These food service nightmares include all sorts of terrible servers, bartenders, and even managers! Just reading about these horrible customer experiences is frustrating.
“I Had To Argue With The Manager To Actually Get The Pizza I Ordered”
“Last year myself, my wife and some family went out to pizza in Salem, MA. We all ordered and then they deliver them to our table. Everyone’s pizzas came except my wife’s and mine. We’re waiting for like 10 minutes until we notice people after us were getting food. Finally, I go up there and they get all defensive and say they delivered it.
‘No, you didn’t.’
Finally, they fess up that another customer had raised his hand and taken our pizza. They then just sat there looking at me like ‘OH WELL, LOL.’
I had to argue with the manager to actually get the pizza I ordered. She tried to make us take other pizzas instead that were already made (and not what we ordered).
The place lost my business for life.”
“I Thought My Mother Was Going To Have A Heart Attack”
“I was at a local restaurant with my 9-year sober mother. She often has urges to drink, but she resists because the past was so terrible. I go ahead and order a water and she orders a plain club soda. The waitress then puts brings her a mixed drink made with club soda, but my mother didn’t know and took a sip. I thought she was going to have a heart attack.
My mom simply explained that she just wanted a plain club soda and the person tried to argue with her that that isn’t what she asked for. I stood up and told her that she was a depressed drinker for 20 years and is now sober and you gave her a drink now in full rage mode.
Her response? ‘Shouldn’t have drank to start out with.’ She also charged us for both the club soda and the mixed drink.”
“Pizza Place Thought We Were Pranksters”
“I have a friend who has a wheat-allergy so we asked a local Pizza Hut if they had wheat-free pizza and they said they did. Unfortunately, another friend of mine also was lactose intolerant and couldn’t have cheese.
So we ordered a wheat-free pizza and a no cheese pizza but they must have thought we were pranksters so the pizza guy came to our door with two boxes of tomato sauce with toppings on it and expected us to pay!”
“The Server Returned To Call Us Out For Not Tipping Enough”
“I went to eat at a pretty well-known restaurant chain with my wife (then girlfriend) and her friends for her birthday. We made a reservation but when we arrived were told that it would be a 45-minute wait until our table was ready. We decided to have some drinks at the bar and wait for the table. When we were seated (8 of us in total), they put us at a booth and pulled up two chairs to the outside corners of the table (we were starting to get upset). Our food took an hour and a half to come out and we were only served 2 drinks despite asking the server for more (now we’re fully upset).
The already crowded table was never cleaned and the server was, for lack of a better word, unfriendly. One of the members of our party worked at a sister restaurant and was entitled to a 10% reduced price for the table (excluding drinks). When the server brought us the bill he mentioned that we should tip on the original amount and not the discounted price. I thought it was strange he would make that comment but we tipped what we thought he deserved for his service, about 10-15% from each member of the party. This is where it gets good.
He took the checks and went to process the payment but returned shortly after to call us out for not tipping enough. He went through each bill individually and told us what 15-20% would be for each bill and singled out one member who tipped 10% (now we’re fuming). We told him that we would not be adding any additional amount and he should feel lucky we didn’t ask for the original tip to be returned. The manager saw this happen and asked to speak to us, during which the server stood behind the manager and called us liars. The manager apologized and told the employee to go to the back and he would meet him there shortly. I heard from another source that the server was no longer with the restaurant.”
Messing With People’s Allergies Is A Serious Deal
“My wife’s worst experience ever. A tiny bit of background: my wife, who at the time was not just lactose intolerant but was getting earth shattering cramps, horrendous smelling diarrhea and feeling like she was on fire reactions if she ate even a little bit of any kind of dairy (later we found out this was caused by a faulty gallbladder that has since evicted).
She went to a McDonald’s right across the street from her terrible retail job and ordered a McDouble with no cheese like she did about 3 times a week because it was cheap and close and she had very short lunch breaks at said terrible retail job. Well, she gets back to her work and noticed ‘hey there is cheese on this.’ So she has to go all the way back over there and asks to have it replaced.
