Waitress Interview Questions & Answers

  1. Question 1. Why Do You Want To Work At This Restaurant As Waitress?

    Answer :

    I really like the kind of food the restaurant serves. I love Italian food and I wanted to apply for a job where I could show my passion for the food when customers ask me questions.

  2. Question 2. Can You Explain What Is Your Greatest Strength?

    Answer :

    This is your time to shine. Just remember the interviewer is looking for work related strengths. Mention a number of them such as being a good motivator, problem solver, performing well under pressure, loyal, positive attitude, eager to learn, taking the initiative, attention to detail. Whichever you go for, be prepared to give examples that illustrate this particular skill.

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  4. Question 3. Explain Me Do You Like Working In A Team?

    Answer :

    Your answer is of course that you are an excellent team player; there really is no other valid answer here as you will not function in an organization as a loner. You may want to mention what type of role you tend to adopt in a team, especially if you want to emphasize key skills such as leadership. Be prepared to give specific examples in a very matter of fact sort of way.

  5. Question 4. Do You Know About This Organization?

    Answer :

    Do your homework prior to the interview. Doing the background work will help you stand out. Find out who the main players are — have they been in the news recently? You’re not expected to know every date and individual but you need to have a solid understanding of the company as a whole.

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  7. Question 5. Tell Us Are You Comfortable Carrying Serving Plates?

    Answer :

    I can comfortably carry two plates from the kitchen to the restaurant. Depending on the plates, I can sometimes carry three at a time

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  9. Question 6. Tell Me What Is Your Favourite Part About Being A Waitress?

    Answer :

    Waitress gives me the opportunity to learn on my feet and I get to serve different customers. As there are new people in the restaurant every day, it means every day is different.

  10. Question 7. Tell Us What Would Your Previous Co-workers Say About You?

    Answer :

    This is not the arena for full disclosure. You want to stay positive and add a few specific statements or paraphrase. Something like “Joe Blogs always mentioned how reliable and hard working I was” is enough.

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  12. Question 8. Explain Me One Of Your Proudest Moments At Work?

    Answer :

    This question is excellent! It tells me what they most value in their own abilities, what they see as important and shows their potential as an employee.

  13. Question 9. Tell Me Have You Ever Had To Bend The Rules In Order To Achieve A Goal?

    Answer :

    Beware of this type of question! Under no circumstances is it necessary to break company policy to achieve something. Resist the temptation to answer and give examples, as what the interviewer is looking for is to determine how ethical you are and if you will remain true to company policy.

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  15. Question 10. Tell Me What Does Hospitality Mean To You And How Can You Show That To Our Guest?

    Answer :

    The first part of this question is easy. Everyone can answer it. The second part is where people stumble. Service steps for implementation can be blurry so a clear answer really shows me something about the candidate.

  16. Question 11. Explain Me A Time You Had To Overcome A Challenge?

    Answer :

    In my last job, I had to work on Christmas Day. As it was busy, I had to help look after three Christmas parties and it was very challenging. As I was working with another waitress, we worked as a team to serve the larger parties together so they did not have to wait longer for their food to be served. I had to keep on my toes as food was coming out quick and customers wanted more drinks.

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  18. Question 12. Explain Me What Sort Of Person Do You Not Like To Work With?

    Answer :

    This is not an easy one as you have no idea whom you would be working with. Even if you can immediately think of a long list of people who you don’t like to work with, you could take some time to think and say that it’s a difficult question as you have always gotten on fine with your colleagues.

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  20. Question 13. Tell Me What Do You Love About Working In A Restaurant? What Do You Hate?

    Answer :

    The answers are very enlightening about their attitude, personality and commitment. I also ask what do they like eating and cooking. And what scares them the most.

  21. Question 14. Tell Me Do You Have Experience Making And/or Serving Desserts?

    Answer :

    I’ve got experience making ice cream sundaes. When I first started at my last job, my manager taught me how to make them correctly and since then I followed the recipe and instructions.

  22. Question 15. Tell Me What Has Been Your Biggest Professional Disappointment/achievement So Far?

    Answer :

    If asked about disappointments, mention something that was beyond your control. Stay positive by showing how you accepted the situation and have no lingering negative feelings. If asked about your greatest achievement, choose an example that was important to you as well as the company. Specify what you did, how you did it and what the results were. Ideally, pick an example that can relate to the positions you are applying for.

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  24. Question 16. Tell Me Have You Dined With Us? How Could Our Service Improve?

    Answer :

    If they have dined with us I get feedback about the restaurant I run from a servers perspective, that’s pretty powerful. If they haven’t dined with us then I assume that we are one of many restaurants that received their application and I can ask them questions based on that. If they haven’t dined with us then I can still ask about their last dining experience, what they would have improved if they had had the power to do so.

