To help guide you in planning your catered event, below are some tips and questions for your consideration. We recommend placing your catering order request as early as possible, as advance notice ensures our ability to properly plan for your event.


If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to email us at or call 805-893-2114. The Campus Catering team looks forward to working with you!


  • What is the date, timing, and type of event you are planning? 
    • For example, are you planning a conference with multiple catering requests over the span of a few days? Are you planning a retirement dinner with a bar? Perhaps you are planning a small breakfast and lunch and want food and drinks dropped-off? This information will allow us a more detailed understanding of your event needs.
  • Have you secured a venue?
    • If you do not have a venue, please visit Event Spaces which may help you identify the ideal campus location for your event.
    • Once your venue is secured, we may recommend a walk-through of the site with a member of our team to confirm the set-up plan, and to discuss the event flow.
  • Does your venue include any equipment that may be used for catering, like tables and chairs? Or will items such as these need to be brought in?
  • Do you have an overall catering budget, or price per person that you must meet?
  • Do you have a desired catering menu, cuisine, or theme in mind for your event?  Please browse our delicious and creative Catering Menus. If these menu options are not what you had in mind, our talented chefs would be pleased to create a customized menu for your event.
    • When planning your menu, here are a few considerations:
    • Would you like a boxed, buffet, or plated meal?
    • Do you have any guests with dietary restrictions? Are you asking guests to provide this information prior to the event?
    • Would you like to offer beverages such as coffee, soda, lemonade, or full bar service?
  • Please consider these event day timeline questions:
    • How long prior to the event will the catering team have access to the venue? Our minimum for advance access is 45 minutes prior to the event start time, but some events may require additional set-up time. Will our set-up or breakdown activity interrupt a meeting in progress?
    • Should the food/beverage tables be located inside or outside of the meeting room? Have you considered how you would like food/beverage tables set up?

We look forward to coordinating the details with you, and guaranteeing a successful event!

Now that you have determined the basics for your event, here are some additional questions and details to consider that will help you plan your gathering from start to finish.

  1. Do you need any rental equipment for your event such as tables, chairs or linens? We are pleased to help arrange the rental needs for your event through UCSB Furniture Services, or through an outside rental vendor. Items we can help coordinate include but are not limited to, tables, glassware, china, cutlery, linens, floral & other decor.
  2. Please note that included in our standard service are 85”x85” black linens for all food and beverage tables, and compostable tableware. Clients may upgrade to rented specialty linen, china, glassware and cutlery for an enhanced event appearance.
  3. Would you like any floral decor for your event? We supply potted succulent arrangements at no additional cost for all events, but can coordinate specialty floral orders to elevate your event appearance.
  4. Would you like to have beer and wine served at your event? Please discuss this with one of our Sales Managers for more information.
  5. Will your event take place outdoors? Have you considered an inclement weather plan?
  6. Will your outdoor event continue after sunset and require lighting for ambiance and/or guest safety? Will your indoor event benefit from rented specialty lighting to highlight elements, or to set a specific mood?
  7. Are there any special instructions the catering team should be aware of? For example, do we need a specific key or code to access the location? Do you have any VIP guests? Are there delivery vehicle access considerations?
  8. For more elaborate events, we may request additional planning documents, such as an event timeline or agenda, a seating chart, and an event diagram. Please contact one of our Sales Managers with any questions.

Once you have considered these event basics and details to determine your event needs, we welcome you to follow these next steps.

  • Contact us by email, phone, or Request a Proposal.
  • Provide one of our Sales Managers with as much information as possible. We are also available for in-person or Zoom meetings to discuss the details.
  • Once we have gathered the event information, we will create a menu proposal for your review.
  • Upon review of the proposal, please let us know if you have any questions, updates, or changes. Approve the proposal once all menu details are agreed upon.
    • For campus clients, please provide us with the University recharge number you intend for payment at this time.
    • Off-Campus groups will be asked to sign a catering agreement and return the signed copy at your earliest convenience.
  • For events with less than 300 guests, a final guaranteed guest count and all changes must be submitted five (5) business days prior to your event. If there are changes after this deadline, please contact one of our Sales Managers as soon as possible to discuss.  For further details, please review our Catering Policies (pdf)
  • After the completion of your event, your invoice will be sent to the event payment contact you provided.
  • Payment can be made by check, or by using a university recharge account. Checks should be made payable to “UC Regents”, and mailed to: Campus Catering, 1501 Residential Services, Santa Barbara, CA 93106. Please include a copy of the invoice and the invoice number written on the check. If you have questions regarding the billing process, please call us at 805-893-2114.
  • We would love to receive your feedback! A link to our Customer Feedback Survey will be included with your invoice.

We strive to make event planning simple, and hope this information will help you. Please do not hesitate to contact us with additional questions, or to begin discussing your catering needs. We look forward to planning a successful event with you!
If we are unavailable to provide catering services, we may authorize you to contract with an approved off-campus caterer. For more information about filling out a Catering Permit, and to see the list of Approved Caterers, please visit UCSB EH&S.