The manager comes over and asks what’s wrong. When she said she ordered it without cheese and they put cheese on it he responded with a flippant ‘so?’ Now this manager was not some ‘just out of high school kid,’ he had to be in his 30’s, so you would think somewhere along the lines he had grown up, but I guess not. She explains to him she is allergic to cheese and needs one without cheese. So he hands the sandwich back to the grill area and they scrape the cheese off, rewrap it and try to give it back to her.
She watches them do this so trying to be as polite as possible, she explains she cannot eat a sandwich that has had melted cheese scraped off of it BECAUSE SHE IS FREAKING ALLERGIC YOU STUPID WASTE OF HUMAN FLESH.
So he huffs, gives her more attitude, rolls his eyes, angrily throws the sandwich away and asks the grill to make a new one. She gets it, asks him if he is sure it doesn’t have cheese on it, he says yes and she leaves without checking it. She gets back to work, opens up the bag and guess what she finds on her freaking sandwich? TWO slices of cheese.
So she gets permission from her boss since now she has already burned like 35 minutes to get a stupid sandwich from across the street when she normally only gets a 30-minute break, walks back over there and the manager sees her coming and asks her ‘Now what?’
My wife asked to speak to a different manager and he didn’t give her any attitude, apologized, personally made her a new one, opened it in front of her to verify there was no cheese on it and refunded her meal as well. My wife of course got both managers names and their store number.
We then proceeded to report the entire story to McDonald’s corporate with a glowing review for the manager who handled it correctly and a very condemning retelling of the awful service the first manager gave her. We got some gift cards from corporate and the owner of that particular franchise verified the story with the second manager and the first manager’s employment was terminated.”
“We Watched The Chef Take Off His Gloves And…”
“I was shocked how little these people cared about the food they served and the attitudes of the staff at the restaurant.
I went out with my girlfriend’s family for lunch to a little restaurant nearby. We asked for a table, they led us to it and as we were sitting down this woman came over with cutlery for us. We were all trying to squeeze into our seats when the woman with the cutlery blurts out ‘I’m trying to lay the cutlery!’ No please or thank you, she just demanded that we move. That was the first ‘off’ thing to happen.
The restaurant had a kitchen that was open so that you could see all the food being prepared as you waited. As our food is about done, the chef (for reasons I cannot think of) takes off the gloves that he is wearing and sticks his hands into my girlfriend’s mom’s dish. He then proceeds to hand the dish to the waitress and it comes over to the table.
We’re all looking at each other like ‘did that just happen?’ and my girlfriend’s mom questions the waitress about the chef placing his hands in the food. Bear in mind that the waitress was looking directly at the chef as he did it. She claimed that the chef had his gloves on the entire time, and even when three or four of us stated that we had seen it happen, she still refused to come clean.
At this point my girlfriend’s mom was furious. The waitress put the plate down in front of her, and my girlfriend’s mom asked if she could have a new one instead. The waitress took the plate without a word and rushed back to the kitchen. No sorry or anything.
We watched the waitress start talking to the chefs. They all huddled together and started to look at us occasionally as if we had done something really wrong. It unnerved us and we couldn’t eat without feeling like we were being watched for the rest of the meal.
Eventually, my girlfriend’s mom’s ‘new’ dish arrived. The waitress left, and my girlfriend’s mom told everyone that she had been watching the kitchen staff and all they did was put her old dish under the heater and pretend to make a new one. She ate a bit of the dish but in the end, she was put off of her food because she was so angry.
To top it off, after our meal we called the manager over to our table to explain why we were making a complaint. The guy sat with us and didn’t seem to be taking any of it in. He had a blank look on his face and was just repeatedly saying ‘yeah’ as we were explaining. After we’d told him what had happened, he said that he would deduct my girlfriend’s mom’s meal from the bill and that was it. He didn’t say anything about talking to his staff or making sure that the food was actually clean before serving.
Honestly, it seemed like the whole restaurant staff didn’t care. This is a nice restaurant too, so I really didn’t expect people to behave like this there.”
“Both Had A Bite Taken Out Of Them”
My friend and I order burgers at Wendy’s and both had a bite taken out of them. When we asked them to make new ones, they closed the window and laughed while ignoring us. We called their customer service line and were basically told ‘tough.'”
