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Food Server Salary

Median pay for Food Servers rounds out to $17.15 per hour, with $9.70 of that amount coming from tips and gratuity. The hourly wage generally stretches from $2.17 per hour to $10.33. Geographic location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by career length. The majority of Food Servers (61 percent) who took the survey are female. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. Just under a fifth enjoy medical and dental coverage in this occupation, and fewer than one in ten get vision benefits. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$10,305 - $47,678
(Median)
$10K
$24K
$48K
MEDIAN: $24,183
10%
50%
90%

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$2.17 - $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$16K$32K$48K
Salary
$10,305 - $47,678  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $491.76  
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).
)
$9,611 - $37,164  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 52
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
$2.17 - $10.33  
   
Hourly Tips
$1.94 - $16.78  
Overtime
$1.50 - $17.00  
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 - $491.76  
   
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).
)
$9,611 - $37,164  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 31 Mar 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 371

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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.

Food Server Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for Food Server

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


Although individuals who have less than five years' experience earn $19K on average, people with five to 10 years benefit from a notably larger average of $23K. Food Servers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $23K. Food Servers who surpass 20 years on the job report pay that isn't higher than those with 10 to 20 years.

United States (change)

Experience Affects Food Server Salaries

Experienced
up arrow 14%

Late-Career
up arrow 14%

Mid-Career
up arrow 13%

National Average
$20,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 5%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 98 votes.

Gender

Female
61 %
Male
39 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
7%
1-4 years
46%
5-9 years
28%
10-19 years
12%
20 years or more
8%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 19% dental benefits Dental: 15%
vision benefits Vision: 9% employee benefits None: 79%