  25. Question 17. Tell Me How Would You Deal With An Angry Customer?

    Answer :

    After listening to the customer, I would try and think of a solution. If I’m unable to deal with the problem myself, I’d find my manager or another senior member of staff.

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  27. Question 18. Explain Me Regarding Salary, What Are Your Expectations?

    Answer :

    This question is always a tricky one and a dangerous game to play in an interview. It is a common mistake to discuss salary before you have sold yourself, and like in any negotiation, knowledge is power. Do your homework and make sure you have an idea of what this job is offering. You can try asking them about the salary range. If you want to avoid the question altogether, you could say that at the moment, you are looking to advance in your career and money isn’t your main motivator. If you do have a specific figure in mind and you are confident you can get it, then it may be worth going for it.

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  29. Question 19. Why Did You Leave Your Previous Job (or Why Are You Looking For Another Job)?

    Answer :

    On the surface, this appears to be a simple question, yet it is easy to slip. I would suggest not mentioning money at this stage as you may come across as totally mercenary. If you are currently employed, you can say it’s about developing your career and yourself as an individual. If you are in the unfortunate position of having been downsized, stay positive and keep it brief. If you were fired, you should have a solid explanation. whatever your circumstances, do not talk about the drama but remember to stay positive.

  30. Question 20. Explain Me Why Are You Leaving Your Current Job?

    Answer :

    People become very candid when they answer. If their reason is anything like they just want to make more money, didn’t like the management or had problems getting along with others, those are red flags.

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  32. Question 21. Tell Me Do You Have Bar Experience?

    Answer :

    I used to work on a bar a couple of years ago. I learned how to make cocktails and pour draught beer.

  33. Question 22. Tell Me Do You Have Any Questions For Us?

    Answer :

    This one tends to come up every time. Have some questions prepared.

    This will show you have done some research and are eager to know and learn as much as possible. You probably don’t want to ask more than three or four questions. Try and use questions that focus on you becoming an asset to the company. A generic question might be “how soon can I start if I were to get the job.” Another idea is to ask what you would be working on and how quickly they expect you to be able to be productive. Remember to ask about next steps and when you can expect to hear back.

  34. Question 23. Tell Me How Do You Handle Stressful Situations And Working Under Pressure?

    Answer :

    There are several ways of addressing this one. You may be the sort of person that works well under pressure; you may even thrive under pressure. Whatever the case, make sure you don’t say you panic. You want to give specific examples of stressful situations and how well you dealt with them. You may also want to list a few tools you use to help you, such as to-do lists, etc. It is alright to say that you will ask for assistance when the job is more than what you can handle. It is equally acceptable to say that you work best under pressure if this is indeed the case and relevant to the particular role.

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  36. Question 24. Tell Me How The World’s Smartest Company Selects The Most Creative Thinkers?

    Answer :

    It is something in the gut that tells you within the first 5 minutes of meeting someone whether or not you like this person (or want to hire this person).

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  38. Question 25. Explain Me What Do You Do In Your Free Time?

    Answer :

    In my free time I like going out with my friends. On the weekends, we enjoy going shopping. I particularly like going in clothes shops like H&M and Zara. When I can, I like going to the cinema and seeing the latest blockbuster films like Avengers Assemble.

  39. Question 26. Tell Me What Skills Do You Possess Specifically That Help You In Your Role As A Waiter?

    Answer :

    I am a pleasant individual with exceptional experience in servicing patrons so that they leave happy and come back for more. My suggestive selling skills are impeccable and my knowledge of handling food and beverage services is also quite well-placed.

  40. Question 27. Tell Me What Do You Drink? What Are Your Go-to Wines, Personally?

    Answer :

    The great thing about this question is that it puts them at ease, and lets them answer without feeling like there is a right and wrong answer. But, the answer to this shows me to what extent they are passionate about food and wine. If their answer is “Cabernet”, without much explanation, it suggests that they do not spend much time learning about wine and expanding their knowledge. But, if they say “I’m a fan of Thai food, so a German Riesling, especially from Mosel or Nahe, are personal favorites” I gather that their passion for food and wine doesn’t stop when they leave work.

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  42. Question 28. Tell Us Why Do You Think You Would Make A Great Addition To Our Team?

    Answer :

    I’ve worked in restaurants before and I think I got along with everyone I worked with. I do my job and I’m happy to help if anyone ever needs it. I enjoy having a laugh with my colleagues and getting to know them.

  43. Question 29. Suppose You Were Required To Fill In The Shoes Of A Cashier For A Week, Would You Be Able To Do Justice To It?

    Answer :

    Definitely. I am well-versed in handling POS systems and can easily process both cash and credit card payments, along with making sure that the cash drawer is balanced at the end of the shift.

