Deposit for booking Event Dates

La Jolie Chef

Formerly 'Sabrina Wilson'
10
0
Joined Jun 22, 2018
What is consensus of opinion on this? Charging a nonrefundable deposit in order to book/ hold a date for a Client's function be it a Catering gig or a Cooking Class/ Dinner Party.
And regarding Gratuity, do you state in the contract,a 20% gratuity is appreciated?

Thanks for feedback
 
4,555
785
Joined Aug 21, 2004
Charging a nonrefundable deposit in order to book/ hold a date for a Client's function be it a Catering gig or a Cooking Class/ Dinner Party.
yes, but with stipulation that if a comparable event can be booked for same time slot and date, after cancellation, I will refund deposit

do you state in the contract,a 20% gratuity is appreciated?
no, either include a service charge or don't, but never mention gratuity
 

La Jolie Chef

Formerly 'Sabrina Wilson'
10
0
Joined Jun 22, 2018
yes, but with stipulation that if a comparable event can be booked for same time slot and date, after cancellation, I will refund deposit

no, either include a service charge or don't, but never mention gratuity
Cheflayne, Thank you for feedback. So you just customarily have in your contract a line that states Service Charge? Is it a percentage of the cost whole gig? How do you or do you explain this to client?
 
926
545
Joined Mar 1, 2017
The service charge is typically a percentage of the cost of the contract. The service charge is intended to fray the cost of back end expenses such as employees, insurance, rentals, napkins, linens etc and other expenses required to make the event happen, other than the cost of food. How much that is depends largely on the amount of your overhead. A service charge is not a gratuity nor is it part of any taxes that must be charged by law. The percentage usually varies from place to place. Typically, however, it can range anywhere from 18% to as much as 45%. Again, it all depends on how much your overhead is.

How you explain this to your client is simple. You explain to them the number of employees required to provide excellent service, what it costs you in terms of overhead (how detailed you are with this is up to you), and explain that the service charge does not include such things as gratuity or taxes.

Good luck. :)
 
601
223
Joined May 25, 2015
I wouldn't mention a service charge or gratuity at all. Certainly figure it into your price but only give the bottom line to your client. The more information you give them, the more ammunition they have to dicker about the price.

... yes, but with stipulation that if a comparable event can be booked for same time slot and date, after cancellation, I will refund deposit.
Problem with that is it's on you to prove that you couldn't book a comparable event which can easily lead to allegations that you are lying, didn't try hard enough, etc. Not a good position to get into especially with social media these days. Better just to require a deposit that becomes non-refundable if the client cancels within 2 weeks of the event. This way there is no question and it's on the client 100%.
 

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