How to Take Food Order in Restaurant (SOP)

Many of my readers requested to write a tutorial on how to take order in hotel or restaurant. I hope this tutorial will help them all and let them know what are the basic procedures to take food order successfully in restaurant.

As you know Order taking is a skillful art for any waiter. After proper greeting and seating a waiter needs to wait for the guest to take order. Today, we will learn how to take food order in restaurant through step by step instruction.

Step-1: Observe your guest:

  • Be observant and use proper timing.
  • Smile, make eye contact and try to anticipate when the guest is ready to order e.g. when a guest closed the menu or look around, that is an indication that he/she is ready to order.

Step-2: Approach to the table:

  • Approach the guest table with a smile and maintain eye contact by saying: Excuse me Mr./Mrs./Ms… or Sir/Madam, may I take your order please.

Step-3: Suggestive selling:

  • Recommend your buffet to the guest by saying: May I suggest our (according to the meal period): breakfast buffet which consist of …. luncheon buffet which consist of ….. dinner buffet which consist of….
  • If the guest prefers to order from the a la carte menu, advise the guest of our daily specials or other promotion.
  • Offer further suggestions accordingly by saying: Excuse me Mr./Mrs./Ms…. or Sir/Madam, would you like to have an appetizer to start with, may I suggest our ….


May I suggest our …. soup, it is one of our most popular soup and it is ……

Step-4: Take the Order:

  • During the ordering process, note down the number of guests and items ordered in a sequential order corresponding to the seats on your order pad.
  • Take order from the lady first follow by an older gentleman or a guest and the host last.

Step-5: Repeat the Order:

  • After all the guests has ordered, repeat the order back (from the order pad) to the guests by saying ( in a clear, confident and polite manner): Excuse me Mr./Mrs./Ms…. or Sir/Madam, may I repeat your order please, they are…

Step-6: Before leaving the table:

  • When guest has acknowledged the order, thank guest politely and collect all menu.


  • Confirm with the guests if they would prefer to be served course by course or all the dishes at the same time (For guests who has ordered more than one dish or have different numbers of dishes).
  • Refer to the menu to identify the items that can be prepared with different methods or served with different sauces, etc. Ask the guests what they would prefer.
  • Always approach guest in a friendly and courteous manner.
  • Speak with a clear and confident tone.
  • Always approach and serve from the right hand side of the guest unless it is more practical and efficient to do it from the left.
  • Address guests by their name where possible. Name can be obtained from, reservation book/table plan or by asking host person or team leader or by introducing yourself and asking the guest directly.

Note: Previously we discuss on this issue in more theoretical way. Must Read this tutorial also: How to take guest orders in restaurants.


  1. All the chapters are very useful for hotelier and hospitality management student also, i want to buy everything from your blog. kindly advise hoe to buy easily.

  2. this is what exactly i want to develop my staff and sub staff of guest houses .
    tku very much

    early awaiting for other subject also .

    personal regards have a safe and happy orking day


    m.s.bhatnagar khor, neemuch m.p. india 458470 .


  3. If ever a customer wants to order the most recent with special request food ordered and she never want to repeat it again on the staff, is there a solution existing for that?

  4. I’m a teacher of English at a university in Chile and your articles are very useful for me a my students of Gastronomy and International Hotel Managements. Congratulations for the work you present here.

  5. I thank you for your web site. I was used to mobile to get through your teachings but all in vain, could not retrieve or get through any of your teachings that you sent me. I’ve now acquired a desk top computer and would like to study hotel management fully. I cant afford to go to college but i know if you send me a tutorial manual i will make it from A to z everything about hotel management. My address michael oyunge p.o box 15671-00503 nairobi KENYA.

  6. Goodday, Im a hotelier in Food and Beverage department. Im starting for a newly opened hotel. Can you send me a view of the SOP (Standard Operating Procedures). Would appreciate that. Thank you.

  7. can you please post the Different terminologies in Food and Beverage taking orders?thank you so much…..(*-*)

  8. I am an experienced hotelier, I now teach young student learning food and beverage service and Front office work. I would very much appreciate if you will send me some training materials for WAITERS AND FRONT OFFICE STAFF.

  9. I like the minute details you have gone into.
    Eg: collect all the menu cards before leaving….
    preference to be served course wise or all together…

    Here are a few additional tips on order taking:
    The guest value your suggestions, use phrases like ” this is my personal favourite”
    For suggestive selling i have found the phrase ” can i tempt you with….( another glass of wine)/(dish of the day) “, to be very effective.

    Thank you for the wonderful article.
    .-= Srinath Achar´s last blog ..Jogging Vs Walking =-.


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