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How many glasses and plate settings will I need for my party ?

How many glasses and plate settings will I need for my party ?

Planning a big event? A question we often hear is “how many glasses and plate settings will I need for my guests?”

When it comes to figuring out what you’ll need, you may have to do some math. Don’t worry, its really not as complicated as one would thing think.  It takes knowing the group of invitees that will be attending and understanding what type of event you are hosting.  

If the partygoers are made up of some or all children, fewer dishes and glasses are required for the event. If your gathering is mainly adults, you’ll need to consider a few key factors in order to help you determine your final tally.  

A few variables to consider:

  • Will you be offering a champagne toast?
  • Will you have an open bar and be serving mixed drinks?
  • Is this a sit down lunch or dinner event?
  • Or perhaps a buffet?

All of these factors play a huge role in determining the overall number of plates and glasses you will need. 

Glass Rentals 

If you are serving wine and beer your guests may hold on to their glasses for a little while longer; however you will always have to account for your guests misplacing their glasses and looking for a new one.  

With an open bar, each time one of your guests walk up for a drink, a new glass will be used.   This can cause your glass supply to diminish a lot quicker with the pouring of each drink. 

The rule of thumb is close to 1.5 drinks per person, per hour.  If you have been to a party or event where you were having a grand old time, then you would know how quickly the bar turns drinks around. If this is the type of event where drinks will be flowing than that glass per person estimate may be a bit higher.

Dish Rentals

Calculating for dishes?  The general rule of thumb is 1.25-1.50 of extra place settings per person, including  appetizers/salad/main course/dessert, etc.  

Buffets generally use more dishes than sit down dinners, and sit down dinners are usually more easily equated for than buffets.  Why you may ask? Because with buffets your guests may go up for food more than once or twice; taking a new plate each and every time they are on line.

If dishes and glasses are dirty and there is no way to clean them at your event, ordering extra is always the better case scenario.  You would never want someone to go hungry or feel forgotten about during an event that you put so much time and effort in to. Over ordering is a definite must in this situation! Over order to ensure you are truly prepared. 

There really are a lot of variables to consider when coming up with the final numbers for your next party and consulting with a party planner is truly in your best interest to ensure a memorable and smooth event.

One of our party planners at A-Z would be more than happy to help guide you through the whole process; from A-Z.  Click here to start planning! 


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