Planning an event can be tricky, if you are not a seasoned event planner. Therefore, for most couples, planning a wedding reception can be difficult at times if the wedding reception “lingo” is not explained in full. Lingo is defined as: the special vocabulary of a particular field of interest….and there are definitely terms used by wedding reception venues and professionals that may not be fully understood. Some of the most common miss-understood terms are:

1. Plus-Plus (++): this refers to the addition of service charge and sales tax. You will usually hear wedding professionals use this term in the following context: “The prices listed in our menus start at $22.00 plus-plus.” This means that you will need to add the service charge and then the sales tax in order to get your ending price for each item.

2. Inclusive: this refers to a price that already includes service charge and sales tax. You will want to be sure to ask if the room rental cost is inclusive, as some venues will add service charge to their room rental and not advise you of this.

3. Food & Beverage Minimum: the minimum dollar amount that must be reached in food and or hosted beverage for your event.

4. Hosted Beverages: hosted beverages means you will be paying for the drink (usually alcoholic drinks) for your guests. This can refer to drinks hosted during a cocktail hour, wine with dinner, or kegs for the evening.

5. Plated Meals: plated means your guests will be seated at a table and the meals will be brought out (served) to each guest. Plated meals are usually the most economical option, as the venue is able to control the portion sizes.

6. High-Tops: referring to tall cocktail tables, without seating. Usually placed near the bar or in area where guests will be socializing or standing.

7. Pre-Set: items that will be existing on the tables prior to dinner service. Pre-setting can be great to help speed the process of dinner service if necessary. Some items that are typically pre-set are: iced tea, water, dinner salads, or dessert.

8. Dual Entrée: a plated dinner with two (2) entrees on the same plate. An example would be doing a beef and seafood plate.

9. Guarantee: the lowest number of guests/meals that you will be responsible for paying for usually required 3 working days prior to the event date. The guarantee number can be increased, however it can not be decreased….as the venue orders food based on this number.

Always be sure to ask questions if you are doubtful of something or do not understand a certain term used by a wedding reception venue. The lingo can definitely be puzzling at times, and you do not want to assume you understand something that could very well be something totally different than you anticipated.

– Jill Hericks | Sales Manager | 605-367-4156 | Sioux Falls Convention Center

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