing food that is prepared to serve, then a license is not required.
- Required – If the caterer is to be serving alcoholic beverages, a license is required. Obtaining a liquor license is not easy in most States and will require hefty fees and a thorough background check.
- Not Required – If the caterer is to be serving non-alcoholic beverages, a license is not required. The caterer can simply purchase soda and juice drinks from a wholesaler or Sam’s club and re-sell to the host of the event.
Salary: $34,861 (source: glassdoor)
Hourly Rate: $12.26/hr (source: payscale)