An all-you-can-eat buffet can be quite appealing for those who enjoy having a variety of dishes to choose from. Furthermore, buffets tend to be budget-friendly dining options, especially for those with lots of mouths to feed. Unfortunately, some people who dine at buffets don't understand the etiquette basics, which can result in poor cleanliness, wasted food, and even a poor experience for other guests. By following a few simple dos and don'ts, however, you can avoid being "that person" the next time you decide to enjoy a buffet meal.
DO Grab a New Plate
Any time you head up to the buffet for seconds, you should always grab a new plate and leave your old one at the table to be cleared by a member of the wait staff. The same goes for any utensils you may have used. Any sanitary buffet should have a large supply of clean plates and silverware at the beginning of the buffet line for you to choose from. The idea here is that by grabbing new plates and utensils with each trip you make to the buffet, you cut down on the chances of cross-contamination and the spread of germs.
DO Be Considerate
Sadly, manners are often overlooked at buffets. However, you can do your part to be considerate of both other patrons and members of the wait staff. For starters, before you get in line for the buffet, scope it out so you have an idea of what you want. This will keep you from holding up the line. Furthermore, never reach over or around another guest to reach something at the buffet; be polite and wait your turn. And don't rush to grab that last breadstick or slice of pizza; it's not like the kitchen won't replenish the supply once they run out.
Also, when you get up out of your seat to return to the buffet, be sure to leave your napkin on your chair as this will indicate to the wait staff that you plan on returning.
DON'T Be Wasteful
When you have so many food options to choose from, it can be tempting to load up your plates as much as you can. However, it's best to pace yourself, working with just one or two plates at a time. If you're still hungry afterwards, you can always return to the buffet. However, if you grab significantly more food than you can possibly eat, you're being wasteful; when enough people are wasteful with the buffet food, the restaurant may have no choice but to drive up their prices to make up for lost food costs. For more information, talk to a professional like Crico's Pizza & Subs.