Secrets Your Waiter Won't Tell You

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040207-3What You Need to Know About Tipping

If you say, “Don’t worry—I’m a really good tipper,” that always means you aren’t.
—Chris

 
The best tippers tend to be middle-class or people who have worked for everything they have, not the really wealthy or the kid who inherited the trust fund. Which is not to say that we mind if you use coupons. But when you do, tip on the amount the bill would have been before the discount.
—Judi Santana

First dates, especially blind Internet dates, are great for tips. You know he’ll probably order a bottle of wine and leave a 20 to 25 percent tip because he’s showing off.
—Jeremy Burton, waiter at a grill in southwest Michigan

How to Be a Good Customer

 
If the restaurant is busy and your child is shy, please order for him. Kids can sit there forever trying to decide, or they whisper and you can’t hear them. Meanwhile, the people at the next table are yelling at you to come over.
—Derek Dudley, a waiter at a casual pizza restaurant in Phoenix

What We Want You to Know

 
People think that just because your food took a long time, it’s the server’s fault. Nine times out of ten, it’s the kitchen. Or it’s the fact that you ordered a well-done burger.
—Judi Santana

 
Now that I’ve worked in a restaurant, I never ask for lemon in a drink. Everybody touches them. Nobody washes them. We just peel the stickers off, cut them up, and throw them in your iced tea.
—Charity Ohlund, Kansas City waitress

We put sugar in our kids’ meals so kids will like them more. Seriously. We even put extra sugar in the dough for the kids’ pizzas.
—Waitress at a well-known pizza chain

 
Even at the best breakfast buffet in the world, 99 times out of 100, the big pan of scrambled eggs is made from a powder.
—Jake Blanton

When you’re with the woman who’s not your wife, you’re a lot nicer to us, probably because you know that we know it’s not your wife.
—Caroline Radaj, waitress at a members-only club outside Milwaukee

How to Be a Good Customer

 
Avoid Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day like the black plague. It’s crazy busy, so they’re not going to be able to pay as much attention to quality. Plus, they bring out a special menu where everything is overpriced.
—Steve Dublanica

It’s much easier to be recognized as a regular on Mondays, Tuesdays, or Wednesdays. Once you’re recognized as a regular, good things start to happen. You’ll find your wineglass gets filled without being put on your bill, or the chef might bring you a sample.
—Christopher Fehlinger

What Else We’d Like You to Know
Don’t order fish on Sunday or Monday. The fish deliveries are usually twice a week, so Tuesday through Friday are great days. Or ask the restaurant when they get theirs.
—Steve Dublanica

In most restaurants, after 8 p.m. or so, all the coffee is decaf because no one wants to clean two different coffeepots. I’ll bring out a tray with 12 coffees on it and give some to the customers who ordered regular, others to the ones who ordered decaf. But they’re all decaf.
—Charity Ohlund

At a lot of restaurants, the special is whatever they need to sell before it goes bad. Especially watch out for the soup of the day. If it contains fish or if it’s some kind of “gumbo,” it’s probably the stuff they’re trying to get rid of.
—Kathy Kniss, who waited tables for ten years in Los Angeles

We want you to enjoy yourself while you’re there eating, but when it’s over, you should go. Do you stay in the movie theater after the credits? No.
—Waiter at a casual restaurant in the Chicago area

When you say, “I’ll have the pasta Alfredo,” it tells me two things: You aren’t interested in trying new things, and you don’t eat out much. Restaurants put this dish on their menus because it’s “safe,” it sells, and it’s cheap to make.
—JR

If you don’t like something, don’t muddle your way through it like a martyr and then complain afterward. If you don’t like it, don’t eat it. Send it back and get something else.
—Christopher Fehlinger

If you’re worried about cleanliness, check out the bathroom. If the bathroom is gross, you can be sure the kitchen is much worse.
—Waitress at a well-known pizza chain

SUREFIRE STEREOTYPES
In a weekly blog called “In the Weeds” for frothygirlz.com, Kansas City waitress Charity Ohlund describes her favorite customer stereotypes:

1. If you are a pack of females, you want separate checks. And I don’t mean split evenly by the number of people. I mean split down to the exact number of Diet Cokes with lime each person consumed. And if eight gals order a $14 appetizer to share, that needs to be split into $1.75 each. If you are a pack of females over age 55, I’m near tears. You want all of the above, plus you’re going to complain about every … single … thing.

2. If you look like you have an eating disorder, you do. Beautifully skinny model types move their food around the plate for two hours, or they devour the whole porterhouse and head to the ladies’ room immediately.

3. If you have a European accent, you are a horrible tipper. Accent = 10 percent. Always.

4. If you are a young couple out on a date, you are going to pretend to be torn about what to order when you know and I know it’s going to be the filet (medium well) and mashed potatoes. Split.

5. If you order a Zinfandel and I ask, “Red or white?” and you look at me with an annoyed face and say, “Pink,” I go tell the other servers and we laugh.

6. If you have a food allergy, you will talk about it in great detail and then each time I set a new plate in front of you, you will ask me if I remembered your food allergy.

7. If you are a woman who has climbed your way into the higher levels of corporate success and you are hosting a business dinner, you will not tip as well as a corporate man hosting the same style dinner. I don’t know why. Please enlighten me.

Source: Yahoo! Reader’s Digest Magazine

By: Michelle Crouch

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