Catering Agreement Template

The last thing you want to worry about is tedious paperwork with so many moving parts to a catering business. That’s why we’ve worked with legal experts to create a simple catering contract (PDF and Word) to save you time, money, and hassle as you scale your business.

Catering Contract Template (Free Sample)

The last thing you want to worry about is tedious paperwork with so many moving parts to a catering business. That’s why we’ve worked with legal experts to create a simple catering contract (PDF and Word) to save you time, money, and hassle as you scale your business.
What’s in this template?
  • • List of services provided
  • • Event dates
  • • Payment terms
Get access to our catering contract sample

What is a catering contract?

Caterers are responsible for providing food, drinks, and hospitality services at events ranging from business functions to extravagant weddings and everything in between.
Caterers have unique skills and contacts to charge clients for their food and beverage services.
A catering contract is a formal agreement between caterer and client for which terms and conditions are established for the work to be carried out at an event.

Download our Catering Contract Today

Hopefully, after reading this post, you can see that a catering contract is not only a formality in your business but can also be used as a sales tool to grow your income.
Click below to get a copy of our catering contract agreement

Why is a catering contract important?

Catering and event planning are time-sensitive businesses where they may need to depend on suppliers. Contractors and employees to execute on their clients’ vision. This means lots of planning and collaboration with third-parties to make the catering project a success.
A catering contract is essential for ensuring that caterers get paid for their services timely so they can pay for any expenses related to the event.
An agreement also holds all parties accountable for creating a fantastic experience for attendees.
Without a catering contract, payments can be missed, deadlines may not be met, and clients could walk away, disappointed by the overall experience.

How to use a catering agreement to get more clients

It may not seem obvious, but a standard catering contract is a powerful document that can be used to grow your income. Below are three examples of how you can get the most out of your template.

1. Improve your customer intake system

A catering contract is a critical document that turns a prospect into a paying client. So it’s essential to understand the best moment to introduce your agreement while maintaining a healthy relationship with potential clients.
Perhaps without realizing, your catering business has a client intake process, which looks something like this:
  • 1. Respond to inquiry
  • 2. Book a consultation
  • 3. Conduct client consultation
  • 4. Send proposal
  • 5. Send receipt
  • 6. Start project
Let’s back for a second to step four. After your client consultation, it’s common practice to send a proposal that highlights all how you can help deliver the best possible catering service at an event.
However, a proposal by itself is not enough to get new clients. That’s why it’s a good idea to include a copy of your catering agreement with your proposal.
By presenting both a catering proposal and contract, your potential clients will have all of the information they need to learn about how you work, and if they’re comfortable, they sign your contract to lock in their selection.
You can also use your contract as a reference document to follow up on clients who are still interviewing caterers for their projects. You could ask, “I’m just following up to see if you had any questions about our proposal and contract?”
From there, clients may open up about their concerns about the timeframe, price, or the type of food you included in your pitch. This allows you to get on the same page and ultimately increase your chances of winning the business.

2. Managing cash flow and projections

Getting your catering contract signed is the moment a prospect becomes a client. As a paid professional, it’s incredibly motivating to see your pile of contracts grow, as it means you’re getting consistent work.
As we’ve established, the catering business requires lots of planning as jobs can be booked months sometimes years in advance.
The cyclical and volatile nature of catering work makes it hard to manage your cash flow as there may be extended periods where you don’t have any income coming in.
We suggest you organize your contacts into two piles:
  • 1. Contracts
  • 2. Pending contracts
Your contracts pile is your signed agreements and a representation of your future income.
Your pending contracts pile are all of the contracts you’ve sent to potential clients but haven’t heard back from them.
Once you’ve organized your piles, you can start tracking your pipeline income and potential deals. You can do this manually, or track it in a simple spreadsheet.
Perhaps the greatest opportunity to do this is to be aware of your pending contracts and develop a follow-up process to increase your chances of getting those contracts signed.
If your customer chose to go with another caterer, see if you can find our why so you can improve your proposals and offerings.

3. Payment terms and cancellations

So much of the success of your catering business depends on how you manage your cancellations. Clients will change their mind for whatever reason and want to end your contract before the event start date.
The more cancellations you have, the more income you lose. Not only do you miss out on client fees, but you also don’t get the time back from communicating with suppliers, meal planning, and other administrative tasks.
Use your contract to enforce non-refundable deposits. Having clients sign off on this clause will help you retain some of your lost income while reducing canceled events.

