Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

When you eat at a restaurant in the United States what do you say when you have to check on your order?

What if the waiter is slow?

How do you ask about it without sounding rude?

Find out today!


Hi Lindsay and Michelle,

Nice episode as always! Apologizing is really an interesting topic and you should do more of it! (EPISODE 526)

I have a question for you, and I’m sure many of us have been there before. Sometimes I am seated in a restaurant for too long before my food is served. I want to check with the server, but feel hesitant at the same time because I don’t want to sound pushy. So what is the proper phrase to use under this circumstance?



This is a tricky situation so it’s important to act in a kind way but you also need to get your point across and get an answer to your question.

What NOT to say: “When will my food be out?”

You should not use this phrase because it sounds abrupt.

Objectively speaking this sentence is fine but it will sound rude so you need to add more nuance to what you say.


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What should you say to find out what’s happening with your order?

  • “Hi I was wondering when the food might be out.” : When you use this phrase it’s more indirect. It sounds softer when you use “I was wondering” and “might” instead of “will.”
  • “Oh how is everything coming along?”:
  • “Any update on those fries?”
  • “Hi I just wanted to check on my pasta.”
  • “Any idea when my food might be coming out?” or “Any idea when my food will be out?”


Listen to the episode to hear these questions being used in a real conversation.

Let us know your questions below.

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