WRITING A STRONG CATERING PROPOSAL LETTER (WITH SAMPLE)

What is a Catering Proposal Letter? The letter is a quote for the services the caterer wants to provide a prospective client. A caterer creates the letter after a preliminary meeting with the prospective client to provide the person with a specific price and service agreement

Steps For Composing A Proposal Letter:

1. A Cover Letter

The first section of a proposal letter is a cover letter that is a brief summary of the services, including the name of the event and its date, time and location. It also should include the minimum guest count guarantee. In addition, the cover letter needs to contain a brief overview of services that the caterer will provide for the event.

2. Menu Items And Charges

Next section of the proposal letter includes the specific food and beverage items that the prospective client has chosen and the charges for the items. The caterer should list appetizers, salads, breads, entrees and desserts unless the caterer offers combination deals. 

3. Additional Charges

Charges in this section include rental prices for linens, centerpieces, silverware, dinnerware, serving dishes and more. The caterer should list prices per item or similar groups of items. In addition, the caterer needs to list all labor costs for delivery and the staff necessary to perform all required contractual tasks. Cost for labor is typically an hourly amount times the number of hours and staff members. 

4. Total Quote

The total quote is simply a list of all the charges for each section above and the grand total. A caterer also may include a deposit amount to begin the preparations for the event. 

5. Explanation Of Policies

Catering policies involve the minimum count requirement for guests, guarantee of services, acceptable forms and terms of payment and any other specifics that the caterer deems necessary for the prospective client to agree to in this written proposal letter. 

6. Signature And Payment

In this area, the caterer should place a statement of agreement from the client’s perspective and a line for his or her signature. On top of this, an area for the client’s payment information should be below this section. 

Sample Catering Proposal Letter

[Catering Company Letterhead]

Date

Name of Client
Address of Client
Phone Number of Client

Dear [Client’s Name],

[Catering company’s name] is looking forward to providing food items and other services to you and your event guests. Our company will provide [list any pertinent services] for your event. 

Please read over the proposal letter for [Name of Event] that will be on [Date] at [Time AM or PM] for a period of [number of hours] at [Name of Venue] at [Address of Venue] to see if you agree with our company’s quote for a minimum guest guarantee of 20 [list other number when necessary]. 

Respectfully yours,

[Printed Name of Caterer]
[Signature of Caterer]

Menu Items and Charges for a Minimum of 20 Guests 
1. Appetizers

[2 platters of stuffed mushrooms at $10.00 each for a total of $20.00] 

2. Salad and Salad Dressing

[4 bowls of tossed salad at $18.00 each for a total of $72.00.]

[2 carafes of Italian salad dressing at $5.50 per carafe for a total of $11.00.]

3. Bread

[4 dozen breadsticks at $5.00 per dozen for a total of $10.00.]

4. Entrees

[4 containers of Chicken Parmigiana at $40.00 per container that feeds 6 guests per container for a total of $160.00.]

5. Desserts

[20 individual servings of chocolate mousse at $40.00 total.]

6. Beverages

[5 gallons of raspberry tea at $5.00 per gallon for a total of $25.00.]

Additional Charges

[3 staff members for the event at $10.00 per hour for a period of 4 hours equal $120.00]

[Charges for dinnerware, silverware, and serving dish equal $90.00]

[Table linen rental equals $30.00]

[2 centerpieces at $10.00 each for a total of $20.00]

Final Quote

• Total for Menu Items is [$338.00]
• Total for Labor is [$120.00]
• Total for all other charges is [$140.00]
• Grand Total is [$598.00]
• Required 25% Deposit [$149.50]
• Balance Due 10 Days Prior to Event [$448.50]

Policies

Minimum Guest Count Guarantee

We calculate our quote with a minimum guest count guarantee in mind. If your guests number less, you will still pay for the minimum guests. On the other hand, if your guest list expands, your charges will increase. 

Time Frame

You agree with a set frame of time that your event will fill for our services. If our staff members are required to work longer, the labor charges will increase on your final bill. 

Deposit

A 25% deposit is payable upon acceptance of this proposal. The deposit is refundable only if you cancel 30 days prior to the event. After this date, no refund is possible as plans may already be enacted for your event. 

Payment Terms

Payments terms require you to pay a 25% deposit and that the balance has to be paid within 10 days of the date of the event. All additional costs incurred from higher guest counts, or additional staff hours will bill within 10 days after the event and will be payable upon receipt of bill. Collection actions will be taken when necessary to obtain payment of these charges. 

Signature and Payment Information

1. Signature 

By signing below I, [Name of Client], show that I agree with all elements of this proposal letter, including the company policies. 

[Signature of Client] [Date]

2. Payment Information

Payment to us can be made with cash, money order or check by submitting it to us at this time. To pay by credit card, fill out the form below:

Name on Card:
Type of Card: VISA, MasterCard, Discover
Account Number:
Expiration Date:

Thank you for letting [name of catering company] be of service to you. 

***Caterers only need to replace information between the [ ] to personalize each Catering Proposal Letter.