San Francisco area coastal wedding destinations

Reception Alternatives – Half Moon Bay – Coastside

Written by Terry Plank on . Posted in Wedding Tips

Your wedding day can be very costly, but there are ways to make your wedding day more affordable by taking a less traditional approach to your reception arrangements.

We often think that a wedding reception must be an elaborate affair in a private room with a sit-down dinner, drinks, dancing, and a photographer booked for most of the reception.

A private room can cost from $500.00 – $2000.00 dependent on the location and some restaurants have a minimum food service charge. You may not be having a large enough group to warrant paying that minimum food charge.

An option to reduce the cost of a reception is to have a dinner reception at a local restaurant that isn’t in a private room and make it a luncheon or dinner meal for your guests where a minimum or room charge may not apply. The Half Moon Bay Chamber of Commerce is a great resource for restaurants in the Half Moon Bay area if you choose that option.Be sure when you call the restaurant you start by explaining that you are calling regarding a reception meal, but it doesn’t have to be in a private room.

If you don’t have a private room then music and dancing would not be an option, so you can further reduce your reception costs.

A photographer for the reception can cost an additional $800.00 – $2000.00 for their time at the reception. Instead of hiring a photographer for the wedding ceremony and reception, just ask a close friend to take pictures at the reception. You can also purchase good quality disposable cameras for the table/s and ask your guests to take random shots throughout your meal.

You might be thinking, “Well, it is important to me to have a professional photographer for the cake cutting “ceremony”.To accomplish this you can hire the photographer for an hour of the reception only and upon your arrival have a “mock” cake cutting to capture the moment and then have your friends take additional shots during the actual cake cutting later.

Everyone is looking for ways to make their wedding day more affordable and special, so I will continue to provide ideas for making your wedding day arrangements with cost saving ideas that you may not have considered.

Best Regards,


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