Restaurant Role Play Part 5

English Restaurant Role Play English Listening Practice Restaurant Role Play 5

Welcome to our Daily English Listening Practice with this week’s series:

English Restaurant Role Play

If this is your first time here: Check out English Restaurant Role Play Part 1 for the beginning of the Restaurant Role Play and English Dialogue

American Restaurant: at the top
British Restaurant: scroll down

Looking for the transcripts? Download the American and British Restaurant Transcripts here

American Restaurants

USA – Clearing the Table

This American English clip is between a restaurant server and a customer.


Server: Hi guys, can I get these plates out of your way?

Customer: Oh, sure, thank you

Server: Can I interest you in a dessert?

Customer: Yes, please. Can we have a look at the menu?

Server: Yeah, of course, I’ll bring it right over.

Culture Notes:
“Can I clear this out the way? Can I get this out of your way?” Servers will usually ask if it’s okay to move plates out of the way. Even though we eat pretty quickly, clearing out the plates too early can make us feel rushed. If you aren’t finished with your meal you can easily answer very casually: “I’m still working on it” meaning you want to finish the end of the meal. When it comes to empty beer or wine glasses, servers will also ask if you’d like another one before they take them away, or if you’d like a refill on water, soda or tea, which are usually free!

USA – Leftovers – Box it Up

This American English clip is between a restaurant server and a customer.


Server: Hi guys, can I move some of these out of your way?

Customer: Yeah, could I actually get this to go please?

Server: Of course, of course, would you like that boxed up as well?

Customer: Uh, no thanks, I think I’m finished with that one.

Server: Okay, I’ll get this boxed up right away for you.

Culture Notes:
Americans are always taking leftovers home. It’s not unusual and most servers at casual restaurants will offer it at the end of the meal as well. “To-Go Boxes” are popular, and you might also hear phrases like “Can I get a doggie bag?” I don’t say this much in the city, but my Granny said it every time we went out to eat!
“We’d like this boxed up, please.” “Can you box this up, please?” “We’d like this to go, please.” “Can I get an iced tea to go?” These are all very common phrases, just don’t forget your leftovers in the car like I normally do!

USA – Pick up the Tab – Pay Altogether

This American English clip is between a restaurant hostess and a customer.


Server: Alright guys, can I interest you in a dessert this evening?

Customer: No thanks, couldn’t eat another bite. Could we just get the bill, please?

Server: Yes, of course, are you guys gonna be paying altogether or separate?

Customer: Just put it on my card, thanks.

Culture Notes:
When you pick up the tab, you pay for the entire meal. To be polite, most Americans will quietly slip their card or cash into the bill and hand it straight back to the server. You can also let the server know ahead of time by quietly asking them to bring you the bill. Americans don’t usually like to talk about money out loud unless we’re good friends or family. If you feel uncomfortable that someone paid for you, you can offer to pay next time by saying, “Thanks for that. We’d like to pick it up next time to say thanks.” meaning you’d like to pay the entire bill the next time.
It’s rude to argue about who is picking up the tab at the table. It makes your server feel uncomfortable and although it can be funny or lighthearted at first, you shouldn’t offer more than once (polite) or twice (a little uncomfortable) to pay, simply say you’ll pick it up next time.

USA – Split the Bill

This American English clip is between a restaurant server and 2 customers.


Server: Okay guys, here’s the bill whenever you’re ready, no rush.

Customer 1: Okay, so, how do you want to split this.

Customer 2: Well, I had more drinks than you guys so, I don’t mind putting in, like 40? And then you guys can pay for the rest of it?

Customer 1: Hi again, can we put 60 on this card and then let’s put 40 on the other one?

Server: Sure, no problem, I’ll take that for you

Culture Notes:
It’s very easy to split the bill in most restaurants as they will usually have a method in the computer for easy calculations. Ideally, tell the server at the beginning when you’re ordering to make it even easier. There a few ways you can split the bill:
“All separate checks, please.” This means that you’ll only pay for the food and drinks that you ordered.
“Put the appetizer on my check, please.” If you’re paying separately, but you’d like to add the dessert or someone else’s meal onto your bill, this is an easy phrase to use.
“Just split it down the middle.” Half and half. The total is split exactly in two. “Split it in 3, 4, 5…”
“We’d like to be on our own check.” Friends, couples or people sharing their meals can use this phrase to pay together.
**Note: Notice we don’t use the word money or the verb pay! Split it, Put it on, Separate, Together. Again, we just don’t like to talk about money! So we use lots of other casual words to make it easy.

USA – More Notes on Tipping

English Restaurant

Looking for the transcripts? Download the American and British Restaurant Transcripts here

UK – Clear the Table – Coffee or Tea

This British English clip is between a restaurant server and a customer.


Server: Hi there guys, are you all finished?

Customer: Oh, yes thanks, we’re stuffed.

Server: Could I tempt you with a dessert menu?

Customer: Probably not a dessert menu, do you have any coffees or teas?

Server: Sure, we have lots of different coffees, americanos, cappuccinos, and we’ve got fruit teas as well.

Customer: Okay, yeah, I think I’ll have a cappuccino actually.

Server: Absolutely.

Culture Notes:
It’s an easy way to show that you are finished with your meal is to put your knife and fork together in the middle of your plate. The waiter might be looking for this too, but if you forget and there isn’t any food left on your plate, a waiter will ask you if you are finished.

UK – Container

This British English clip is between a restaurant server and a customer.


Customer: Could I get a box for these leftovers?

Server: Uhm, we don’t have any containers for take-away, I can wrap it up for you.

Customer: Okay, that’ll work.

Culture Notes:
At the time of writing, getting containers or ‘to go boxes’ are not common in the UK. Some places might offer to wrap your leftovers up in foil, but don’t rely on this! The trend is probably starting to catch on, so maybe in a couple of years (2019 or whenever) it’ll be completely normal all across the UK.

UK – Put it on my Card

This British English clip is between a restaurant server and a customer.


Customer: You can just put it on my card.

Server: Okay, here’s the chip and pin, just pop your card in there, and enter your pin when you’re ready.

Customer: Okay, uhm, can I include the tip on this?

Server: Sure, the gratuity’s on the screen.

Customer: Oh, okay, thanks.

Server: Here’s your receipt.

Culture Notes:
Another word for ‘tip’ in the UK is ‘gratuity’. You’re not obliged to tip in the UK thanks to a minimum wage that is much higher than in the USA. If you do want to leave a tip, you can leave some extra cash when you pay the bill, or if you are paying by card, look for the ‘Enter Gratuity’ option and type in how much extra you want to tip. Electronic tips are usually split between the entire staff, while cash tips will probably only go to the server you gave it to.

UK – Split the Bill

This British English clip is between a restaurant server and a customer.


Customer: Hey, could we get the check, please.

Server: Okay, I’ll be right back with it. Okay, here’s the bill. Here you are. Would you like to pay separately or altogether?

Customer: Uhm actually, could we just split it half, please?

Server: Okay, that’s no problem. So that’ll be 45 each.

Customer: Okay, I’m gonna pay in cash and she’ll put the rest on her card.

Server: Okay, no problem.

UK – More Notes on Tipping

Any more questions on English Restaurant Role Play Dialogue or any questions on the Culture Notes? Let us know!


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