  44. Question 30. Suppose A Guest Presents You With A Coupon Which Clearly Reads, “not Valid With Any Other Offers Or Discounts” And They Try To Use Two Offers, How Would You React?

    Answer :

    In an industry that is all about saying yes, it is sometimes difficult to say no. Many professional servers are very anxious when it comes to defining policy and thinking of the company’s bottom line rather than their own. Sometimes small conflicts occur and must be addressed. This question is a great way to find out how they would react to this un-common but inevitable scenario.

  45. Question 31. Explain Me About A Suggestion That You Have Made That Has Been Successfully Implemented?

    Answer :

    Here the emphasis is on the implemented. You may have had many brilliant ideas, but what the interviewer is looking for is something that has actually materialized. Be prepared to briefly describe how it went from an idea to implementation stage.

  46. Question 32. Suppose I Were To Ask Your Past Co-workers Which You Were Best At: Guest Interaction, Food Knowledge, Keeping The Place Clean Or Creating A Fun Work Environment, What Would They Answer?

    Answer :

    All of these attributes (in my own opinion) are extremely important so there is no “right” answer. Sometimes there is a “personality/specialty” gap in the team that needs to be filled. If we are having a problem with the team keeping things clean and organized, I might be more interested in the person that thinks their past co-workers would classify them being super clean.

  47. Question 33. Tell Me How Much Money In Comps Will We Spend Getting You Up To Speed If We Hire You For This Position?

    Answer :

    I have actually never been asked this, but think it would be a great question. Every manager knows that s*^% can hit the fan, especially for the poor new guy. The poor new guy knows this as well. I believe asking this question will make the server talk about their past mistakes, (if they admit to any). It will also open a gateway for conversation about their past mistakes; how they handled them and if they own them, or if they pass the buck and blame others.

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  49. Question 34. Explain Me Have You Worked Long Shifts Before? Do You Feel Comfortable Working On Your Feet?

    Answer :

    I’ve worked in similar busy jobs where I’ve had to be on my feet for most of my shift. I’m used to it and I enjoy this type of work.

  50. Question 35. Tell Me How Would You Handle A Situation In Which A Customer’s Order Was Delivered Incorrectly And He Wasn’t Too Pleased About It?

    Answer :

    As my training dictates, I will apologize to the customer and make sure that a new order is expedited. I will then look into the matter to determine why an incorrect order was sent.

  51. Question 36. Explain How Do You Garnish A Manhattan? What Is Bourbon? What Is “perfect” In A Martini Order?

    Answer :

    I can’t tell you the amount of times I have hired an “experienced” server, only to find out that their alcohol knowledge is horrible. I can train them, but in a full service bar or restaurant, it is so much more helpful if they come in with the proper knowledge that every server should have anyway. Asking them these questions helps me qualify them; are they the right fit for my restaurant?

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  53. Question 37. Tell Me Can You Make Coffee Using A Coffee Machine?

    Answer :

    I have experience working as a barista, so I’m happy to use the machines when I need to.

  54. Question 38. Explain What Do You Like Least About Being A Waitress?

    Answer :

    I suppose my least favourite part of waitressing is when you get an unhappy customer. Sometimes you get that customer who was in a bad mood when they arrived and they’re unhappy with everything you do. It’s alright, I’m used to it and I know how to remain professional throughout the situation.

  55. Question 39. Explain Me What Kind Of Decisions Do You Find Most Difficult To Take?

    Answer :

    There is no right or wrong answer here. The logic behind this type of question is that your past behaviour is likely to predict what you will do in the future. What the interviewer is looking for is to understand what you find difficult.

  56. Question 40. Why Do You Want This Job As Waitress?

    Answer :

    This question typically follows on from the previous one. Here is where your research will come in handy. You may want to say that you want to work for a company that is x, y, z, (market leader, innovator, provides a vital service, whatever it may be). Put some thought into this beforehand, be specific and link the company’s values and mission statement to your own goals and career plans.

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  58. Question 41. Tell Me Do You Think That Suggestive Selling Is Unethical?

    Answer :

    No, I don’t believe that it is. Through suggestive selling, one is simply reminding a customer if he or she may be forgetting to order something, or providing them with information on what else is available that they may like. While it may generate additional revenue for the restaurant, it also provides satisfaction to the patrons.

  59. Question 42. Tell Me What’s Your Favorite Restaurant Dining Memory?

    Answer :

    I like this question because an applicant’s answer gives me a lot of information on whether or not they’re a “food person” or someone who doesn’t necessarily love food but just has a history of waiting gigs. Either situation is totally okay, but I prefer people who themselves love dining as opposed to just eating.

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  61. Question 43. Explain Me A Time You Made A Mistake When Serving A Customer?

