Look at everything

Folks, 
 
This is probably one of my most important morsels to date so I encourage every to read this and follow it.
 
When you are doing site selections be sure to ask for copies of the menus. Why? Because planners tend to overlook proper negotiation  when it comes to banqueting. Sure many negotiate a 10% discount, comp’ing bartender fees or even throwing in a couple of chef’s for free.  But with the economy being down there are  many additional charges being added to banqueting. Unless you are getting the menus and studying them before making your final decision you have NO WAY of knowing what hidden “bombs” there are in each hotels menu package.  The only way to make sure is read a copy of their current menus to make sure you are negotiating everything you need and want prior to signing the contract.  Keep in mind many times people are T & E’ing their room nights not their banquet meals. So missing this all important step can really cause budget problems later  when you get into the details of planning an event.  Here is an example of this at a hotel in Arizona. Where their average buffet lunch check is $56.00 per person inclusive. You only get your food for 1 hour w/o additional charge and if you only have 40 people you can get charged up to an additional $10.00 per person. Which basically tells you they aren’t interested in having smaller groups.  Here is a sample of one of their less expensive simple menus –
 
Luncheon Buffets
Picnic Buffet
Creamy Celery Seed Cole Slaw
Baby Field Greens with Carrots, Cucumbers and Cherry Tomatoes
Chef’s Selection of 2 Dressings
Bow Tie Pasta Salad Primavera
German Potato Salad
Sangria Splashed Fresh Fruit Salad
Individual Bags of Chips
Choice of Three Pre-Made Sandwiches:
*Roast Beef with Boursin, Frisée and Red Onion on Focaccia
*Chicken Club Wrap with Applewood Smoked Bacon, White Cheddar and Tomatoes
*Sliced Turkey Panini with Pesto Mayonnaise and Yellow Tomatoes on Ciabatta
*Portobello Mushrooms with Shaved Fennel, Tomatoes, Peppers,
Sprouts with Balsamic Vinaigrette on an Oatmeal wheat roll
Coconut Diamonds, Fruit Tarts, Fudge Brownies, and Cookies
Freshly Brewed Regular and Decaffeinated Coffees, Hot or Iced Teas
$38.00 per person
Pricing based on minimum of 50 guests
For 35 – 49 guests, add $10.00 per person
Each additional hour of service, add $12.50 per person
This is my story for now and I am sticking to it.
 

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