Is It Rude To Not Eat Anything At A Restaurant?

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Not Eating at A Restaurant

Is it rude to go inside a restaurant, sit down, and not order anything? If the restaurant is busy with a lot people ordering at the time that you come in, it can be considered an inconvenience for you to stay. It does depend on the owner and management of the restaurant, but they do generally expect when people walk into their establishment, that they are doing so because they are hungry and want to eat. Coming on the premise and not eating can draw attention to yourself.

So coming inside a restaurant to do nothing more than sit around with no purpose could be seen as loitering. They may approach you after a substantial amount of time and ask you to leave, even if you are just hanging around outside the doors in the patio area.

Depending on the restaurant and the time of day, they might be concerned for the safety of their employees and customers and may not see you as a potential buyer after a reasonable amount of time has passed.

On the other hand, some restaurants might not care what you do as long as you aren’t impeding their business or causing trouble. The fact is that I have seen both cases happen to me and others.

There has been a group of people sitting outside the restaurant hanging out and talking, and the manager didn’t care. They made it clear to the manager on duty that they weren’t there to eat. On the other hand, I have walked inside a coffee shop in the morning to sit and wait a few minutes until my restaurant opened, and have been asked to buy something or leave. I did the same thing at a donut shop and they didn’t care. It all depends on the person running the store at the time, and the time of day on whether it is considered rude or not to them.

Is It Rude To Buy Food At A Restaurant And Not Eat?

If you walked in a restaurant and ordered food, but didn’t eat it, they probably wouldn’t care. They are businesses trying to make a profit for the day. As long as they receive payment for their services, they generally won’t care if you eat the food or not. If you eat some of the food but don’t finish it, they probably won’t even give it a second thought.

However, finishing half of your meal or all of it, complaining about it, and then asking for a refund can be considered very rude to a restaurant. It is the fact that the food was eaten to a substantial amount and then a refund was requested, therefore wasting the time and money of the servers. This might be worse than walking in, not ordering anything, and leaving. Atleast they didn’t have to prepare a free meal for that individual.

Of course, if there is something legitimately wrong with the food, it shouldn’t be eaten, but it normally doesn’t take a person eating half of the food to figure that out.

Is It Rude To A Restaurant With Friends And Not Eat?

Restaurants probably won’t care if you show up to their establishment with your hungry friends and don’t eat. It happens more often than you know. Restaurants are used to a group of people coming inside to order, but someone not eating because they aren’t hungry.

People and families show up and order three or four meals for six people sometimes. They just assume that someone isn’t hungry, or either they are sharing their meal with someone else. Of course it might be considered rude if the entire group shows up and doesn’t eat. Restaurants want to have seats for their hungry customers.

If you come to a restaurant with your friends or family and don’t want to eat because you aren’t hungry, allergic to the food, or just plain don’t like the food the restaurant is serving, it is usually ok as long as everyone else is eating.

Is It Rude To Eat My Own Food At A Restaurant?

Yes, it can be considered rude to eat your own food that you prepared at home at a restaurant, unless you are an employee that works there. Their place isn’t a park or something to hang around and enjoy the scenery. It is for their valued customers. The seating they provide was made for the customers that buy the food. They make food for them to sit down and enjoy their meal.

However, it may not be rude if bread was bought from the restaurant to enjoy with hamburger meat that has been prepared at home, but this depends on the establishment. There are many cases where there are specific foods at a restaurant that everyone favors more, so they only want those items when they order from the restaurant.

It would be odd for a restaurant to turn down service to a customer because they only wanted the soup. Bringing your own bread to eat with the soup that you buy at a restaurant shouldn’t be seen as rude. You purchased food from them so you should be seen as a valued customer. Bringing your own soup to enjoy with packaged salted crackers that they are offering for free with their meals that you aren’t buying, is another story however. This can be considered rude and possibly loitering.

How To Not Appear Rude Without Eating Anything At A Restaurant

The best way to not appear as rude when going to a restaurant that you don’t plan to eat at it is to buy something anyways, even if you don’t plan on eating it.

Restaurants aren’t the same as going over our friends or families home to eat. They want to be compensated for their services, even if that means you don’t plan on buying anything and just want to hang out. This doesn’t mean that you should just throw them a tip and just hang out afterwards and send them on their way. They most likely won’t accept that. Instead, buy something anyways, or take a friend with you that is hungry and buy something from the restaurant for them to eat. This way you don’t appear rude and you have your order as a voucher to why you deserve to sit in the restaurant and enjoy your own company.

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