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Food Server Salary

Average hourly pay for Food Servers is often heavily supplemented by tips and totals around $17.22 (including $9.60 from gratuities). Hourly earnings reach $2.17 per hour on the low end and $10.41 on the high end. Residence is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by experience level. Female Food Servers are more common than men among those who completed the survey; more than half (63 percent) are women. For the most part, Food Servers enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. Just under one-fifth report receiving medical and dental coverage from their employers and fewer than one in ten collect vision insurance. The data in this summary comes from the PayScale salary survey.
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$10,137 - $48,214
(Median)
$10K
$24K
$48K
MEDIAN: $24,286
10%
50%
90%

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$2.17 - $10.41
(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
$10,137 - $48,214  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $473.44  
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).
)
$9,668 - $37,277  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 47
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 - $10.41  
   
Hourly Tips
$1.51 - $16.81  
Overtime
$1.41 - $17.54  
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 - $473.44  
   
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).
)
$9,668 - $37,277  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 362

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United States (change)


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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.


For Food Servers, experience does not seem to be a major factor in determining pay. 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. After working for 10 to 20 years, Food Servers make a median salary of $23K. In the end, the overall pattern seems to be that more experience generally corresponds to higher pay; a Food Server with more than 20 years of experience can earn $25K on average.

United States (change)

Experience Affects Food Server Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 22%

Experienced
up arrow 12%

Mid-Career
up arrow 10%

National Average
$20,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 4%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 97 votes.

Gender

Female
63 %
Male
37 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
7%
1-4 years
44%
5-9 years
29%
10-19 years
11%
20 years or more
8%

Common Health Benefits

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