Author Topic: Restaurant etiquette  (Read 43104 times)

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dks64

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #60 on: September 14, 2011, 08:02:27 PM »
I'm 28, and rarely ever get IDed anymore.  I don't have any issue if I do get carded, but it definitely surprises me.  It doesn't take me long to get to my ID, because I just use a basic, very organized (the ONLY thing in my life that's very organized ;)) tri-fold wallet, but it wouldn't occur to me to intentionally keep my ID handy at a restaurant, because I don't need it 90% of the time.  I do think that if you're in an area where people card more vigilantly, or if you are (or look) young, it's a good idea to keep it handy.

I'm with you in theory on asking for condiments up front, but it doesn't work so well in practice.  I don't know if I need Tabasco for my chili until I taste it and realize it's bland, and sometimes I just don't know what comes with a dish - last weekend, DH and I both ordered shrimp dishes, but only mine came with cocktail sauce, so he had to ask for it once the food arrived.  I do tend to tip extra if we've sent the server running a lot.

I'm honestly not a fan of the "greet the table in 30 seconds" trend.  If it's just coming over and saying "Hi, I'm Joe, I'll be your server tonight," it's a waste of (the server's) time, and if it's "Hi, I'm Joe, I'll be your server tonight.  Can I get anyone a drink?" it's given me absolutely no time at all to figure out what I want to drink.  Give me a minute or two to actually check out the drink specialties or the wine list or whatever!

On a related note, I don't know that it's etiquette, really, but I wish restaurants would at least offer water now, when taking drink orders.  I can understand why it's not brought out automatically anymore (I'm sure it's a waste of time and water), but I don't like having to remember to ask every time, especially when I order something that's more fun drink than refreshing drink (like a glass of wine or a pina colada or something, instead of a Coke).  It seems like it would be more efficient to make it part of the "Can I get anyone a drink?" speech.

When people can grab their ID fast, it's not an issue at all. But you wouldn't believe how many people keep their IDs out of a wallet and tossed into a large, full purse. Or not organized in a wallet where they have to go through 20 cards to find it. Agree fully with your paragraph :)

Of course needing things after tasting the food is different, but I would say that about 99% of the time, they wait until the food hits the table, don't touch it, then ask. Planning ahead is helpful for everyone and insures you get your condiments while your food is still hot. People shouldn't have to ask for ketchup with fries, that's one thing that really isn't included, that should come automatically. The reason I brought it up is I've seen customers get very upset if they don't get it immediately after asking, despite how busy the server is. That way the server has 10-20 minutes to get the ranch rather than 20 seconds, it's courteous :)

I agree about greet times, but sometimes people freak out if they wait even 30 seconds. When I see people sit down, I give them about 10-15 seconds, then stop by to say hi and drop coasters, then tell them I'll be with them shortly. That way they're acknowledged and they have time to decide on a drink.

I usually ask if someone orders a beer or cocktail if they want water, not if they order soda or iced tea because I would say that 99% of the time, they don't touch it. I do think it's funny that so many people don't see water as a drink. "Hi there, can I get you started with something to drink?" "No thanks, I'll just take a water." What were you planning on doing with the water if not drink it?  :P My boyfriend does that occasionally and I tease him.  ;D Usually when people are thirsty, they just ask for a water.  You'd be surprised how many people request water and not even touch it too.

DuBois

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #61 on: September 15, 2011, 03:42:36 AM »


A couple of rules for servers:

1) Don't ask me how my meal is when I have a mouthful of food! It is very annoying indeed.

2) Don't upsell me. I know what I wanted to order, and you trying to make money for the restaurant doesn't go over well. I'm in the UK, so it isn't to increase tips that they do this, but it's still annoying.


a

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #62 on: September 15, 2011, 05:52:07 AM »
I know this thread is old, but Iím amazed that someone in the UK would tip 20% as standard. That would make for a very good salary for waitresses/waiters in restaurants I typically frequent.
Hourly wage: approx £6 (minimum).

For a normal weekday meal (which means weíd spend 1.5 hours tops in the restaurant) Iíd pay around £30 for 2 people. This includes a main each (say £7-9 each), one or possibly two starters (£3-5 each), two or possibly three drinks (£3-5 each).
If we paid a 20% tip itíd be £6. The person serving us would have at least 2 other tables (normally more but Iím being very conservative) to serve. If they eat as little/much as us and spends as much time, this waiter would take home £14 per hour with an extremely conservative estimate Ė probably more.

If I estimate 3 tables, one of which with 4 people instead of 2, and eating 25% more the hourly take home would be £23).
Maybe Iím not getting it but that is more than many graduates get, and they would pay tax on it.

I guess Iím just happy I live in a country where people donít have to depend on other peopleís goodwill to pay their bills/that I donít ever have to tip if I donít want to and nobody can say anything about it.

DuBois

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #63 on: September 15, 2011, 06:44:07 AM »
I know this thread is old, but Iím amazed that someone in the UK would tip 20% as standard. That would make for a very good salary for waitresses/waiters in restaurants I typically frequent.
Hourly wage: approx £6 (minimum).

