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13 Little Etiquette Rules to Follow When You’re Dining at a Restaurant

Dining etiquette is more than just table manners.

Be mindful of the proper attire

Two interracial young people looking aside at somebody and smiling while siting at the table set for dinner in restaurantUfaBizPhoto/Shutterstock

Make sure you’re dressed accordingly. If you’re going to a fancier restaurant, skip jeans and tennis shoes and wear something a little nicer. If you’re not sure what the proper attire is, ask the restaurant in advance.

Wait to be seated

please wait to be seated signvectorarts/iStock

This is policy at many restaurants, but even if a restaurant offers to seat you before everyone arrives, it’s polite to wait for your entire party to arrive before being seated. Find out the 10 things restaurant hosts wish you would stop doing––not waiting to be seated is one of them!

Don’t leave your phone on the table

phone on dinner tableolaser/iStock

This one seems obvious, but take your phone, keys, and other belongings off of the table. And don’t take your phone out to text. This sends a message to your company that whoever you’re texting is more important to you than they are. Sending a reply message or email can wait until dinner is over, but if it’s urgent, excuse yourself before taking out your phone.

Put your napkin on your lap

Glasses, flowers, forks, knives served for dinner in restaurant with cozy interior.johan.lebedevski/Shutterstock

You can do this as soon as you sit down. However if someone is taking you out to a meal (especially if it is for business), wait until your host puts his or her napkin on their lap. If you excuse yourself to use the restroom, place the napkin on the chair. When you finish your meal, you can place the napkin on the table. This is one of the 10 table etiquette mistakes you need to stop making…are you guilty of the others?

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