Wedding Receptions: Lunch vs. Dinner
As many couples are beginning to shy away from the more traditional, evening wedding receptions, lunch receptions are increasing in popularity. Although preference can be a determining factor, there are pros and cons to both.
An advantage to the evening wedding reception is that there are several different catering options. You may choose a sit-down dinner, a buffet, or simply appetizers. Many times the food and alcohol costs are balanced based on the type of reception and the general demographic of the guests invited. Also, if you are wanting a more traditional wedding and reception, this is definitely the direction you will want to go. The atmosphere will be much more intimate and formal. The down side? Typically, dinner is considerably more expensive. Not only is the food itself pricier, but the table service (staff) requirements are higher and the alcohol bill can climb quickly!
A lunch reception, on the other hand, will be less expensive on all accounts. You can have similar food as at a dinner reception in smaller portions (and at a smaller price tag!). In addition, you’re likely to spend less on alcohol as people tend to drink less earlier in the day. This type of reception will be a bit more subdued than an evening one, which can be a pro or con depending on your preference. Consider, however, that the time of day may effect your attendance, as it can be more difficult for guests, especially traveling, to make it on time. There may also be less time for photographs at the end. On the other hand, since the event will be over by evening, the bride and groom would have enough time to leave for their honeymoon the same day if they choose to do so.
As you can see, there are benefits and drawbacks to both day time and evening receptions. Consider your budget, the atmosphere you desire, but most importantly your personal preference. After all, it is a once in a lifetime experience…we hope!