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BamaGirl November 15th, 2017 5:36pm

Etiquette discussion - You are at a restaurant & having a post-dinner conversation. Is it rude to move your plate to the side provided it’s not in front of someone else? (Assume family style or casual restaurant.)

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Krystina Let Freedom Reign
01/07/18 11:10 pm

Goodness, I hope not. I do that all the time. I don’t like to have a half eaten plate of food in front of me after I’m done.

ladyniner81 no hope for humanity
11/17/17 7:41 am

If you put it on the side it lets the waitress know you're done. I always forget about the silverware so I put it on the plate while she's taking it away. (I'm terrible I know)

Laserbeam Crazy bird lady
11/16/17 3:51 am

Why not just have the waiter take it? Are we too shy to speak to strangers and be a functioning member of society in this scenario?

BamaGirl ROLL TIDE from Arizona
11/16/17 7:23 am

Maybe the waiter is really busy & not around.

Laserbeam Crazy bird lady
11/16/17 10:36 am

I can’t say I’ve ever worked as a waitress, but isn’t their first (and maybe only) priority to tend to the tables they’ve been assigned?

lcamino Florida and Georgia
11/15/17 4:56 pm

After I’m finished, I put my fork and knife across my plate. Hopefully a waitperson will clear it from the table. If they don’t, and we are lingering over a drink or desert, I have no problem moving the dirty plate out of the way.

Shazam Scaramouche, OH
11/16/17 5:32 am

In Germany (maybe all Europe?), diners place cutlery on side edges of plate if they're still eating, but taking a break, crossed (🛠) on plate if they disliked it, and parallel like you describe if finished and everything OK.


RussianThunder Russia and USA
11/15/17 4:43 pm

In Russia I was taught it was rude. When you are done, you cross the cutlery on the plate. However, putting it to the side was the norm.
In the US it is the norm and I don’t think rude.

Vietman manhattan
11/15/17 2:39 pm

The three best ways to signal your server to take your plate are these:
1: Put the plate to the side/middle of the table
2: cover the plate with your napkin
3: finishing your plate

Praetorianus Fair enough.
11/15/17 3:57 pm

There's a fourth: put knife/fork side by side on the plate.

Laserbeam Crazy bird lady
11/16/17 3:52 am

There’s a 5th: do nothing and just wait for the waiter to come by and do their job.

Harry3603 Tampa Bay Florida.
11/15/17 1:09 pm

No. It signals the server that it is okay to removed the unused plate and dinnerware.

JulieB The Lake House
11/15/17 11:57 am

I don't have a problem with it, but you can always cross your silverware over the plate so that your server knows you are done.

mitchman399 Oregon
11/15/17 11:45 am

I think this is polite.

gonzoboy Arizona
11/15/17 11:38 am

I do this routinely! Whether I’m having conversation, or not; whether I’m by myself, or not; whether anyone else is still eating or not, when I’m done I will neatly stack my plates, place silverware on top, lay my napkin over it, and move it to the side. It is nearly always picked up by SOMEone, and always express their appreciation! :)

TopsQueen Oregon Coast
11/15/17 11:04 am

Not at all. ❤️

BamaGirl ROLL TIDE from Arizona
11/15/17 10:59 am

I don’t think so. I just listened to a discussion on this & thought it would make a good poll.

JustHarry FL
11/15/17 10:48 am

Let’s the waiter know he a take the plate.
Agree with statement that no one should have plate removed before everyone is finished eating. That is rude!

susanr Colorado
11/15/17 10:46 am

I don't see it as rude. I'm not sure what would be perceived as rude.

Wino I need a drink
11/15/17 10:43 am

As long as it’s not the in front of someone, it should be fine.
That being said, I was always taught you leave all plates where they were until everyone is finished eating. It’s not something I would do and something I would correct my children on. Mostly because the only reason to move the plate would be because your hands or part of your body is on the table and, unless eating, that should not be done (according to etiquette).

11/15/17 10:41 am

Not rude in any restaurant