Food Runner

Last Updated:
June 29, 2023

Job Description Overview

A Food Runner job description typically involves the timely delivery of food to customers in a restaurant or hotel. As a Food Runner, you are responsible for delivering orders from the kitchen to the customers' tables while ensuring accuracy and efficiency in a fast-paced environment. Your duties may include communicating with servers, kitchen staff, and management to ensure that food is prepared and delivered in a timely manner, and responding to customer requests for extra napkins, utensils, or condiments. In addition, you may be responsible for maintaining a clean and organized work environment in the kitchen and dining areas.

To excel in this role, you must be able to work well under pressure, be detail-oriented, and possess excellent communication and customer service skills. You should also be able to follow directions and work as part of a team. Food Runner job description requires you to be physically fit as the job may require standing for long periods and carrying heavy trays. Experience is not always necessary, as training is usually provided on the job.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Deliver food from the kitchen to the dining area or table
  • Ensure the accuracy of orders and that they match with customer requests
  • Monitor food quality and presentation before delivering to customers
  • Work closely with servers, kitchen staff and management to maintain timely service and good communication
  • Notify servers or management of any issues or concerns with orders, food quality, or customer satisfaction
  • Help with setting up and cleaning dining areas before or after service
  • Follow food safety guidelines and standards in handling, storing and transporting food
  • Provide friendly and professional service to customers and contribute to a positive dining experience
  • Assist in other tasks as needed, such as refilling drinks or resetting tables.

Experience and Education Requirements

To become a food runner in the hospitality industry, you usually need a high school diploma or equivalent. Experience working in a restaurant or hospitality environment is also preferred by most employers. Food runners need to have good communication skills and be able to multitask. They should be able to follow directions and have a basic understanding of food safety practices, including food handling and storage. Physical stamina is also important, as the job requires standing, walking, and carrying trays of food for extended periods. Training on the job is typically provided, but having a positive attitude and a willingness to learn is essential for success in this role.

Salary Range

Food Runner salary range in the hospitality industry can vary depending on location, experience, and the type of establishment. In the United States, the average hourly wage for a Food Runner is around $10.39, according to PayScale. However, this can range from $8.77 to $14.79 per hour.

In other countries, a Food Runner's salary range can differ. For example, in the United Kingdom, the average hourly wage is £7.60 per hour, as reported by Indeed. In Canada, the salary range is between C$20,000 to C$27,510 per year, according to Job Bank.

Ultimately, a Food Runner's salary will depend on several factors. However, in most cases, the hourly wage is reasonable, and the tips can also add to the overall income.


  • PayScale:
  • Indeed UK:
  • Job Bank Canada:

Career Outlook

As a food runner in the hospitality industry, the career outlook for the next 5 years looks promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of food runners and other food preparation workers is projected to grow by 11% from 2018 to 2028, faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is attributed to the increasing demand for dining out at restaurants, hotels, and other hospitality establishments.

The job of a food runner primarily involves bringing food from the kitchen to the dining area, ensuring that dishes are presented correctly and delivered hot and fresh to the customers. It may seem like a simple task, but it is an essential role that keeps the restaurant running smoothly.

With no specialized education or training required, becoming a food runner is an excellent entry-level position for someone interested in the hospitality industry. The salary for a food runner can vary depending on the establishment and location but usually ranges from minimum wage to around $15 an hour.

Overall, the demand for food runners is expected to grow due to the increasing demand for dining out. By delivering food quickly and accurately, food runners are an essential part of keeping customers happy and returning to the establishment. As such, the career outlook for food runners looks positive over the next 5 years.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What is a food runner?

A: A food runner is someone who brings food from the kitchen to the table.

Q: What are the duties of a food runner?

A: The duties of a food runner include delivering dishes to tables, assisting with food orders, and cleaning and setting up tables.

Q: What skills are needed to become a food runner?

A: The skills that are needed to become a food runner include strong communication skills, the ability to work in a fast-paced environment, attention to detail, and the ability to work well in a team.

Q: What qualifications are required to become a food runner?

A: There are no formal qualifications required to become a food runner, but experience in the hospitality industry is preferred.

Q: How much does a food runner make?

A: Food runners usually make minimum wage, plus tips. The amount of tips can vary depending on the restaurant and the location.

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