The Waiter Was More Interested In The Game Than Doing His Job
“We had a fairly inattentive waiter one night while out to dinner but I thought ‘Eh, no biggie, it’s late – he probably has worked a double.’ So I wasn’t too peeved since I had been in food service before, and I knew how tiring a long shift could be, and he also seemed to have the only tables in the whole restaurant.
Fast forward about 30 minutes and all of our drinks are empty, our food hasn’t come and we are getting fairly antsy to be able to eat and leave. I look over the little railing to the bar area and see our waiter standing under the TV watching a game that was on. I wasn’t going to say anything because the TV was also near the entrance to the kitchen so I was hoping he was about to get our food. NOPE. Our waiter stood there for a good 15 minutes before I see him walk into the kitchen and from where I am sitting I can see him put in our food orders. Mind you we had given him our food orders about 45 minutes prior!
At this point, I am pretty peeved and when the waiter comes over to us he says, ‘I’m sorry for the wait the kitchen is short staffed it shouldn’t be long’ and doesn’t offer to fill our drinks or see if we need anything, and just walks off. I was trying to not make a big deal out of it because I didn’t want our food messed with. So finally our food comes after I saw our waiter in the bar area again standing under the TV for about another 10 minutes watching the game. I asked for a manager at this point since we had our food and told him everything.
The manager says he’s sorry for the wait and gives us some insincere line of the kitchen was busy yadda yadda (at this point it is our table and about 3 other tables in the whole restaurant and the people who came in after us had gotten their food and were leaving). I asked the manager to bring the kitchen staff out if possible, I wanted to thank them for the well-cooked meal because the food was good. So the manager brings the cook and waiter out, and in front of the waiter I handed the cook a $20, thanked him for his service, looked at the manager, told him either he comps the bill or I’m not paying, and then told the waiter if he hadn’t been so interested in the game on TV that I saw him watch for nearly 30 minutes BEFORE putting our food order in I might have tipped him.
Everyone was stunned at what I did, and I just smiled and walked out. The next day I called the GM of the restaurant and told them the whole story and we were given a few free meals and assured the waiter was no longer there after his treatment of us.”
“She Tells Me It Looks Okay To Her”
“To start off, I am a server. I can usually tolerate a lot of awful service, usually giving the benefit of the doubt.
There was a pizza joint I liked to frequent. One day, a friend and I went in and ordered something called ‘Nutty Bread.’ It’s basically gooey Nutella cooked into a folded over pizza dough. We waited and waited for it, I flag down the waitress and she goes looking for it. She comes striding back with it, drops it on the table without a word, and disappears. We look down to basically this burnt piece of folded up dough with burnt Nutella inside.
I try flagging her down, she avoids eye contact. FINALLY, I get her to come over. I tell her it’s way overcooked and inedible. She picks up my fork and starts poking at it, telling me it looks okay to her. Here is how the conversation went:
Me: ‘I’ve had this plenty of times before. Usually, it’s nice and soft and gooey, this is just overcooked and inedible.’
Her: ‘Hmmm, yeah. Well like, the only way I can see it is: It can’t be super awesome every time because then your expectations will be too high the next time you order it!’
I burst out laughing. I thought she was joking. I even had her repeat herself, which she did – followed up with ‘Did you want me to pack it up for you?’
I did. And I am actually pretty good friends with the owner of that place so I swung by their house to show and tell them about my experience. The scream of ‘She said WHAT?’ still resonates with me to this day. Let’s just say she didn’t have a job by the next day.”
Delivering Food On Roller Skates Can Cause Some Issues
“I went to Sonic for lunch one day, and my boss asked me to get her a route 44 blue coconut slush. The girl that brought the stuff to my car was on roller skates. She hit a rock, and the giant cup of blue came flying into my open window. She laughed her butt off and apologized while I got out to let it drip off of me instead of even more getting onto the tan interior of my new car. She left, came back with a wad of napkins and a handful of ’10 cents off’ cardboard circles and tossed them in my car.
As I was trying to wrap my brain around what was happening, my friend called me and said her baby had just been born prematurely and she wanted me to go straight to the hospital. I got there and stopped in a bathroom to try to scrub blue dye off of my arms, face, and neck. I wasn’t very successful, but my friend and her husband had a good laugh after a stressful day, so that was a plus.
