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Earnings vary widely, depending on the size and location of the catering operation and the skill and motivation of the individual entrepreneur. Many caterers charge according to the number of guests attending a function. Generally, the larger the event, the larger the profit. Earnings are also influenced by whether a caterer works full time or only part time. Even very successful caterers often work part time, working another job either because they enjoy it or to protect themselves against a possible downturn in the economy.

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