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You, responsible human, know the general drill: Walk into a restaurant, wait patiently to be seated, tip 18 to 20 percent. But did you realize that leaving your phone on the table stresses waiters out to no end? (News flash: They actually do care about spills.)

We chatted with longtime servers to find the 13 lesser-known ways to keep our restaurant etiquette in check. Here's how to know when you're being too much.

1. You’re a seat swapper.
The hostess sat you in a specific spot for a reason. So no, you and your laptop can’t share that corner booth meant for six–at 6 p.m.

2. You sprawl out your things.
Gym bags go under the table. People are walking here.

3. You stroll in ten minutes before the restaurant closes.
It doesn’t matter how nice you are or how much you tip. Everyone wants to go home. (We hear Taco Bell is open.)

4. You’re on a call–or glued to Instagram.
Why isn’t she asking you if you need anything? Because you look entitled.


5. You leave your phone on the table when the food comes.
News flash: The server is actually a massive stress ball, trying not to spill sangria on your precious Siri.

6. You ask to substitute everything.
Allergies? Fine. Reworking a chef’s entire creation just because you prefer orzo over couscous? You own a kitchen…maybe try there.

7. You camp out.
Aka carrying on with your buddies over your 17th glass of post-meal water while there’s a line out the door.

8. You send food back because you, oops, didn’t really read the menu.
Stop gossiping about Carol’s insufferable neighbor for two minutes and decide if you really want the butternut squash.


9. You take off your shoes.
A more common offense than you’d think…

10. You let your kids run amok.
They are not Justin Bieber. This is not a Vegas penthouse. And babysitting is above your server’s pay grade.

11. You use a Groupon and then tip only on the discounted bill.
Always calculate for the total. The people refilling your Riesling have nothing to do with marketing ploys.


12. You leave coins as part of the tip.
You might not want them in your purse. But think of Giuseppe having to count 47 tables’ worth of dimes after a long night on his feet.

13. Your group splits a $25 check on four credit cards.
Really? You can’t give Paula $6 at book club next Monday?