I spent several years in my late teens and early twenties as a waitress, so I know first-hand the difference between a table full of good customers and a table that’s just going to piss a waiter off. Sometimes even the table with the best, most polite customers can be the worst, though, so I think perhaps people piss off their waiters without meaning to. To help you avoid that, here’s a list of 8 things that piss off your waiter — so you can try avoid doing them!
1. Asking for Nutrition Information
I can barely remember my own birthday, let alone how many calories or grams of fat are in a particular drink, not to mention an entire menu. Waiters and waitresses don’t know either, so don’t ask them. If you want to know how badly you’re breaking your diet with that Bloomin’ Onion at Outback, check the website yourself before you order.
2. Request Hot Tea
Though most waiters don’t mind making a cup of hot tea when they’re not busy, it makes them crazy to have to do it during rush hours. Why? Because it’s one of the only drinks they can’t prepare ahead of time. They have to heat the water, gather all of the stuff, and bring it out. And that, my dear, takes a lot of time. If it’s the busy dinner or lunch rush, order coffee or something else instead.
3. Make Them Run Unrealistically
It’s okay to ask your waiter for more napkins, or extra tartar sauce, or another glass of water… if you do them all at once. But don’t make requests every three seconds, and make your poor waiter run like a mad man. This will REALLY piss your waiter off.
4. Blame Them for the Hostess’s or Chef’s Mistakes
If you asked for non-smoking, and got sat in the smoking section, or if your rare steak shows up done medium, it’s not your waiter’s fault, so don’t blame him. Ask him nicely to correct the problem, and he will, gladly. But don’t take it out on him, or his tip, if the hostess or chef makes an error.
5. Being Just Plain Rude
As a general rule, it’s awful to be rude to anyone, but why would you ever want to be rude to your waiter, who holds, in his hands, the very food you’re about to eat? Be polite. Be gracious. Be as nice as you can, because one day, you might be a waiter, too… and also because if you piss off your waiter, he may just spit in your food… or worse. Or he may just make sure you get the old coffee instead of the fresh.
6. Let Your Children Run Wild, or Try to Order on Their Own
Please, for the safety of the other diners and the staff, and their own safety, don’t let your kids run wild in the restaurant! Also, don’t let shy, quiet Janie order her own meal. She’ll whisper, the waiter won’t hear her, and you’ll end up ordering for her anyway. Both of these things, but especially the former, will really piss off your waiter, and possibly everyone else in the restaurant!
7. Ask to Split the Bill after It’s Been Delivered
If you and the six friends you brought to the restaurant with you want to split the bill, ask the waiter BEFORE you order, or at least before he brings the bill! It makes a lot of extra work if he has to go back and re-calculate everything over again.
8. Tip Less Because of a Coupon
Just because you used a coupon that gave you half off your meal doesn’t mean the waiter worked half as hard to serve you, so tip on the amount you would have paid, not the discounted amount. Don’t piss off your waiter by stiffing him if your meal is comped, either.
In all of the years I was a waitress, I can’t tell you how many times people did these exact things — and how many times, even as patient as I am, how they made me mad! Now that this list is out there, though, hopefully we all know how to keep from pissing our waiters off… right? Right! And hey, if there are any current or past waiters out there, please share your stories! What did customers used to do to piss you off?
Top Photo Credit: toxel.ro