The 32 Things That Annoy Your Server Most

No, I'm going to leave YOU a bad review online.
The 32 Things That Annoy Your Server Most

If you work in the service industry, you probably spend a large chunk of your time laughing and complaining with your coworkers about the weirdest and rudest customer habits. We are driven crazy on the daily, but talking about makes it manageable, and can even be fun.

If you do not work in the service industry but frequently eat out, think of this as a PSA. It is important for you to learn about the ways you're terrorizing your server.

Without further ado, here are the 32 most annoying things that customers are doing to drive their servers insane:

32. Walking right past the host.

And then being confused about why you aren’t magically at a table holding a menu.

31. Seating yourself.

And then picking the only damn table in the entire restaurant we haven't had a chance to clean yet. And then being outraged that it's not clean, but refusing to sit at any one of the 30 other clean tables.

30. Asking insane questions.

And then expecting us to respond politely instead of explode into laughter. Here's something I've actually heard before:

"What kind of meat are in your wings?"

"Um… chicken?"

"I don’t really like chicken, do you have beef?"

No, but you'll be the first person I call if I ever see a cow with wings.

29. Walking in 1 minute before the restaurant closes.

And then ordering a three course meal, spilling 5 drinks, mashing your potatoes into the crevasses of the booth, using 400 napkins, and not tipping. Your patronage is much appreciated.

28. Switching tables at will.

Not every table in this restaurant is in your server's sectionso you could be screwing them over. Also, transferring a cheque from one table to another usually requires hunting down a manager. However, if that table by the window won't stop calling your name, no problem, just let us know. That being said, sociopathic table hoppers are not welcome.

27. Splitting your bill in complicated ways.

"Can you split the calamari between us 5, the nachos 8 ways, the pitcher 3 ways, and then I’ll take his meal and he’s paying for my drinks, and then everyone else has what they ordered. Also Tom left so I guess I'll pay for his but I'm not tipping on it. Also, we're in a rush!"

26. Hitting on your server.

Balancing polite, professional, and casual communicationcan already be a handful. Unless your server welcomes and reciprocates your initial flirtation, don't force them to continually swerve advances whilst up-keeping everything else.

25. "Can you charge my phone?"

Can you pull it together?

24. Cutting off your server.

Don't cut off your server when they are just trying to tell you about the daily specials. It's their job to tell you, so just listen.

Gif cred - Giphy

23. Requesting something not on the menu.

"But they made it for me last time!"Well, last time you were here it was on the menu.

22. Requesting copious amounts of complimentary items.

"Can I have a plate of pickles, a bowl of maraschino cherries, and six baskets of bread, to go?" Why certainly! I would love to have a long argument with the kitchen on your behalf, absolute stranger.

21. Freaking out because YOUR card got declined.

I am always surprised that people get madat the server in these situations, when it should really be the other way around. Don't blame it on me, and don't blame it on the machine that you have 4$ in the bank, Robert. And don't make me call your mother again.

20. Asking if we serve breakfast at 7pm.

Gif cred - Giphy

19. Asking for the strongest, cheapest drink.

The strongest drink and the cheapest drink will never be the same drink. Let me break this down for you: the stronger a drink is, the more alcohol that is in it. The more alcohol in a drink means the more it costs to make, and therefore, you will be charged the more for it. End of story.

18. "What can I get for 5 dollars?"

I don't know, a serviette and a glass of water?

17. Not tipping your server because you’re pissed at how expensive the bill is. 

It’s not your server's fault you ordered this much food. All they did was carry all of it and cater to your every whim. Now is a good time to mention that a two dollar tip doesn't cover a 100$ bill.

Most, if not all restaurants require that servers tip out to other staff members based on their daily sales. So if the restaurant has a 5% tip-out policy, your server will have to give five dollars away because they sold you 100 dollars worth of product. In other words, if you give a server 2$ on a 100$ dollar bill, they will have to paythree dollars out of their own pocket just to have served you.

16. Talking on your phone for the first 20 minutes of being in the restaurant.

Servers are required to introduce themselves to you within a couple minutes of you being seated. Beyond that, you’ve been sitting in my section for awhile now and I’d really love to get this party started.

15. Stealing my pens.

We need those waaaaay more than you do buddy.

14. Asking me to recite the menu and then continuing your conversation instead of listening.

Or, after I've spent 20 minutes describing 14 menu items, you just say "I'll stick with chicken fingers and fries."

13. Trying to order from anyone other than your server.

Most of the time, only one person has access to your cheque. Also, the scared 14 year old host you're trying to order from doesn't have a pad of paper or a clue what's on the menu.

12. Demanding that we try your food.

I would love to taste your soup! Can I share your spoon and sit on your lap too?

11. Stopping us to have a meaningless conversation while we're holding a stack of plates.

Now is not the time to tell me about the 'hilarious' thing your baby did. But, "I'll come right back to hear all about it!" *hides in the kitchen for 8 years*

10. Snapping or whistling to get our attention.

We are not dogs or servants.

9. Interrupting your server while they're talking to another table.

Do you really think I'm going to stop taking an orderto oblige your random demand? Can you imagine if I was at your table taking your order, and then suddenly I just dropped my notepad and sprinted to another table to fill up their water?

8. Failing to combine your demands into a single request.

You order some extra salsa, and when the server comes back with the salsa you ask for extra sour cream. When they're back with the sour cream you want another drink. No, keep it up, we love running in circles for you.

Gif cred - Giphy

7. Telling us that you hated your meal AFTER you finish eating it.

Now you'll either not tip us or leave angry, or both. Please, if you have a problem, let your server know ASAP so that they can fix it and give you another chance at a positive experience. If you hate it and don't eat it, you won't have to pay for it. If you hate it and eat it, well, you ate it... so that'll be $19.99.

6. Waiting to tell us about your allergy/intolerance until the food is right in front of you.

"Wait.... this hamburger has meat in it. I'm a vegetarian!"

5. Being both indecisive AND picky.

I don't know the first thing about you, so don't make me responsible for your order.

"What do YOU think I should order?"

"How about our linguine?"

"No, I hate pasta"


"I hate steak"

"Well, what kind of things do you like?"

"Oh, I dunno! You just pick, and I'll be happy!"

I am willing to bet you won't.

Gif cred - Giphy

4. Camping out at a booth for 4 hours.

Obviously, you're out to have fun so take your time after you settle up. But if you've paid your bill before my shift starts and I still have to ask you to leave at close, you just eliminated an entire table from my section and cost me a lot in potential tips.

3. “Keep the change.”

A whole nickel, just for me?? Golly-gee!

2. "Can I pay $5 in cash, $10 on credit, $7 in Canadian Tire money, and the rest in pennies?"


1. Telling us you also work in the service industry and then doing any of the aforementioned. 

Thanks for letting me know that you know better..?

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