What kinds of restaurants will I find?
You will find many kinds of restaurants offering a wide selection of foods
at a variety of prices with a variety of services. Basically, however,
restaurants can be divided into two types-fast food and full service.
Fast food restaurants such as McDonald's, Wendy's, Taco Bell, Kentucky
Fried Chicken, and so forth, serve hamburgers, tacos, chicken, sandwiches,
and other foods that usually cost less than $3 per item. They are called
fast-food restaurants because they serve your food within a few minutes.
At fast-food restaurants you order food at a counter and the server gives
it to you at the counter on a tray, or in a paper bag if you ordered the
food "to go." Some fast-food restaurants offer a "drive-through
window" which allows you to order and pick up your food without leaving
If you want to eat in the restaurant, you then seat yourself. You are also
expected to clean off your table when you are done with the meal. Since
the food is usually served in disposable wrapping or boxes, you simply
throw the wrappings in a waste basket and leave the tray on top of the
waste basket before you leave.
Full-service, or "sit-down," restaurants offer even a wider variety,
usually at higher prices. Unlike fast-food restaurants, they usually seat
you, have a waiter or waitress take your order and serve your food, and
clean your tables after you complete your meal. (Some restaurants have
a "host" or "hostess" who will seat you; others have
signs that say "seat yourself." In the United States, you normally
do not join a stranger at a table.)
Some restaurants have a specialized menu (steaks, seafood, Chinese, Mexican,
pizza, and so forth), while others offer a wide variety of items. Prices
can range anywhere from less than $5 per meal to more than $50 a meal,
depending on what restaurant you go to. So, if you are not familiar with
a restaurant, ask to see a menu. The menu will show you what foods the
restaurant serves and at what prices.
Will I be required to make reservations?
Most restaurants do not require you to make reservations. However, if you
are not sure whether reservations are required, call the restaurant and
Do I need to "tip"?
Generally, a tip (a cash gratuity left on the table for the server) is
expected at any restaurant where a waiter or waitress serves you. The acceptable
standard is 15 percent of the total bill. Some restaurants will automatically
add this 15 percent, called a "gratuity charge," to your bill
if you have a certain number of people (for example, seven or more) in
go on to Health Care
back to "How to Survive"
table of contents
© Copyright information