Sunday, July 25, 2010

Bar Etiquette

Loyal Readers,
I've decided to take a short intermission from talking about fraternal values and my experiences to bring you a short Public Service Announcement about a subject that is very near and dear to my heart.

For those of you who didn't know, I have spent a fair amount of time the past two years working in at bars. It amazes me how little people understand about bar etiquette. My philosophy has been that the US should have one year mandatory requirement to work in the service industry, like some other countries have mandatory military service.

Enough with that, onward to my Top 10 bar etiquette tips (in no particular order):

1. Do not ever snap your fingers at a member of the wait staff (coughZekecough).

2. Ask before moving tables and chairs - you may be taking a table away from a waiter's section. This also goes for pulling bar stools to a table.

3. Depending on the place - call and make a reservation if you plan on bringing more than 8 people. It makes life a lot easier for everyone.

4. If you leave your phone number on the receipt, you better tip more than 20% if you expect them to call you back.

5. Leave a note. It doesn't have to be anything special, but a simple "thank you" goes a long way. I've kept every note I've ever received. However, make sure it doesn't cross into the realm of creepy/ sexual harassment. I guarantee it will make the server's night.

6. When asking for silveware/ napkins/ another drink ext. if you include the phrase "...whenever you get a chance" more often then not I'll go get it for you right away.

7. If you learn a servers name, don't yell it across the bar. There are some exceptions to this rule depending on the bar and your relationship with the server. I knew if my regulars on the rugby team called my name and pointed to a pitcher, they needed another pitcher of Bud Heavy. They also tipped accordingly.

8. Beer doesn't taste the same out of the tap as it does out of the bottle. If you want to try a beer to make sure you like it, just ask. Saying that it "tastes funny" is not going to get you a free drink.

9. The less you ask for free drinks, the more likely you are to receive them.

10. If a member of the waitstaff or bartender take care of you, return the favor.

Friends in the service industry: feel free to comment and add your own.

High: Finally getting back to Oxford at 2:30am last night
Low: Blowing a tire 20 miles outside of Ann Arbor


  1. Thanks for the heads up, good thinkin my fratty friend.

  2. Hahah I like it (despite the fact that getting back to Oxford was apparently better than seeing your girlfriend for the first time in three weeks...ouch).

  3. I love this. It's all so true - especially #4 and #9.