When I got home, my husband saw that the inside of my car had been dyed blue and had a layer of sugary crust. He strongly suggested that I call the manager and ask if they would have my car cleaned. I called, and the manager told me to go see him the next day. When I showed up, he said he could have one of his employees vacuum out my car, and handed me a card with ‘half off drinks for life’ scribbled on it. I chalked it all up to ‘Sonic sucks,’ and planned to let everyone I knew use that card for the rest of my life.
First trip there, my husband handed the drive-thru guy the card, and he confiscated it and said it was only good for that one time. At that point, I was pretty angry. I emailed corporate, the owner of that Sonic called me pretty quickly and claimed that it was his ‘idiot son’ who gave me the card and that there is no such thing as a lifetime discount. I told him I didn’t care about a discount and that I just wanted them to clean my car. I ended up with 10 free combo meals and a car interior that still attracts more dirt in certain spots no matter how much I clean it.”
She Heard Her Waiter Snickering About Her
“I lived in Paris for a year, I worked there and spoke fluent French with a good Parisian accent. I didn’t look American, but sometimes I read the New York Times in English. Anyway, I worked near a particular café – it looked nice, simple and not too busy; perfect for me. So I decided I wanted an espresso while I read my newspaper before heading to work one morning.
I sat down (normal convention in France, you sit yourself down wherever you want) out front, the waiter came out, I made eye contact.
Then he walked back inside. I sat there for a few minutes, going about my business. He back came out, I looked up, he walked away.
He spent a good half-hour avoiding me. Finally, after hearing him snickering in the back about (in French obviously) ‘the stupid American’ and saying things that he assumed I couldn’t understand, he came out again. I cleared my throat quite loudly, exclaimed ‘garçon!’ (taboo to call a waiter this, it’s an insult) and told him that I wanted a café (espresso).
He gave me a look of disgust and came back, slamming the espresso on the table. He dropped the bill on the table and stomped away as I exclaimed (in complete Parisian accent French and again, quite loudly to make him feel insulted) ‘Thank you, and thank you for your magnificent service. You are quite the good server, garçon.’
Then I pulled the $1 USD bill out of my wallet that I kept for homesickness, put it on the bill plate, downed my café and walked out.”
That Cashier Was NOT Having A Good Day
“I went to a cheap pizza place called ‘Citypie’ on the Upper West Side with a friend.
And my god, their complete lack of customer service is absolutely astonishing. So we wanted four slices of pepperoni pizza. There was a combo meal ‘Four slices of pepperoni and two fountain drinks.’ I’m not a soda drinker, so I kindly asked the man ‘Can I substitute the fountain drink for a bottle of water instead?’
‘Absolutely NOT. The combo REQUIRES a fountain drink ONLY,’ the cashier sharply replied. We decided to forego the combo meal and just order four pepperoni slices instead.
Shortly after that, I went back to the cashier to order the two bottled waters. I didn’t have any cash on me, so I pulled out my debit card. My debit card is quite old and the edges are a bit frayed, so it usually takes credit card machines a couple of tries to register my order.
I hand my debit card to the cashier. He looks at the card, looks at me, and starts chuckling.
‘You’re really ordering bottled water with a credit card?’
I was stunned. ‘Ummm… yes?’
‘You know, you really should carry some cash on you for situations like this.’
As expected, the cashier has a bit of trouble with my card. The first time he swipes it, it doesn’t work.
‘OH MY GOD. IT DOESN’T WORK,’ he loudly complains. ‘You know, you really need to get a new card. I mean, what kind of person orders bottled water with a credit card?’
Flabbergasted, I just stood there and nodded as he ran the card a couple more times. On the third try it worked and I walked back to my seat with the water bottles.
And that was just the beginning.
So we ordered four slices of pepperoni pizza. They gave us four slices of cheese, then started arguing with us when we informed them of the mistake.
When we FINALLY got our slices of pepperoni pizza, we had to bat back the flies that were buzzing around the horrid, terribly dated decor. I made a joke to my friend about the sign displayed prominently on the back wall of the pizza place. It was a very silly logo that spelled ‘CITYPIE’ in generic Impact font and a tomato-ish background.
