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Proper Table Manners: Dining Etiquette

Updated on September 9, 2013

Dining with your family or with other people on a special occasion is like establishing your personality. The way you behave while eating reflects so much about their impression on you. It is to your advantage to know how to conduct yourself while in a dinner.

Proper Table Manners

1. Maintain good posture. Legs should remain on the floor.

2. Try some every food served even if you don't like it or don't think you will. If you need to refuse a dish, do so simply without explanation. Later tell your host or hostess the reason in private place. If you have medical problems (like allergies, lactose intolerance, and etc.) that might limit your eating of common foods, tell your host/ess before the meal so he/she can be alerted and so you will know which foods to avoid.

3. Ask to have foods passed to you, rather than reaching in front of someone else or across the table.

4. Eat quietly with your mouth closed. Do not speak while your mouth is full.

5. Remove any "foreign matter" in your food discreetly. If the thought of eating the remaining food bothers you, simply do not eat it.

6. Take small bites. Eat all that you take on your fork or spoon in one bite.

7. Look neat and make cheerful conversation to make mealtimes pleasant.

8. Wipe your mouth with your napkin before you take a drink or speak.

9. You may rest your hands and wrists on the table. If there is no food on the table, you may may put your elbows on the table, too.

10. Pass food at the table to the right with your left hand.

11.Try not to blow on soup to cool it. It is not polite to do so.

12. Cut salad with knife if the pieces are too large to fit in your mouth.

13. Use a small piece of bread as a "pusher" to help guide food onto fork.

14. Break off a whole piece of bread or roll into two or more small pieces.

15. If you get something stuck in your teeth, excuse yourself and go to the restroom. Toothpicks should not be used at the table.

16. When you are done with courses other than the main course, turn the silverware you used upside down on the plate, making sure it will not fall off when the host/ess removes the plate.

Manners to Avoid When Dining with Other People

1. Do not encircle you dinner setting with your arms or "lounge" on the table.

2.Do not stir drinks loudly. Don't leave your spoon in your cup as you drink.

3. Do not smoke, apply makeup, brush hair, or perform similar tasks at the table.

4. Do not wave your silverware in the air as you talk, and don't talk with food in your mouth.

5. Do not take more than one bite off the same spoon or fork.

6. Do not blow on your food or beverage in an attempt to cool it. Leave it alone until it cools off.

7. Do not bring your mouth to your food. Bring your food to your mouth.


Submit a Comment

  • beth811 profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from Pearl of the Orient Seas

    Thank you too for your comment, Teresa.

  • Teresa Laurente profile image

    Maria Teresa Rodriguez - Laurente 

    8 years ago from San Antonio, Texas, U.S.A.

    Very useful, especially for the young. Thank you for sharing this beth811. More power.

  • beth811 profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from Pearl of the Orient Seas

    You're right, GH. Thanks for the visit.

  • GeneralHowitzer profile image

    Gener Geminiano 

    8 years ago from Land of Salt, Philippines

    Hehehe people tends to judge others with their table manners you have done good job here eh beth, thanks for the reminder... :D

  • beth811 profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from Pearl of the Orient Seas

    Of course, when eating alone there's no need for dining etiquette. But when with other people we need to observe proper table manners.

    Thanks for reading Maita.

  • prettydarkhorse profile image


    8 years ago from US

    sometimes when I am eating alone, I just don't mind the things you shared LOl< but when I am eating with other people I follow through, thanks Beth, Maita

  • beth811 profile imageAUTHOR


    8 years ago from Pearl of the Orient Seas

    And I wish more people would read this hub so that they may know. Thanks for the comment, Ambition.

  • Ambition398 profile image


    8 years ago

    Very good advice! I wish more people would follow it LOL.


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