If Any Of These Things Are Seen At A Restaurant… Get Up And Leave

By molly atherton 7 months ago

Seeing a microwave is never a good sign

Image Source/ Reddit
A microwave might be the most convenient thing you have in your kitchen at home but when it comes to a restaurant it's never a good look. Seeing one meas that the restaurant will be warming up your dish, not making it fresh. This might sound like you are getting a fast meal but do you really want to pay a good few dollars just for a microwave meal you could make at home? Original content sourced from Femanin.com

If the waiter has dirty nails, grab your bag!

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When a waiter brings out the food you're about to eat or your drinks, it's so important they look presentable. Dirty nails are definitely a red flag to get yourself outta the restaurant. Many places have a strict policy on hygiene but if the place you go doesn't, it's a sign they are not that interested! The dirty nails could be handling your food and passing so much bacteria onto it ready for you to eat.

Plastic wrap is all over the kitchen!

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There's a few reasons why spotting plastic wrap when you go into a restaurant isn't a great sign. Firstly, although a lot of restaurants use it, the environmental impact is pretty high. There's no way at all for it to be recycled meaning tonnes of the stuff is used and unable to decompose. Another issue is that the food you are buying has been made previously and you could be eating old food;  definitely not something you go out for.

Food is sat idle on the counter!

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Food doesn't have long until it must be put away and stored properly. If you're waiting for your meal and the whole time you've seen seen a food order waiting to be put in the refrigerator or oven you should probably think twice about eating there. The room temperature can give the food the chance to grow bacteria which can be very harmful to you down the line!

When they use dishcloths around the restaurant!

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Of course, the thought of a dishcloth in your home might not be something you're too worried about. However, the amount of dirty dishes cleaned with a dishcloth in a restaurant can be a haven for bacteria. If a restaurant uses reusable dishcloths then they're simply asking for bacterial viruses to spread around the kitchen. Dishwashers and paper towels are much better!

If tin foil can be seen, turn around

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We mentioned earlier about cling wrap, well pretty much the same goes for tin foil. By using tin foil, a restaurant can prepare food a long time before and simply get it out when it's ordered. If you're looking for something super fresh and you catch sight of some foil you might want to try somewhere else. It might just get you a better and fresher meal.

If the tap water isn't clear then it's best not to eat here

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It's a good rule of thumb to get into the habit of making sure you're asking for some tap water when you sit down at a restaurant. Not only is it a way to get a cheap drink but it also allows you to be able to see the color of the tap water. It's so important to know this so you can make sure that the water is clean and free of bacteria. It's the same water being used to clean fresh produce and wash the dishes.

A sharing bowl of snacks at the bar

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Although those beer nuts sitting at the bar look like a good snack option after your meal they really aren't the best option to go for. The bacteria that comes from shared snack, jars or bowls are the reason why. Lots of strangers' poke their hands in for some snacks which really doesn't create the most hygienic option in a bar or restaurant. So avoid, avoid, avoid at all costs!

If you can't see the kitchen from the restaurant!

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If you can't see the kitchen then you should take it as a sign to turn around. If customers can't see inside then the kitchen staff might not care about the way that the food is being prepared, and they might not follow the correct procedures! Nobody can see what is going on to be able to complain that the food they are eating hasn't been made in the hygienic environment they were expecting.

Walking in you see that the bins are full

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You might think that seeing a full bin isn't anything to run away from but it really can be a hidden sign that the restaurant you have chosen isn't a good one. A full bin suggests a lot about the food waste; either it could come from unhappy customers or the restaurant just aren't selling enough food. Either way these signs aren't a good and could suggest that the food you're about to eat isn't as fresh as you thought.

The staff look uninterested when serving you

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The waiter not looking too happy about serving you at Ihop? This isn't just a bad look in general, it can also mean that all the staff in the place are really not that interested in they're job. Uninterested staff can be a minefield for mistakes which could leave you pretty ill. The chances are if the chef isn't too happy then the procedures might not be followed the way they should be to keep the environment safe.

There's reusable napkins on the table

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They might look like a nice set-up on the table but this nice-looking table decoration could be the reason many people get sick. When reusable napkins are used they require being cleaned after every use on a very high temperature wash. This is so all of the bacteria is killed ready for the next customer to use. Although, not even a powerful wash can get rid of all of the bacteria that can stick around.