‘I bet he paid $500 for that silly logo I could create in Microsoft Paint in 2 minutes,’ I said to my friend, jokingly.
All of a sudden, the cashier WALKS OVER TO OUR TABLE.
‘You know, I designed that logo myself. It’s been the logo of this institution for ten years.’
The awkward silence that followed was unbearable. Needless to say, the moment we finished our pizza we bolted right out of there as fast as possible.
Never, EVER go to Citypie on the Upper West Side.”
Dad Didn’t Mess Around With The Rude, Prejudiced Attendant
“On a long road trip Mom badly needed to pee, so Dad pulled into a gas station and Mom ran inside asking where the restroom was. The attendant told her ‘around back’ so Mom hot-footed it outside and to the back of the store, only to find the door padlocked.
A little ticked off that he didn’t say something before, Mom went back inside and asked for the key. The attendant told her ‘We can only give the restroom key to store customers.’ Aching at this point, Mom ran out to the car and told Dad the situation, he was already pumping some gas and when he was done he paid with a credit card at the pump. ‘There, now you’re a customer.’
Mom ran back inside and asked the attendant for the key. ‘I’m sorry Ma’am, but that man outside paid for the gas, you didn’t. Maybe you could buy some tacos? Or burritos? Habla Ingles?’ (My mom is part Native American but the guy was mistaking her for Hispanic).
Mom is not a confrontational person. She went back to the car and tearfully told Dad she could hold it. Dad asked why she still hadn’t gone to the bathroom and raged when he heard what the attendant had said.
Dad was 6’9, heavily tattooed, and weighed 400 pounds. The attendant meekly handed over the restroom key. Meanwhile, Dad bought a Big Gulp (actually, I don’t think he ever paid for it) and downed it in 3 sips while glaring at the attendant.
When Mom came out of the restroom, Dad told her to sit in the driver’s seat and keep the car running. They pulled up to the front door of the gas station and Dad stepped outside, unzipped his pants and peed all over the glass and floormat.
Dad loved telling that story. Mom, not so much.”
“The Burger Guy Starts Running His Mouth”
“Went to a Burger King my friends and I frequented, like twice a week we’d get lunch from there (we were 21 and perpetually hungover).
My buddy orders his Whopper with something minor, like no onions, add barbecue sauce. He gets it and it’s a Whopper Junior, so we check receipt and he paid for a Whopper. He goes to get it fixed, they remake it, hand it to him and it’s just a regular Whopper. He goes back again, ‘Hey, it’s the right burger, but it’s got onions and no BBQ sauce.’ He gets it fixed again, opens up the third one and it’s plain with nothing but lots of onions and BBQ sauce, literally piled high with onions and drenched in BBQ sauce. He’s getting frustrated but trying not to take it out on the poor girl at the register. The burger guy now starts running his mouth from behind the hot lamps saying he’s made it as asked every time, just being a rude loser. Cue my buddy throwing his burger at the guy, drilling him in its over-saturated glory right in the guy’s face. The manager finally comes out of hiding and ends up banning my buddy and firing the burger cook. My buddy refuses to leave until he gets his money or correct order back.
All the while, our other buddy and I are eating and watching the best live theater during dinner we had seen in ages.
In the end, he got his money back, we left and took him to McDonald’s.
A week later that Burger King burnt down. Two months later it was rebuilt. A month after that, burnt down again.”
How Hard Is It To Get A Cup Of Coffee, Black?
“On my way to work, trying to buy a coffee to go.
‘One coffee, please.’
The guy hands me a cup of coffee that already has milk in it.
‘Uh, sorry, but I drink my coffee black.’
‘How the heck am I supposed to know that if you don’t tell me! What do I do with this coffee now? Everyone drinks their coffee with milk and sugar! Just tell me what you want next time! I’m not a mind reader!’
He disappears grumbling into the back of his shop on his quest for black coffee, returns with it after a few minutes.
Me, awkwardly trying to make conversation while I fumble for money, ‘Well, that’s unusual that you already put milk and sugar…’
‘What do you effing mean you want milk and sugar? Are you making fun of me? Do you think that’s funny? What do you want? Get out of here, I’m not selling you anything, I don’t want you here!’
