Whether you’re eating at home or in a restaurant, it is important to practice proper table manners. Aside from the fact that this will help other diners feel comfortable, following correct dining etiquettes will prevent social embarrassment, on your part and the part of your dining companions.
Since proper table manners are seldom taught in schools nowadays, this guide will help you do a self-check, so you’ll be prepared the next time you dine out.
1. If you are invited to an event or a dinner gathering, respond before the specified deadline.
The RSVP or Respondez S’il Vous Plait that you see on invites means “Please Respond.” Be mindful of the schedule specified in the RSVP card or section. You should always respond on time, not on the day the event. Additionally, when you respond to an invite, be sure to include relevant details like your food allergies or restrictions.
2. Once at the venue, please wait to be seated.
Do not run off to a table without verifying if there is a seating position. Consult with the assigned individuals to find out to which table you are assigned and wait for someone to take you there. On regular days in restaurants, you have to wait to be seated.
3. When you are seated, get your table napkin and place it on your lap.
Table napkins are normally used for wiping your lips, but they can also be used to prevent food from dropping to your clothes or on the floor. This is why you should unfold your table napkin and place it on your lap.
4. Eat with your mouth closed.
And do not talk when your mouth is filled with food.
5. Use your utensils properly.
When they are not in use, the knife and fork should be on the sides of your plate. Once you are done eating, position your utensils side by side and place them at the center of your plate.
6. Avoid talking loudly while at the dining table.
If you need to talk, make sure that you don’t shout or talk loudly. Loud talking will distract not only your dining companions but also the diners at the other tables.
7. Do not display your mobile phone on the dining table.
Do not use your mobile phone during the entire dinner. Answer only emergency calls and messages. This is why you should never place your mobile phone on the dining table.