Working at a restaurant seems like an easy job because TV series and movies have made us believe so.
But wait until you get sore feet, yelled at by a customer, or spill food/drinks on yourself.
While all these can make you hate your job, this job can give you an unforgettable experience.
So, Is It Weird to Eat at The Restaurant You Work at?
No. It isn’t weird at all. Many employees are guests at the restaurant they work at. So if the price of food suits your budget and the food is great, go ahead and eat.
This is a great chance to enjoy the food and ambiance from a ‘guest’s’ perspective, and to other employees, you will be like any other customer, only that you won’t be demanding or difficult to please.
You will also be given good service like other customers and may be expected to tip. The other employees expect you to understand and support each other. But if you get lower service from your server, you can also reduce the tip.
What Are the Pros of Eating at a Restaurant You Work at?
1. You Get To Enjoy the Food
The best thing about eating where you work is enjoying the food you offer your customers.
It’s normal to want to crave a bite of the food you are taking to your customer.
And you get to do it every day as it is your daily job. However, when you come in as a customer, you don’t have to desire to taste as your dream will be fulfilled.
2. You’re Already Familiar With The Menu
Also, since you work in that restaurant, you know everything on the menu.
Therefore, ordering a dish will not be as hard as you are used to hearing the chef describe different items on the menu daily. And you might even have tried some.
Your loved ones will be happy with your recommendations as you won’t lie to them about a particular food.
3. You Already Know The Prices
Additionally, you also won’t find it hard to plan the budget.
Remember that you sell food on the menu daily. So you know the price they go for.
Even if you are taking your family for a treat, you can easily estimate how much you will spend.
4. Great Service
Lastly, you will get great service since you are one of their own.
Your colleagues will love to serve you and give you the best service they can. You might even get special treats.
Since you are already friends with most of your co-workers, they will sneak some extra bread and drinks.
What Are The Drawbacks of Eating Where You Work?
While eating at the restaurant you work at has some benefits, it’s not always fun.
There are some downsides.
1. Lack Of Atmosphere
Like, you won’t get the relaxing experience that you crave.
Remember that you already spend a lot of time in the place anyway. So, there is nothing to excite you that can push you to go back during your off day.
2. Can’t Get Away
Spending so much time in a place can be draining, especially when it’s not by choice.
We usually don’t know how to draw the line between work and life. So once you walk through the restaurant doors, your mind shifts to work mode.
As such, focusing on enjoying your food and ambiance in that place can be challenging.
Additionally, it can feel weird to be served by your colleague. Although you are visiting as a customer, the problem is that you already know most of the workers there.
So, while you will pay for the service, you may still feel weird when your co-worker comes to serve you.
What About Eating While You Are Working?
Eating in the restaurant you work at while on shift is still not weird.
Some employees go elsewhere when on break.
However, it’s not the wisest thing to do to your place of employment.
You probably won’t want to eat in a place whose employees won’t.
Additionally, most restaurants give their workers free or discounted meals when working.
Four Restaurant Employee Eating Tips
If you choose to dine alone or with your friends where you work, you need to bear certain things in mind.
1. Reservation Booking
One is that you have to book a reservation early. This goes without saying, especially if the restaurant is usually busy.
There’s nothing as stressful as looking for a table at the last minute.
Usually, individuals are advised to go through the menu beforehand when visiting an eatery place. However, you don’t have to since you already know what the restaurant offers.
But, it is still a good idea to go through it with your friends, family, or whoever you plan on tagging alone.
2. Be Respectful
Once you arrive, you need to remain respectful and formal. Sure, the servers are your co-workers, and you are probably used to them.
But you are coming in as a customer and not one of them. A few jokes here and there are allowed. However, remember to remain formal and respectful.
3. Remember To Tip
After eating, you should tip the server. The fact that you are one of them means that you should be more understanding and supportive.
Therefore, like other customers, it is prudent to leave a tip for the servers to enjoy.
4. Don’t Overdo It
Lastly, if the place offers drinks, do not overindulge. Remember that it is still your place of work, even if you’re visiting as a customer.
You don’t want to come back to work and get a funny look from the employees or be called at the manager’s office the first thing you arrive.
For this reason, do not overindulge in alcoholic drinks that mess with your reasoning.
Two Etiquette Rules for Dining at a Restaurant
1. Dress Appropriate
Please skip jeans and tennis shoes if the restaurant is fancy. Instead, opt for something nicer. Since you already know the restaurant, you know the appropriate clothes to wear.
2. Don’t Eat If Everyone Is Not Served
If you have ordered different meals, they won’t take the same time to be prepared.
Therefore, if your orders arrive before other people’s, ensure you wait for others to receive theirs. If the food is appropriately uncooked, you should send it back.
Now we understand that this may feel weird as it may seem like you are putting yourself above your colleague.
However, it shouldn’t.
Eating at the restaurant you work in will feel different than when you dine at a random place.
You already know the staff and the workers, which can make your dining experience enjoyable as you won’t feel like a total stranger.
But, it can be weird mingling with these people from a customer level. Additionally, you may not have as much fun as you associate the place with work mode.