The only time I’ve ever been thrown out of a shop.”
“The Bartender Demanded $100 For My ID Back”
“I went to a bar after a college football game with some friends. I’m 21, but I don’t drink too often, so I offered to be the designated driver for the night. So we show up to the bar, we get in, we are having a good time just hanging around and singing karaoke, and then I go up to the bar asking just for a Diet Coke. The bartender pours my drink and then turns around and asks for my ID. I thought it was strange, but I handed him the same ID I gave the bouncer and he immediately tells me to leave (with my ID in his hand). I told him I was the DD and he just yelled at me (so the whole bar could hear), ‘This is a fake ID and if you don’t leave voluntarily, then I will make sure you leave.’ I have terrible anxiety and decided to go, leaving my ID there because the bartender demanded $100 for my ID back.
Of course, a cop was waiting right outside the bar where I parked and pulled me over since he saw me just walk out. I told the cop that the bartender took my real ID but I gave him my name, social and a government identification from my job. The cop could tell I was sober and my government ID is a lot more legit than a license, so he ran my name and it came back I was 21. The cop marched into the bar and demanded my ID was relinquished immediately, much to the bartender’s surprise. One of my friends caught him on camera saying I needed to pay him for my ‘fake ID,’ and told the police officer and showed the video. The bartender was immediately arrested on the spot.
So having a terrible bartender led to his arrest. And now that he doesn’t work there I don’t get carded there anymore.”
“She Came Over While We Were Barely Finished With Our Food And…”
“My friends and I went to IHOP every Sunday night for the past two semesters to play Cards Against Humanity. We are normally there for a couple of hours and order things the whole time, tip well and are friendly to management and the wait staff. One week, we have a new waitress and an otherwise empty restaurant. She did not refill our drinks all night and didn’t remove anything from the table until we asked her to. Fine, she’s new. But then she came over, while we were not even close to finishing our game and barely finished our food, to ask if we could leave so another large group could take our tables – In an empty freaking restaurant. We said we’d be finished soon and she sort of huffed and said she was leaving in five minutes so we had to go anyway.
You never, ever, EVER, ask a table of well-behaved diners to leave their table, and it is not their problem if your shift is ending. I’d have been fired on the spot when I waited for treating customers like that. We packed up our stuff and left and never went back.”
The Bartender Didn’t Want To Make His Drink
“My friends and I were at the local bar (or grille, because it was fancy) when one of my friends ordered a fairly common mixed drink. During our meal, the waitress came back and asked if we wanted another round of drinks (the rest of us had whatever was on tap). When all of us answered yes she said, ‘Well, except for you’ and pointed to my friend who had ordered the mixed drink. It came off really awkward so we kind of laughed it off, then kept staring at her, waiting for another response. She stood there.
My friend: ‘Oh wait, really? Is something wrong?’
Her: ‘The bartender told me to tell you he won’t make another one. He doesn’t like making them.’
I glance over at the bar and there’s this big oaf, leaning over the counter and looking at us. I chimed in.
Me:’ Tell him he’s at work, this isn’t a favor any of us are asking him.’
No dice. She insisted that she wouldn’t ask him and he wouldn’t make another one. It makes absolutely no sense. I thought maybe she would sort of stick up for us and be like, ‘Yeah, he’s a loser, I don’t know why he won’t’ or something, but no, just wouldn’t make it. We all walked out.”
Ordering Personalized M&Ms Seem Like More Trouble Than They’re Worth
“A couple of Christmases ago, I ordered those personalized M&Ms with photos on them. Shortly after ordering, I received an email saying there was a problem with my order – the photo I wanted to use had too many faces in it so I needed to call X customer service number.
So I called, and I waited.
1 hour and 52 minutes later, a woman told me I could just reply to that email with a picture with only 1-2 faces in it. JEEZ, THEY COULDN’T HAVE SAID THAT IN THE EMAIL?!
So I replied with the new picture, no problem. SIX DAYS later I get an automated voicemail message saying there was a problem with my M&M order, and please call this number. So I called AND I WAITED TWO AND A HALF HOURS for them to tell me there was no problem at all and my order had been shipped.”