Buffet Dining Etiquette: When May I Begin to Eat?

When food is served buffet style and you have a seated place setting, you may begin to eat when at least half of the number of guests seated at your table have returned from the buffet.  It is not necessary to wait until everyone seated at the table has returned.

If 8 guests are seated at the table, you may begin to eat when at least 4 guests have returned from the buffet.

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