You are served dry or fresh fruit in your drinks

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A piece of fruit in a drink can be refreshing and also look pretty cool. But did you know that this piece of fruit is probably riddled with bad bacteria from sitting in a communal bowl for some time. So if the waiter comes to you with a delicious drink you might just be safer to get up and leave your seat than having a sip of it. It might not be the sort of establishment you want to be eating at!

The lack of staff causes mayhem

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Low staff numbers when you walk into a restaurant are screaming out for a bad dining experience. If there isn't enough staff on the front then they probably won't have many in the back preparing the food either. This means that as well as a long wait for your food it's probably not going to be cooked safely or even tastily! Also, you just know the management don't pay their staff fairly.

There's a huge queue for a table

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Following on from the last point, if there's not much staff in the restaurant you'll probably end up waiting a long time to get seated. If you get to a restaurant and the line for a booth is long then you should probably keep walking to the next lot. Not only could it be really busy but it also means that they can't keep up with the amount of people already in the restaurant!

The bar area looks like complete chaos

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Usually, bars are open and can be seen by customers. This means that it's pretty important that the area looks the best it possibly can so customers see a clean environment. If the bar doesn't look great then the chances are the areas like the kitchen aren't doing great either. Maybe just take it as a hint to go elsewhere - it's never worth the risk!

If they can’t tell you where the food is from just don’t eat it

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Knowing where your food has been sourced is great to understand the background of what you are eating but also to know if it's value for money. If you're dining in a prestigious restaurant, you'll want to make sure that the produce is locally-sourced and worth the money. If they aren't able to tell you the origins of the food then the chances are that it's probably not local meat.

If the waiter doesn’t ask about any allergies

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A waiter asking if you have any allergies is a good sign! If the restaurant looks into their customers and the allergies they have this is a positive sign that they care. If you aren't asked, the preparation of food could be done in a way which is unsafe and causes cross contamination. Even if you have no allergies it's still best to be asked if you do before you eat to give you peace of mind.

Staff not following health and safety practices

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It goes without saying that restaurant staff must do their best to follow health and safety. It's really not worth the risk to eat out somewhere that you know aren't following all procedures correctly, even if they do take shortcuts to cut the wait time down. This saved time could cost you more that it was worth if you manage to pick up an infectious disease from the surfaces or the food you eat.

Condiments are out of date!

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Without fault, the first thing you should check when you get seated at a table in a restaurant is the condiments tray. Have a look at the dates on the bottles and if they're out of date it might be a sign you are in the wrong place for lunch. Clearly, the kitchen staff aren't looking at the condiments which means they're probably not checking all the stock in the kitchen. This massively increases the chance of you getting out of date food.

Old and tired furnishings in the restaurant

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When you walk into a restaurant you want to be greeted with a nice, bright area to eat your food at. If the furnishings are looking tired then you'll probably feel like just walking out anyway. However, it also means no money is being spent on the upkeep of the area. The kitchen could possibly be even worse! Who knows how much bacteria is festering in there.

Dirty-looking cutlery on the table

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Dirty cutlery raises a few reasons for eating at another place. Firstly, the cleanliness of it! Cutlery in restaurants are used by thousands of people a week, if it's busy, and this means that lots of people are putting their hands and mouths all over the cutlery. Many diseases or bacteria can spread rapidly if the cutlery hasn't been cleaned. Also, it's just disgusting!

The restaurant is full of dirty tables

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Like tired looking furnishings, a dirty table area is not a good look at all. Walking into a restaurant and seeing a bunch of dirty tables could be a strong reason to walk back out again. Not only does this mean that the tables are gathering bacteria it also means that the staff might be too busy to clean up! The likelihood is that the customer service you're about to receive will be pretty poor.

Flies are darting everywhere!

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It goes without saying if the restaurant you go to has a lot of flies lingering around then it's probably gonna be best to try somewhere new for a change. Flies carry so much bacteria from being sat on moldy foods or excrement... ew! Landing on your food or cutlery means they could contaminate with the harmful and disgusting bacteria they carry around. Also, they're pretty annoying.

The staff don't have a uniform

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There's a reason why many restaurants and fast-food branches opt for their staff to wear their work uniform inside the restaurant only. They can ensure the uniform is used only in a clean environment and the chances of contamination are decreased massively. If you go into a restaurant and they have no uniform at all it could mean that health and safety is not a priority. You should probably try Five Guys instead.

