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How Much Do You Pay For Take Out Menus?

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7 replies to this topic

#1 Damon01

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Posted 17 November 2012 - 08:59 PM

I've been trying to find a decent source to get my takeout menus and other flyers from, but my local printers in town are way too expensive. I can find better deals online but then you factor in shipping and its not that much different.

I was just curious how much you pay for standard take out menus and where do you get them? Thanks.

- Damon

#2 HungryC

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 06:21 AM

Why would you pay any more than the cost of a photocopy? The going rate at copy shops for black and white is 10 cents per page for less than a thousand, 5 cents for more than 1k, with big price breaks as the volume increases. Color is wasted on takeout menus, IMHO. If you have something that requires offset printing, spend a few bucks on a decent graphic designer who can create a copy friendly version.

#3 KennethT

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 07:15 AM

I don't agree. In NYC where practically every restaurant delivers, we have a collection of menus that is quite impressive. Not one of them is a black/white photocopy. If it were, I personally would think it unprofessional. It doesn't have to be fancy - 4 color process, glossy paper, etc, but I think a matte 2 color Pantone spot would help set your menu apart from the myriad of others.

Back to your question, where to source, and how much to pay, I don't have a real answer. Years ago, before the Internet, my company used glossy 2 color spot pages as sell sheets. We found a printing company in Canada that had really good rates, even with shipping. I can try to look up the name tomorrow when I'm back at work. For now, I'd google spot color printer or something, and just get a bunch of quotes - you'll see pretty quickly what the going rate is, and who the outliers are.

#4 HungryC

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 07:36 AM

Goes to show how much regional variation exists....I have dozens and dozens, and not a single decent one is in color. The full color ones are all from awful, student-ghetto Chinese joints.

#5 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 07:46 AM

I also collect these things, and I have yet to get one here in Ecuador that is less than 4-colour on glossy. Then again, I can get A5 glossy two-sides in 4-colour for about 0.15 US each on offset runs of 1000. For my seasonal menus and holiday specials, I always do this - it's more than worth it.
Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.
My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

#6 Maison Rustique

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Posted 18 November 2012 - 08:33 AM

I'm not in the restaurant business, but I do own a very small business and come from an advertising and marketing background. If it was me, I'd go back to local printers with one of two proposals (as suits your business). Barter--do some catering in exchange for the printing, or discounted printing in exchange for a small discreet credit for the printing on the back or bottom of the menu.
Liberty, MO

#7 liuzhou

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 01:28 AM

Out here in China, restaurants are ridiculously paranoid about publicising their menus outside of the actual establishment. They are terrified that someone will steal their ideas, although most restaurant menus are 99% the same.

Leaflets (and we get lots of them) are also colour. Maybe not four-colour, but certainly spot colour.

As Frank Zappa nearly said "B&W don't make it."

I don' t know why, but I have hundreds of the damned leaflets. I know I will never go to those restaurants. In fact, some have long gone. But I still gather them almost every day.

Still some people collect stamps. Used stamps. Is there anything more useless?

#8 Holly Moore

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 11:02 AM

I used to own a copy center.

If doing a limited run, up to 500 or a thousand, don't spend the money on color printing or offset printing. Pay a good designer for a professional layout. Pay a little extra for decent paper stock - 24 lb bright white perhaps. Black and white copies nowadays are digital. Excellent reproduction. To save money, if your menu is limited, consider going two up (two menus per copy). Or use legal size or 11x17 and go three or four up.

Unless I was doing huge runs, I'd only use offset printing if I wanted to run two or three colors. Again, what comes out of the press is only as good as the design that goes into it. Have it professionally done.

Full color copies are less expensive than they used to be, but still relatively costly. Unless color photos are essential, I'd go either black and white or two or three color printing.
Holly Moore
"I eat, therefore I am."