For a normal weekday meal (which means weíd spend 1.5 hours tops in the restaurant) Iíd pay around £30 for 2 people. This includes a main each (say £7-9 each), one or possibly two starters (£3-5 each), two or possibly three drinks (£3-5 each).
If we paid a 20% tip itíd be £6. The person serving us would have at least 2 other tables (normally more but Iím being very conservative) to serve. If they eat as little/much as us and spends as much time, this waiter would take home £14 per hour with an extremely conservative estimate Ė probably more.

If I estimate 3 tables, one of which with 4 people instead of 2, and eating 25% more the hourly take home would be £23).
Maybe Iím not getting it but that is more than many graduates get, and they would pay tax on it.

I guess Iím just happy I live in a country where people donít have to depend on other peopleís goodwill to pay their bills/that I donít ever have to tip if I donít want to and nobody can say anything about it.

Preach it! I actually wouldn't want to eat out in the US, because what would happen if I was unhappy with service? Would I still have to tip? I wouldn't want to, but might have to because of societal pressure. I also agree about the point about graduates. I am currently working towards a degree. I get some grant aid, and some achievement based bursaries.  I also work as a cleaner, for a modest sum. I would not expect to make big money working at a job that does not require a degree. If I did, I wouldn't be working toward a degree!

Wonderflonium

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #64 on: September 15, 2011, 08:49:54 AM »
2) Don't upsell me. I know what I wanted to order, and you trying to make money for the restaurant doesn't go over well. I'm in the UK, so it isn't to increase tips that they do this, but it's still annoying.

Often, the server doesn't have a choice. It's part of the job, and if (s)he doesn't do it and a secret shopper is watching, (s)he will be in trouble.
The status is not quo!

DuBois

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #65 on: September 15, 2011, 09:01:09 AM »
2) Don't upsell me. I know what I wanted to order, and you trying to make money for the restaurant doesn't go over well. I'm in the UK, so it isn't to increase tips that they do this, but it's still annoying.

Often, the server doesn't have a choice. It's part of the job, and if (s)he doesn't do it and a secret shopper is watching, (s)he will be in trouble.

Yeah, it's a dilemma. But it is still very annoying if done agressively.

dks64

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #66 on: September 15, 2011, 12:47:27 PM »
2) Don't upsell me. I know what I wanted to order, and you trying to make money for the restaurant doesn't go over well. I'm in the UK, so it isn't to increase tips that they do this, but it's still annoying.

Often, the server doesn't have a choice. It's part of the job, and if (s)he doesn't do it and a secret shopper is watching, (s)he will be in trouble.

Exactly. And you'd actually be surprised at how many people take you up on the upsell offer. "Would you like to add a soup or a salad for $2.95 more?" "Yes! That sounds great."

567Kate

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #67 on: September 15, 2011, 12:53:36 PM »
On a related note, I don't know that it's etiquette, really, but I wish restaurants would at least offer water now, when taking drink orders.  I can understand why it's not brought out automatically anymore (I'm sure it's a waste of time and water), but I don't like having to remember to ask every time, especially when I order something that's more fun drink than refreshing drink (like a glass of wine or a pina colada or something, instead of a Coke).  It seems like it would be more efficient to make it part of the "Can I get anyone a drink?" speech.

In areas with a drought, this is often policy not to offer water, only to bring it when asked. I was recently in Vegas and the waiter couldn't even let one person order water for the table: he needed to hear everyone say that they wanted it.

dks64

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #68 on: September 15, 2011, 12:59:50 PM »
I get that a lot, people ordering water for everyone, and then 95% of it doesn't even get touched. It's a waste of water in the cup, dishwashing water, straws, and time to clear the table. I'm an environmentalist, so seeing it drives me crazy  :P Most people just don't drink water, which is weird to me because I LOVE water. It's my favorite drink  ;D

violinp

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #69 on: September 15, 2011, 01:22:50 PM »
I know this thread is old, but Iím amazed that someone in the UK would tip 20% as standard. That would make for a very good salary for waitresses/waiters in restaurants I typically frequent.
Hourly wage: approx £6 (minimum).

For a normal weekday meal (which means weíd spend 1.5 hours tops in the restaurant) Iíd pay around £30 for 2 people. This includes a main each (say £7-9 each), one or possibly two starters (£3-5 each), two or possibly three drinks (£3-5 each).
If we paid a 20% tip itíd be £6. The person serving us would have at least 2 other tables (normally more but Iím being very conservative) to serve. If they eat as little/much as us and spends as much time, this waiter would take home £14 per hour with an extremely conservative estimate Ė probably more.

If I estimate 3 tables, one of which with 4 people instead of 2, and eating 25% more the hourly take home would be £23).
Maybe Iím not getting it but that is more than many graduates get, and they would pay tax on it.

I guess Iím just happy I live in a country where people donít have to depend on other peopleís goodwill to pay their bills/that I donít ever have to tip if I donít want to and nobody can say anything about it.