The whole restaurant is dirty and dusty looking

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Dust can be extremely dangerous, causing potentially a number of illnesses. Dust is made up of dead cells such as skin or dead insects and this isn't something you want to be greeted with when you are going for some food. Being around dust can cause your lungs to have a harder time at working and even cause lung cancer after a long exposure to a specific environment!

A very messy kitchen

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If you get lucky and are able to see the kitchen, take a long look. A chef might just be naturally pretty messy but there's no excuses when it comes to a restaurant. If the kitchen is messy then the chances of cross contamination are increased massively, leaving you with the risk of food poisoning like salmonella. If you can't see the kitchen maybe try round the back to have a cheeky peek.

Kitchen staff not wearing gloves

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If you happen to be lucky enough to walk past the kitchen then you wanna look to see how the staff are preparing the food. If they don't seem to have gloves on then get straight out of there and leave quickly! Chefs should wear gloves due to the amount of surfaces they touch. It's hard to avoid the amount of germs that can be picked up from going to places like the toilet or on public transport.

You're given a filthy glass

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Ready to take the first sip of that ice cold coke on a hot day and you see a dirty mark on the glass? The pure disappointment from this, right? Well don't let something like this keep you sitting in the restaurant. If the glasses are dirty then this means that the way they clean the glasses and plates isn't safe enough. If it looks dirty it's best to leave it for somewhere else.

The toilets don't get cleaned regularly!

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Obviously, if the toilets are dirty then it doesn't stand much hope for the rest of the restaurant. It also means that the staff in the restaurant are all using dirty toilets too. Nobody wants to think about their chef heading to the toilet in the middle of cooking the food, but it's especially bad if the toilets are looking a state. if the customer toilets look like that, then staff toilets are bound to be as bad.

Waiter reveals the worst things customers can do! Splitting the check between several people

image source: reddit.com
We all have times in our life when we go out with friends or family and the tip needs to split, and for the most part splitting it between two people isn't a big deal. But if you have a table of 10 people and each person wants to pay only for what they've had, that's going to be pretty annoying for the server to have to split several ways! Just get someone to pay in full and sort it out between yourselves later!

Shaking your empty glass at a passing waiter

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A lot of restaurants offer free reveals for soft drinks, or table service for drinks. If this is the case, the one thing you shouldn't do is shake your empty cup of ice at a distant waiter in a bid to have them refill your drink. Or hold up your empty glass and point because you're ready to order another drink. The waiter is probably doing a million other things in that moment and will come to you when they can!

Leaving your used chewing gum on your plate

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You might have had a quick freshen up with mint gum after your meal, and now faced with nowhere to spit it out. The logical - or at least decent - thing would be to wrap it up in a napkin and take it out with you to put in the first bin you find, but nope - some customers might actually dump the used chewing gum on the plate next to their food leftovers. Don't!

Going to a restaurant five minutes before closing

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Sure, you could say that TECHNICALLY they haven't closed yet and are still serving food... but really, five minutes before closing everyone is pretty much ready to go and mentally prepared to quit their shift. If you come in at that time, nobody - and we mean nobody, including kitchen staff, servers, bar staff - can leave until you're done. You've just made everyone stay when you could have just come earlier!

Or pretending you don't realize it's closing time when you're in there!

image source: reddit.com
This is equally as annoying, if you actually did go at a reasonable time to the restaurant but now you're still sat there mid conversation with a full drink when it's five minutes to closing. You've been reminded ten times by the waiter that they're almost closing, too, but you just nod and carry on. This just means everyone has to wait for you - the only people left in the restaurant.

Not telling the waiter which meal is yours when the plate is HOT

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It doesn't matter whether you're a couple, a table of three or a table of ten, those plates are hot and you should know straight away when you've ordered. So when a waiter is standing there with very hot and very heavy plates, it doesn't help when customers don't immediately say which plate is theirs. Even worse, when you say 'not mine' - it doesn't help!

Bragging about how good a tipper you are

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You don't need to brag or tell waiters in advance how much of a good tipper you are - and especially if you then end up leaving the minimum tip amount anyway! If you start off your meal with a big smile saying you're a huge tipper and the waiter doesn't need to worry, it's not even worth mentioning when you end up leaving 20% anyway. Even if you do leave a huge tip, why do you need to tell them before you've even eaten?

