Nowadays many people consider etiquette to be unnecessary and obsolete. But the point of having good manners is not about following hundreds of little rules and formalities blindly, but first and foremost it’s about respecting other people no matter who they are. As Jean de La Bruyère, a French philosopher and moralist said, “The point of being polite is the ability to speak and act so that other people are not bothered by us.”
We have collected some simple dining etiquette rules to follow while on dates or when meeting with friends. If you follow these rules, you’ll feel confident at any event and the people you are with will think of you as a nice, polite person.
Etiquette rules at official receptions and banquets
- Places for guests. If there is no seating plan, guests should wait standing until the host of the event shows them their seats. In a traditional seating plan, the host of the event sits at the head of the table, the places right next to them are for the most honorable guests, and young people with children sit at the other end.
- Ladies sit at the table first andmen stay standing until the ladies take their seats. Men help ladies sit down and move the chairs out for them.
- Those who are late are not to keep everyone waiting for more than 20 minutes. If you are late, apologize and join the conversation (without going into detail about why you are late).
- If you can’t drink certain beverages or eat certain foods because of your diet or medical condition, don’t tell everyone about it as not to offend the hosts of the event. Just don’t eat these foods.
- This may sound surprising, but toothpicks should be in the bathroom and not on the table. You can use a toothpick or eyedrops, fix your hair or makeup and other parts of your body only in the bathroom.c