    Answer :

    I took a food order and accidentally wrote down chicken burger instead of beef burger. When I brought the order, I realised I had made a mistake, I was obviously embarrassed. I apologised to the customer, who was thankfully very nice about it and then I went to the chefs who were about to get a beef burger ready in 10 minutes. I served it to the customer and apologised again.

  62. Question 44. Tell Me Can You Prepare Tables?

    Answer :

    Yes, in my last job as a waitress I had to set out cutlery correctly. I know how to set out different types of wine glasses when preparing a table.

  63. Question 45. Why Should We Hire You As Waitress?

    Answer :

    It is your chance to stand out and draw attention to your skills, especially those that haven’t already been addressed. Saying “because I need a job” or “I’m really good” just won’t cut it. Don’t speculate about other candidates and their possible strengths or flaws. Make sure you focus on you. Explain why you make a good employee, why you are a good fit for the job and the company and what you can offer.

    Keep it succinct and highlight your achievements.

  64. Question 46. Can You Explain What Is Your Biggest Weakness?

    Answer :

    This is a challenging question — as if you have no weaknesses you are obviously lying! Be realistic and mention a small work related flaw.

    Many people will suggest answering this using a positive trait disguised as a flaw such as “I’m a perfectionist” or “I expect others to be as committed as I am.” I would advocate a certain degree of honesty and list a true weakness. Emphasize what you’ve done to overcome it and improve. This question is all about how you perceive and evaluate yourself.

  65. Question 47. Do You Know Who Are Our Main Competitors?

    Answer :

    Think about a few and say how you think they compare (similarities, differences). This is a good opportunity to highlight what you think are the company’s key strengths.

  66. Question 48. Explain Me What Have Been Your Main Duties As A Waiter In The Past?

    Answer :

    Greeting and seating customers, offering menus, providing suggestions according to their specific likes, responding to customers’ questions regarding ingredients and cooking times, and ensuring that all orders are delivered on time, I have handled it all! 

  67. Question 49. Tell Me May I Walk You To Your Car?

    Answer :

    One other thing I like to do is have a candidate walk me out to their car at the end of the interview where I look to see how well they treat what is likely their most expensive and important possession. If it is disgusting, I try to think how they will treat the things that don’t belong to them. This serves as a fairly accurate barometer.

  68. Question 50. Tell Me What Do You Expect Your Daily Responsibilities Will Be If You Got This Job?

    Answer :

    From your job advert, I thought it would be a normal waitress role. Taking orders, serving meals, cleaning tables and helping with drink orders. I remember the advert saying that you would need the candidate to work every other Sunday, which I’m happy to do.

  69. Question 51. Explain Me What Is Your Knowledge Like On Wines?

    Answer :

    I’m not much of a wine drinker but I have a good sense of which wines pair well with certain foods, because of my previous experience as a waitress. If I started working here, I would like to have a look at the wine list and find out which dishes work best with which wines. So if a customers asks me, I can give them a good recommendation.

  70. Question 52. What Experience Do You Have As Waitress?

    Answer :

    I have experience working in another restaurant, I worked busy shifts and I’m used to serving large parties. From my experience I feel comfortable talking to customers.

  71. Question 53. Explain Are You Willing To Travel Or Relocate If Necessary?

    Answer :

    This is something you need to have very clear in your mind prior to the meeting. There is no point in saying yes just to get the job if the real answer is actually no. Just be honest as this can save you problems arising in the future.

  72. Question 54. Tell Us Are You Applying For Other Jobs?

    Answer :

    If you are serious about changing jobs then it is likely that you are applying to other positions. It is also a way of showing that you are in demand. Be honest but don’t go into too much detail; you don’t want to spend a great deal of time on this. If asked about names of who you have spoken to, it is absolutely legitimate to say you prefer not to disclose that information at this stage.

  73. Question 55. Explain Me A Little Bit About Yourself?

    Answer :

    This is probably the most asked question in an interview. It breaks the ice and gets you to talk about something you should be fairly comfortable with. Have something prepared that doesn’t sound rehearsed. It’s not about you telling your life story and quite frankly, the interviewer just isn’t interested. Unless asked to do so, stick to your education, career and current situation. Work through it chronologically from the furthest back to the present.

  74. Question 56. As A Waitress, How Do You Feel About Working On Your Feet For Long Periods Of Time?

    Answer :

    Staying on one’s feet comes with the territory and doesn’t really bother me. My work is demanding so it keeps me on my toes, taking the edge off feeling tired.

  75. Question 57. Tell Me How Do You Gauge The Success Of A Restaurant?

    Answer :

    By seeing their definition of a successful restaurant I can gain an understanding of their priorities or, at the very least, see if their mentality is in alignment with ours. Some people might think a successful restaurant is one that is a James Beard award winner while others define success as a strong and respectful team that provides excellent service on a regular basis.