I’ll tell you about the first time we went to a restaurant in Rostock between French women, so that you don’t make the same mistakes.
First, try to arrive early to eat like, for example, before 8 pm.
We went together for our first restaurant at the Indian restaurant Arjun, the four of us arrived at 8.30 pm, a friend was to join us a little later. When we arrived, the restaurant was deserted and there was only one couple left, we just thought that people would arrive soon. It was only after a while that we realized that the customers had, in fact, already left.
If you arrive late, hurry up and order so that the waitress doesn’t make several trips back and forth for you.
Our last friend arrived around 9pm, we had already received our drinks and ordered our food. The waitress came shortly after her arrival to ask if she had made her choice (as she was indecisive and very chatty, she made the waitress come back twice, which may be normal at this time in France, but not for Germany, as we were the last customers.
Once you have finished your meal, pay and leave.
It’s not common in Germany to stay and chat for a long time after a meal. In France, it’s very often normal to talk for another hour, even if we have nothing to eat or drink, even if it’s 10:30 pm on weekdays. Eventually we realized that the waitress had almost finished her closing but was only waiting for one thing: us. We felt very bad and understood the little cultural difference problem and asked for the bill.
Remember to take some change with you.
Even in the center of Berlin you can find restaurants that don’t take cards, or only take visa payments. To avoid this awkward moment, make sure you withdraw money before you get to a bar or restaurant! When we arrived at the cash desk, the waitress, who was getting annoyed with our bad behavior, told us that she could not take our French credit cards. One of our friends had to run to the nearest ATM, which was closed after 10.30pm. It took her over 30 minutes to get back.
The meal was however delicious, and I thank the waitress for being so patient! Try to do some research on German culture before you go out so that you don’t appear disrespectful. Even though we didn’t want to
come across as unpleasant, I imagine the waitress blacklisted us and anyone with a “ze” same accent.