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Anyone ever waitressed?



Hello all...

I am in need for a second job....so i am thinking about waitressing at a local pub/restaurant in town.

I have never waitressed before and am nervous about the normal "routines" of a waitressing job...can you give me any tips/advice?

Thank you!


Senior Member

For a few years at both a nice restaurant and a pretty popular "dive" bar. On the positive side you can make $ if you work for a place that has some traffic. You also meet some nice people and it can be lots of fun.

On the other hand, depending on the place you work, it can be too much fun. I've had friends make some bad choices depending on the environment/atmosphere of the place and end up with drinking problems, etc.

It also can be very, very stressful when the rush is on. You really REALLY work your butt off. Kitchen staff take on an entirely different, sometimes hostile personality when the rush is on...and can seem to switch back to the nicest people in the world once it's over. If you are sensitive or easily offended, stay out of the kitchen...if you know what I mean. You may be expected to memorize the entire menu, greet people, take orders, prep some of the food AND do clean up all in the same place. Oh, and get drinks too.

It's exciting and fun...but certainly NOT a job for someone looking for stress free.

Best wishes!


Junior Member
If you can handle a classroom on kids...

you can handle a job waitressing!!!
Just invest in a really good pair of shoes (even if they are not fashionable) and maybe some support hoses!

Your feet and legs will hurt!


Senior Member
I waitressed for several years through college and while I was a permanent sub. It was exhausting, but I couldn't get better pay anywhere else. I worked at Applebee's and Friendly's (two mid-level restaurants), and made about $100 a night.

My legs and feet were REALLY tired every day. I don't think I can explain to you HOW tired they were, other than to say it felt like I had glass in my hips and my legs were rubber.

You also have to be very organized and have a good memory. You have to be able to multi-task (i.e. get drinks for one table, check on a meal for another at the grill, get and enter an order, and refill drinks for another table all in one trip.) You also have to be able to be friendly even when you're tired.

Try playing Diner Dash and you'll get an idea what it's like (except of course it's YOUR body that's doing all of that).

To be honest, I don't think I could do it now as a full-time teacher. Waitressing takes too much out of me to be able to function intellectually the next day.


Senior Member
I waitressed/bartended in college. I worked at a complete dive bar (I was the only non-family member to work there, but I'm Irish-so I fit right in and everyone would ask who's daughter I was!) and I also worked for one day at a more traditional place. I only lasted a day at the traditional place because I wasn't told that I would have to make my own change out of my own (self provided) till. I also had so much side work that I had to stay past my sceduled time. The third thing I didn't like about it-I worked lunch shift and the dining room was pretty small. I could have easily handled all the tables myself, but had to split it with two others.....so less tips!
I adored working at the dive bar, it was so much fun! A lot of hard work, but a blast every second. Definitely check out a few places first (stop in for a drink and watch the staff interacting with each other).


Depends on where you work

I waitressed all through high school and college summers. I agree multi-tasking is the biggest part of waitressing, and being fast at it. I also think that waitressing prepared me for teaching (cant get more multi-taskful than that) Why I said it depends on where you work is because I have worked in 2 fast paced diners, and 2 fine dinning restaurants. I would recommend the fine dinning, however they usually prefer people with experience (which I had) as for the $$ cant be better. In all 4 places I always made over 100 dollars a shift (usually 6 hours) so you can run your a** off in a diner for 100 bucks, or care for only a few tables in fine dinning for 100 bucks. For another example, my mom still waitresses in one of the dinners I worked at. She works about 30 hours a week, and takes home as much as me as a teacher! cant beat it! (although she can barely walk anymore!...she's 49) Also, if your state still allows smoking in restuarants, it really is not good for your health. I remember men sitting at the counter with smoke all around me. (before NY made smoke free restaurants.) Good Luck!


Senior Member
great money but

be prepared to run into or serve the parents of your students. Or the students themselves! One one DD's former teachers is a bartender at an upscale seafood place on the weekends. The restaurant is in one of these new lifestyle center shopping mall places springing up around the midwest. The bar can be seen from the sidewalk, and the fun thing to do on Fri and Sat nites is going to wave to Mr. Teacher/Bartender and then giggle and run away.

Another gal I was in grad school with said her dive bar weekend bartending job is the only thing that kept her sane.