Server names on restaurant tables: Yea or nay?

After Utah, my husband and I stayed in Vegas for a few nights, and twice we went to a particularly good Thai restaurant. Each time, the server did something I’d never seen before:


She put her name on our table.

The first night our server was Grace. She had a heavy accent, so I assumed she put post-its with “Grace” on her tables simply to help communicate with patrons.

But then it happened again the second night with a server who had no accent at all, though she did have a very uncommon name: “Paow.”

Initially I thought the post-its were a clever idea. The restaurant was noisy, so it was nice to see Grace’s name written out, in case we needed it. And I figured the written-out names probably also helped with tips.

But on the second night, I started to question the practice. There were plenty of staff members around, so we never needed to ask for either Grace or Paow specifically. And, once I got over the novelty of it, I had to admit that the whole “post-it note on the table” look wasn’t exactly a classy one.

What’s your opinion on having server names on restaurant tables? Does it depend upon the type of restaurant?

8 thoughts on “Server names on restaurant tables: Yea or nay?

  1. I’ve been to a few restaurants where they do this too. One place they write their name in crayon on a paper table cloth. Depending on the restaurant I think it could be a nice touch. A post-it or crayon scribble doesn’t feel as nice as a pretty card.

  2. Interesting! If other places are doing it, then it’s more common than I would have guessed. :) I wonder when/where the name-on-the-table thing began.

    I agree — if a restaurant is going to ask servers to do this, a nice-looking card would be much better than a post-it or writing directly on the table (in crayon no less!).

  3. macaroni grill has full paper table cloths where the waiter writes their name upside down for the customers to be able to read.
    even with no kids at the table it’s hard not to pick up a crayon and doodle lol.
    I like it.

  4. Yeah, I could see the name thing working at kid-focused restaurants that already offer things like crayons and paper (or paper table cloths). It gets the doodling started. :)

  5. I think I like it. It seems better than the perky little “My name is ____” and sometimes you do need your server, so it is handy to not have to try and remember their name. #SITSSharefest

  6. It also helps if there is a busser who clears the table after the customers are gone know who the tip goes to if they happen to leave it on the table.

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