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  1. Wait to make order until all guests have arrived.
  2. If we were the guests, please let the host make order.  If the host invites us to make order, take care and do not order the most expensive dishes.
  3. Do not call the waiters or waitresses loudly.  Raise up our hands or wave to waiters or waitresses nearby.  Greet the waiters or waitresses first before making any order.  Do not make people feel that they are being commanded.  This crucial tip would keep a good atmosphere at the banquet.
  4. Understand the eating habits, likes and dislikes of all participants, especially their eating taboos as regards health considerations, religious factors, dieting customs of different places or official obligations prohibiting alcohol and lavish food and drinks etc.
  5. One hot dish could be ordered for each person during Chinese banquets.  For Western banquets, dishes aside from appetizers could be chosen according to  individuals’ likings but we should still consider the combination of the guests.  For example, more dishes could be ordered if there were more gentlemen, and less if there were more ladies.  Moreover, try to consume all noodles and rice in Chinese dishes . 
  6. It is best to have an appropriate combination of  cold and hot dishes.  If there were many gentlemen, there should be more meat.  If there were more ladies, lighter dishes would be more suitable.  The number of strong and light taste dishes should be balanced. 
  7. Local dishes would be recommended for foreigner guests, and these should suit their eating habits.  If there were no foreigner guests,  order and try the special dishes of the restaurant.
  8. Pay attention to whether the guests need special utensils such as forks or big bowls.  Make the request to the waiters or waitresses when ordering food to avoid their having to make extra turns.
  9. Inform other participants about the order.  “I have made orders.  Do they suit your taste?”  or ask:  “Do we need to order other dishes?” etc.  
  10. Also pay attention to the cooking methods of the dishes when ordering.  For health consideration, order less fried food and more boiled side dishes which use more fresh ingredients.
  11. Tips for ordering drinks:  Order soft drinks or juice for children.  For ordering wine, we could refer to the ‘Tips of Matching Wines from the Wine Tasting Profession’.  
  12. Order quickly and do not hesitate for a long time without making decisions.
Pay attention to the combination and sequence of  dishes  when making order for Chinese or Western banquets.
Chinese banquets

-          Cold dishes

-          Stir fries

-          Main dishes

-          Refreshment and soup

-          Fruit

Tips for making order:
  1. ž   Order seasonal food or those with blessing meanings for main dishes during special occasions. 
  2. ž   If there were cold dishes and elderly guests, do not put the cold dishes too near these guests.
  3. ž   If some guests are from northern China, some of the main dishes could be noodles, buns and dumplings.
  4. ž   Dishes are put in the centre of the table for sharing in Chinese banquets.  Choose appetizers and cold dishes according to the number of guests.
Western banquets
  1. Starters: appetizers which may be cold or hot with special tastes.  Mainly salty and sour, small in quantity but high in quality.
  2. Soup: four types including light, creamy, vegetable and cold soup.
  3. Side dishes: usually fish, shellfish, seafood, eggs, bread and pastry.
  4. Main courses: usually meat and poultries.
  5. Vegetables: come after dishes with meat.  Vegetables such as salad are sometimes served together with the meat.
  6. Dessert: come after main courses.
  7. Beverages: Tea or coffee.

Tips for making order:
  1. ž  Main courses should be decided first.  If fish is the main course, the appetizer could be meat, and other dishes could be decided to match the main course.
  2. Can do without dessert and soup if appetite is small.