Nonrestaurant Food Server  What They Do

Just the Facts


Serves food to individuals outside of a restaurant environment, such as in hotel rooms, hospital rooms, residential care facilities, or cars.

This career is part of the Hospitality and Tourism cluster Restaurants and Food/Beverage Services pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Examines trays to ensure that they contain required items.
  • Places food servings on plates or trays according to orders or instructions.
  • Monitors food distribution, ensuring that meals are delivered to the correct recipients and that guidelines, such as those for special diets, are followed.
  • Loads trays with accessories such as eating utensils, napkins, or condiments.
  • Cleans or sterilizes dishes, kitchen utensils, equipment, or facilities.
  • Monitors food preparation or serving techniques to ensure that proper procedures are followed.
  • Takes food orders and relays orders to kitchens or serving counters so they can be filled.
  • Carries food, silverware, or linen on trays or uses carts to carry trays.
  • Determines where patients or patrons would like to eat their meals and helps them get situated.
  • Prepares food items, such as sandwiches, salads, soups, or beverages.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 10 lbs., sometimes up to 20 lbs. You might do a lot of walking or standing, or you might sit but use your arms and legs to control machines, equipment or tools.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposed to disease and infections more than once a month through work such as patient care, laboratory work, and sanitation control
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation requires being inside most of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person

Work Hours and Travel

  • Rotating shift work
  • Weekend work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Diet Aide --
  • Dietary Aide --
  • Dietary Assistant --
  • Dietary Service Aide --
  • Food Service Assistant --
  • Food Service Worker --
  • Room Server --
  • Room Service Server --
  • Server --
  • Tray Server --