Just wondering, for those who charge for their cake tastings, when do you collect the money? Up front to ensure they show up, or at the tasting? If it is up front, is it non-refundable or if they cancel in a reasonable time before the tasting, do you return their money?
AWe had the same dilemma lat week. One caker told me that she charges $50 for consultation, provides a tasting box of 6 cupcakes with 3 different flavour combinations. $50 would have been refunded from the total price of the cake once it's ordered.
AWe do to-go tasting packages only ($30 for 2 cake flavors and 2 frostings, non-refundable) and ask for payment on pickup. If there is a no-show we can easily freeze the components of the tasting and use it for a different customer.
We charge $25 and let them choose 3 cake combos. The deposit is applied to the final payment on their cake order. I tell them they can have 4 people (bride, groom, and 2 guests) to minimize too much input. I have found this really helps the couple decide. I take the payment at the time of the booking to ensure they show.
I also provide a cupcake sampler (I do one a month for $36) and if they book I credit half the cost back to their wedding cake.
If I was having an appointment, I'd charge in advance, and if they bail, offer a credit toward another tasting.