Preach it! I actually wouldn't want to eat out in the US, because what would happen if I was unhappy with service? Would I still have to tip? I wouldn't want to, but might have to because of societal pressure. I also agree about the point about graduates. I am currently working towards a degree. I get some grant aid, and some achievement based bursaries.  I also work as a cleaner, for a modest sum. I would not expect to make big money working at a job that does not require a degree. If I did, I wouldn't be working toward a degree!

Gahr, usually, if the service is atrocious, I'd tip 10 percent. 15 is normal, and 20 is for excellent. Now, I can think of times I wouldn't tip, but those instances would be so egregious that I'd be calling a manager and a lawyer at the same time.
"It takes a great deal of courage to stand up to your enemies, but even more to stand up to your friends" - Harry Potter


RainhaDoTexugo

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #70 on: September 15, 2011, 02:40:35 PM »
On a related note, I don't know that it's etiquette, really, but I wish restaurants would at least offer water now, when taking drink orders.  I can understand why it's not brought out automatically anymore (I'm sure it's a waste of time and water), but I don't like having to remember to ask every time, especially when I order something that's more fun drink than refreshing drink (like a glass of wine or a pina colada or something, instead of a Coke).  It seems like it would be more efficient to make it part of the "Can I get anyone a drink?" speech.

In areas with a drought, this is often policy not to offer water, only to bring it when asked. I was recently in Vegas and the waiter couldn't even let one person order water for the table: he needed to hear everyone say that they wanted it.

That makes perfect sense somewhere like Vegas.  I live in Chicago, though!  We have a whole giant lake at our disposal.  I don't mind that it isn't brought automatically, but I do wish it was offered, because I grew up with it being brought automatically, and it's hard to get my mind to readjust to having to ask for it :P

DuBois

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #71 on: September 15, 2011, 02:52:52 PM »
I know this thread is old, but Iím amazed that someone in the UK would tip 20% as standard. That would make for a very good salary for waitresses/waiters in restaurants I typically frequent.
Hourly wage: approx £6 (minimum).

For a normal weekday meal (which means weíd spend 1.5 hours tops in the restaurant) Iíd pay around £30 for 2 people. This includes a main each (say £7-9 each), one or possibly two starters (£3-5 each), two or possibly three drinks (£3-5 each).
If we paid a 20% tip itíd be £6. The person serving us would have at least 2 other tables (normally more but Iím being very conservative) to serve. If they eat as little/much as us and spends as much time, this waiter would take home £14 per hour with an extremely conservative estimate Ė probably more.

If I estimate 3 tables, one of which with 4 people instead of 2, and eating 25% more the hourly take home would be £23).
Maybe Iím not getting it but that is more than many graduates get, and they would pay tax on it.

I guess Iím just happy I live in a country where people donít have to depend on other peopleís goodwill to pay their bills/that I donít ever have to tip if I donít want to and nobody can say anything about it.

Preach it! I actually wouldn't want to eat out in the US, because what would happen if I was unhappy with service? Would I still have to tip? I wouldn't want to, but might have to because of societal pressure. I also agree about the point about graduates. I am currently working towards a degree. I get some grant aid, and some achievement based bursaries.  I also work as a cleaner, for a modest sum. I would not expect to make big money working at a job that does not require a degree. If I did, I wouldn't be working toward a degree!

Gahr, usually, if the service is atrocious, I'd tip 10 percent. 15 is normal, and 20 is for excellent. Now, I can think of times I wouldn't tip, but those instances would be so egregious that I'd be calling a manager and a lawyer at the same time.

Yeah, I guess that that's where the cognitive dissonance comes in for me. I couldn't tip 10% for atrocious service, as in rude, inattentive, lazy, something like that. Even if that was epected, it would just seem like rewarding a bad job.

WhiteTigerCub

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #72 on: September 15, 2011, 02:58:13 PM »
Yeah, I guess that that's where the cognitive dissonance comes in for me. I couldn't tip 10% for atrocious service, as in rude, inattentive, lazy, something like that. Even if that was epected, it would just seem like rewarding a bad job.

Actually it's not though because the server pays income taxes at 15% of their tips total at the end of the year.

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DuBois

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #73 on: September 15, 2011, 03:05:23 PM »
Yeah, I guess that that's where the cognitive dissonance comes in for me. I couldn't tip 10% for atrocious service, as in rude, inattentive, lazy, something like that. Even if that was epected, it would just seem like rewarding a bad job.

Actually it's not though because the server pays income taxes at 15% of their tips total at the end of the year.


I had thought that servers were taxed on 8% tips. But either way, if service is really, really bad, then presumably the server is in the wrong job. I'm not talking about just being a bit slow, I mean rude or totally forgetting food, that kind of thing.

Dindrane

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Re: Restaurant etiquette
« Reply #74 on: September 16, 2011, 12:07:31 AM »
In my opinion, it is appropriate to speak with a manager if you (in general) don't wish to leave a tip.  It gives the restaurant an opportunity to address your complaint, and if nothing else, makes it clear to them that your not leaving a tip is intentional and not an oversight.

If the service is not great, but it's not bad enough to speak to a manager, I personally just calculate 15% down to the last penny and forget about it.  My time is worth more than the money at that point, since I'm not willing to do anything to "fix" it.