When customers get attached to one particular server

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This one is borderline harassment in some cases. If you eat regularly at a restaurant, there's bound to be one or two servers that you get to know or get along with very well, especially if they always serve you. What isn't okay is specifically asking for that server, or changing your whole routine to eat out specifically when they're working - or, worse, asking what their shift pattern is!

Parents telling waiters to control their own kids

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Some family friendly restaurants will have kids running everywhere, especially if there's a children's play area or kid's table area. What's not okay is if you're a parent sitting at the opposite end of the restaurant and then asking a passing waiter to go and tell your kid to quiet down, come back to the table or any other message you want passing down to them... that's not your server's job!

Changing your baby's diaper... at the table

image source: reddit.com
Speaking of children... This one has to be one of the most unhygienic and rude things a parent can do as a customer at a restaurant! There are baby changing facilities for a reason, and we get it, it's difficult if you're in the middle of a meal or if your child has bathroom issues out of nowhere, but you should never changing the diaper at the table or on the seat next to you!

Leaving anything but a tip on the tray

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The tip tray is there to leave a tip. If you don't want to and leave the tray empty, that's bad enough. But worse is to leave something else on the tip tray - anything but a tip, basically. Your dirty napkin, your used tissue, the wrapper from the chewing gum (that you probably left on the plate, too) or even a note that says 'thanks!. It's insulting and it doesn't help.

Leaving used medicine needles on plates

image source: reddit.com
If you have a medical condition that leaves you needing to use a needle while you're out and about, like an insulin injection, DO NOT leave the used needle on the plate when you're done as trash to be taken away! A needle is still a needle, and waiters could get pricked, the dishwasher could get pricked... it could even fall off the plate while being taken to the kitchen and a kid might find it!

Parents not keeping an eye on their kids AT ALL

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Restaurants can get extremely busy, but busy or not, you should be keeping an eye on your kids at all times. If not, kids are going to go wherever they want to go - including behind the bar, running behind kitchen doors that are swinging madly or - worse - venturing right into the kitchen with a whole ton of hazards in a place they shouldn't be!

Whistling or clicking fingers

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Servers are human beings, so you definitely shouldn't be whistling at them or clicking your fingers at them like a dog to be summoned! We get that restaurants can be noisy and waiters may not always see or hear you trying to get their attention, but you should just wait to be able to do it in a respectful way - or get up and go and speak to them instead of whistling!

Not being able to afford to leave a tip

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Servers need tips to add onto their minimum wage jobs, so it's pretty disappointing if they're not left a tip. The issue is, is that if you're going out for a meal, you should logically also be able to afford a tip on top of that. If you can't afford to leave a tip, you probably shouldn't be going out for a meal in the first place if money is that tight!

Pretending you're ready to order... when you're not

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It's okay to tell your server that you need five more minutes - taking ages to decide is much better than pretending you're ready and then having the waiter have to stand at your table and wait for 10 minutes while you still look at the menu when they could be doing something else! Don't say you're ready and then sit there going 'eeerrr' while still browsing the menu!

Making it hard to get the tip money ON PURPOSE

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Some people just like to be difficult, or amuse themselves by making it difficult for waiters or playing 'pranks' on them. One of these can be to leave the tip money, as you should, but decide you're not going to make it easy for your sever to get it! Instead of on the tip tray, you might roll it up and put it inside your empty cup, glass or even your straw! Creative ways to be very difficult.

Blaming waiters for touching your kids when the kids run up to you!

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As we said before, kids run EVERYWHERE in restaurants - we know it, you know it, servers know... This includes kids potentially running up to servers, taking their hand, tugging on them, wrapping themselves around their leg... but as a parent you shouldn't even then blame the server by saying they shouldn't have their hands on your kid, or be close to your kid. They can't help it if your unwatched child runs up to them!

Stacking plates

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This is one of those things that actually most people mean well when they do it, especially with big table numbers when they're trying to help the server clean up faster. But actually, it doesn't help at all - especially if you have bits of food left on each plate. The food can get stuck to the bottom of the other plates, while the entire stack may be too heavy or too risky to carry. Just leave your plates in front of you, as servers are trained to carry in a certain way easy for them!

Using religious things in place of a tip

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You should definitely leave any religious agenda at the door if you're eating in a restaurant when it comes to tips. Some people have a habit of leaving religious messages in place of tips, because they think that's a helpful thing to do! Servers aren't going to appreciate it if, instead of your 20% tip, they find a religious pamphlet on the tip tray with a message from God.