Download our Catering Contract Today

Hopefully, after reading this post, you can see that a catering contract is not only a formality in your business but can also be used as a sales tool to grow your income.
Click below to get a copy of our catering contract agreement
Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ about our Catering Contract Template

Catering agreements can be formed verbally, written, or other types of communication. However, a signed contract is legally binding and adds further protection and accountability for all parties.
We recognize that agreements may need to be modified depending on the needs of your client event. That’s why our template is available in Word so you can make changes as required.
Like any agreement, you can terminate a catering contract when the work is completed, a party breaches the conditions, or all parties agree to terminate the contract.
document preview

Catering Agreement

Catering Agreement

Parties

– This Catering Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the “Agreement”) is entered into on ______________ (the “Effective Date”), by and between __________________________, with an address of ______________ (hereinafter referred to as the “Client”) and with an address of ______________ (hereinafter referred to as the “Caterer”) (collectively referred to as the “Parties”).

Services Provided

– Hereby, the Caterer agrees to provide the services enlisted below (hereinafter referred to as the “Services”):
  1. ______________________
  2. ______________________
  3. ______________________
  4. ______________________
  5. ______________________
  6. ______________________
  7. ______________________
  8. ______________________
– The Parties agree that the Services must be completed by ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________.

Event Date

– The event will occur on ______________ starting at ____________________ and will end at ___________________.
– It will be located at ___________________ .

Contact Information

– The Client’s telephone number ______________ .
– The Client’s email address ______________ .
– Other necessary and relevant phone numbers and email addresses ______________.

Cancellation

– The Parties agree that in case the Client cancels this Agreement prior to the event, he/she will be entitled to a refund of the monies paid except for the n-refundable deposit made.
– The Parties agree that in case the Caterer cancels this Agreement, he/she will be required to provide a suitable replacement photographer that the Client consents to.

Payment

– Hereby, the Parties agree that the payment of the Services will be made on ____________________ and that the total fees for the Services is ____________________.
– The Parties agree that a non-refundable deposit amounting to _____________________ will be made upon the execution of this Agreement.
– The Parties agree that the means of payment will be via _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ .

Indemnity And Insurance

– The Parties hereby agree to hold one another harmless as well as defend, indemnify and hold their officers, officials, employees and volunteers harmless from any and all claims, injuries, damages, losses or suits including attorney fees, arising out of or resulting from the acts, errors or omissions in performance of this Agreement, except for injuries and damages caused by the sole negligence of one of the Parties.
– The section will remain in force even upon the termination of this Agreement.

Dispute Resolution

– Any dispute or difference whatsoever arising out of or in connection with this Agreement shall be submitted to ______________ (Arbitration/mediation/negotiation) in accordance with, and subject to the laws of ______________.

Governing Law

– This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of ______________.

Severability

– In an event where any provision of this Agreement is found to be void and unenforceable by a court of competent jurisdiction, then the remaining provisions will remain to be enforced in accordance with the Parties’ intention.

Entire Agreement

– This Agreement contains the entire agreement and understanding among the Parties hereto with respect to the subject matter hereof, and supersedes all prior agreements, understandings, inducements and conditions, express or implied, oral or written, of any nature whatsoever with respect to the subject matter hereof. The express terms hereof control and supersede any course of performance and/or usage of the trade inconsistent with any of the terms hereof.

Amendments

– The Parties agree that any amendments made to this Agreement must be in writing where they must be signed by both Parties to this Agreement.
– As such, any amendments made by the Parties will be applied to this Agreement.

Signature And Date

– The Parties hereby agree to the terms and conditions set forth in this Agreement and such is demonstrated throughout their signatures below:
Client
Name: ______________________
Signature: ___________________
Date: _______________________
Caterer
Name: ______________________
Signature: ___________________
Date: _______________________

Download our Catering Contract Today

Hopefully, after reading this post, you can see that a catering contract is not only a formality in your business but can also be used as a sales tool to grow your income.
Click below to get a copy of our catering contract agreement
Download Catering Agreement Doc
Download Catering Agreement PDF