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Catering and Event Space Rental

Catering: Catering occurs when a vendor prepares, sets up, serves, or cleans up food on Cornell-controlled property, including facilities owned by Cornell and facilities that may be rented or leased and only under Cornell’s control for the period of the event, e.g., rented banquet facility. Catering should not be confused with simple food delivery where no service is provided on-site, e.g., pizza delivery.

Event Space Rental: In nearly all cases, vendors supplying event space or event space with catering will present the unit with its own contract. If a vendor provides you with a contract specific to your event, please complete the Addendum for Facility Contract Agreements (PDF, 68 KB).

Contracts: If the vendor requests that their own contract be used instead of Cornell’s standard caterer contract, please:

  1. Review the hotel or facility contract. Once satisfied with that contract, initial, NetID and date each page in the margin.
  2. Have the venue complete and sign the Addendum for Facility Contract Agreements (PDF, 68 KB).
  3. Ensure that the Cornell department information (department name, contact name and NetID) are correct.
  4. Submit the contract and addendum to the BSC for processing as soon as possible. Do not sign the contract. Only Procurement Services is authorized to sign contracts on behalf of the university.

Caterer and Restaurant Selection

For a listing of vendors who have signed a university pricing agreement and are not required to complete the standard caterer contract, see the Caterers and Restaurants with a Pricing Agreement section of the Caterer and Restaurant List.

For a listing of Cornell-affiliated caterers who do not have to complete the standard caterer contract, see the Cornell-Affiliated Caterers and Restaurants section of the Caterer and Restaurant List.

Deposits: The university does not recommend that you pay 100% of the order total in advance; deposits should be limited to 50% of the total. For more information on deposits and paying for catering services, see Buying Manual section 307, Special Considerations for BSC Cardholders.

Insurance: Risk Management and Insurance requires that the vendor’s insurance certificates be on file. When renting a facility and hiring a bartender, liquor liablity insurance is also required from the company providing the bartender. BSCs should request insurance certificates, and, when possible, attach the certificates to the procurement card document (PCDO) in KFS. Payment does not have to be delayed pending receipt of insurance certificates. For Risk Management's insurance requirements, see Buying Manual section 405, Insurance Requirements.

Hiring and Paying for Catering and Event Space Rental

The following two tables identify contract requirements and deposit and final payment options for catering only, event space rental, and catering with event space rental. Please contact Procurement and Payment Services at procurement@cornell.edu or (607) 254-5300 with questions. A list of caterers with contracts is available on the Caterer and Restaurant List page.

Catering Only

Caterer Type Dollar Amount Contract Requirements Deposit Options Final Payment Options
Caterers with a university contract Up to $10,000 The standard catering contract is not needed.

Quote/scope of work is required.
A deposit up to 50% of the total, not to exceed $5,000, may be paid by procurement card (pcard). The BSC may make final payment on a pcard. The total payment (sum of deposit and final payment) must not exceed $10,000.
Caterers with a university contract $10,000 or greater The standard catering contact is not needed.

A purchase order is required. A quote/scope of work must be attached to the requisition.
After the purchase order is issued, a deposit up to 50% of the total, not to exceed $10,000, may be paid by pcard. Final payment to be made through the purchase order process.
All other caterers Up to $10,000 Use Cornell's standard caterer contract.

The BSC director or designee signs the completed contract and returns it to the vendor.
After contract is signed, a deposit up to 50% of the total, not to exceed $5,000, may be paid by pcard. The BSC may make final payment on a pcard. The total payment (sum of deposit and final payment) must not exceed $10,000.
All other caterers $10,000 or greater The unit will ask the vendor to complete Cornell's standard caterer contract.

The BSC collects the standard caterer contract and attaches it to the KFS requisition. The BSC does not sign the contract.
After the purchase order is issued, a deposit up to 50% of the total, not to exceed $10,000, may be paid by pcard. Final payment to be made through the purchase order process.


Event Space Rental

Rental Type Dollar Amount Contract Requirements Deposit Options Final Payment Options
Event space rental OR catering with event space rental Up to $10,000 In addition to the contract the vendor supplied, the unit will ask the vendor to complete Cornell's Addendum for Facility Contract Agreements, and the BSC director or designee signs the addendum. After the vendor contract and addendum are signed, a deposit up to 50% of the total, not to exceed $5,000, may be paid by pcard. The BSC may make final payment on a pcard. The total payment (sum of deposit and final payment) must not exceed $10,000.
Event space rental OR catering with event space rental $10,000 or greater In addition to the contract the vendor supplied, the unit will ask the vendor to complete Cornell's Addendum for Facility Contract Agreements. The BSC collects the addendum and vendor contract and attaches them to a requisition. The BSC does not sign the contract. After the purchase order is issued, a deposit up to 50% of the total, not to exceed $10,000, may be paid by pcard. Final payment to be made through the purchase order process. 


New York City Cornell Club (only)

If the event (e.g., lodging, space rental, catering) is at the New York City Cornell Club, then no purchase order is needed. This does not apply to individual business travel; see the university travel policy. All contracts must be signed by the Cornell Club member. Payment made be made via business service center procurement card up to $10,000. All other clubs follow the procedures in the tables above.

Catering and Event Space Rental Requirements

Refer to Buying Manual section 700, Paying for Services - Catering and Event Space Rental to review contract, purchase order, deposit, and payment methods.

Additional Buying Manual Resources