How to Practice Carrying a Waiter's Tray to Get a Job at a Restaurant

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Carrying a tray loaded with dishes can be more difficult than you think.
Carrying a tray loaded with dishes can be more difficult than you think. (Image: waiter with tray image by Arkady Chubykin from Fotolia.com)

While carrying a tray across a restaurant seems simple, it can actually be somewhat difficult, especially if it's loaded with heavy places, bowls and glasses filled with food. This is why it's necessary to practice to secure a serving position in a restaurant, especially if you don't already have the best balance. You want to show the hiring manager that you can balance the tray, carrying it efficiently and keeping your cool if people or objects get in your way.

Things You'll Need

  • Tray
  • Plates
  • Bowls
  • Dishes

Carrying the Tray

Begin by carrying a tray so that it is balanced on the palm of your hand, not just your fingers. It should lie flat on the palm of your dominant hand, and your hand should be balanced in the middle.

Practice walking around your home like this with the tray empty. Practice turning around, walking distances, making sharp turns around corners and lifting up a bit as if something that is shorter than you is in the way.

Continue until you have mastered balancing the empty tray.

Begin to add objects to your tray. Start by gathering a few empty glasses, plates and bowls.

Place the heaviest objects in the middle of the tray. This is so that your hand will directly support these heavier objects.

Place the lighter objects around the heaviest object, working your way from the middle of the tray to the edges. Continue your practice by walking around your home, turning around, walking distances, making sharp turns around corners and lifting up.

Setting the Tray on the Table

Bend your knees and lower yourself slowly.

Lower your arm that is carrying the tray, keeping the tray balanced. Do not tip the tray as you lower yourself.

Reach over with your other hand to support the tray.

Set it on the table.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you don't have a tray at home to practice with, a laundry basket will work.

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