Waiters and waitresses


Average Annual Pay

Annual Survey of Hours and Earning 2018


Average Weekly Hours

Annual Survey of Hours and Earning 2018


Unemployment Rate

Labour Force Survey 2018

Future employment projections (Working Futures UK)


Waiters and waitresses serve food and beverages in hotels, clubs, restaurants and other establishments.


There are no formal academic entry requirements, though some employers may require GCSEs/S grades. Training is typically provided on-the-job. NVQs/SVQs in relevant areas are available at Levels 1 and 2.

Typical tasks

  • sets tables with clean linen, cutlery, crockery and glassware;
  • presents menus and wine lists to patrons and may describe dishes and advise on selection of food or wines;
  • takes down orders for food and/or drinks and passes order to kitchen and/or bar;
  • serves food and drinks;
  • presents bill and accepts payment at end of the meal.

Common job titles

Hostess, party (fast food outlet)
Maid, tea
Hostess (fast food outlet)
Steward, ship (catering)
Steward, car, dining
Waiter, restaurant
Waitress, service, silver
Organiser, party (fast food outlet)
Assistant, service, room (hotel)
Steward, wine
Runner (public house)
Runner, shift (fast food outlet)
Seater (catering)
Steward, mess
Hostess (public house, restaurant)
Steward, catering
Attendant, car, dining
Attendant, service, room (hotel)
Steward, messroom
Waiter, head
Waiter, service, silver
Maitre d'hotel
Steward (university: catering)
Waiter, ward
Assistant, conference and banqueting
Steward (canteen)
Steward, canteen
Worker, factory, fun
Waitress, ward
Steward (MOD)
Steward, chief
Chef de rang
Butler, wine
Runner (catering)
Waitress, head
Attendant, car, restaurant
Runner (restaurant)
Boy, saloon
Steward (shipping: catering)
Waiter, wine
Attendant, room, ward
Steward (railways)

Education background

Destination of Leavers survey, supplied by the Higher Education Statistics.