Food Server Salary

Compensation for Food Servers includes a healthy addition of tips, which amount to an average $9.65 per hour out of the total hourly pay of $17.45. The hourly wage varies between $2.18 per hour and $10.33. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by experience level. Work is enjoyable for Food Servers, who typically claim high levels of job satisfaction. Medical and dental coverage is claimed by one-fifth, and close to a tenth earn vision coverage. There are more female Food Servers who answered the questionnaire than male, making up 62 percent. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$11,000 - $48,543
(Median)
$11K
$24K
$49K
MEDIAN: $24,489
10%
50%
90%

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$2.18 - $10.33
(Median)
$2
$7
$10
MEDIAN: $7.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$17K$34K$51K
Salary
$11,000 - $48,543  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $450.00  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$10,174 - $37,638  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 44
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$7$14$21
Hourly Rate
$2.18 - $10.33  
   
Hourly Tips
$1.15 - $16.97  
Overtime
$1.45 - $16.58  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$14K$28K$42K
Bonus
$0.00 - $450.00  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$10,174 - $37,638  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 20 Jun 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 342
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Job Description for Food Server

Food servers are tasked with taking orders accurately, answering guest questions about the menu or restaurant in general, and then delivering that food in a timely manner. A food server is also expected to perform quality control work by checking back with guests. The server also presents the check at the end of service and may process the payment. In restaurants without bus persons, the server also cleans and resets his or her table after guests depart.

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Food Server Tasks

  • Input the order to the kitchen.
  • Record the details of the order from the guests.
  • When complete, retrieve order the from kitchen, confirm its accuracy, and deliver to guest.
  • Greet guests in a friendly and courteous manner and explain any specials and restaurant promotions for guest awareness.
  • Operate procedures to pre-check order and close out the check.

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Pay by Experience Level for Food Server

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Food Servers do not generally earn higher incomes from more experience in the field. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $19K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $22K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Food Servers see a median salary of $23K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Veterans who have worked for more than two decades do tend to make the most in the end; the median pay for this group is $25K.

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Experience Affects Food Server Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 22%

Experienced
up arrow 15%

Mid-Career
up arrow 10%

National Average
$20,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 5%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 91 votes.

Gender

Female
62 %
Male
38 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
7%
1-4 years
44%
5-9 years
29%
10-19 years
11%
20 years or more
9%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 20% dental benefits Dental: 16%
vision benefits Vision: 10% employee benefits None: 78%
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