Waiters and Service in Korea - 49
When I talk about Korea being a land of extremes, the service industry is a prime example. The ‘Service’ industry has already been discussed to an extent earlier, but there are other interesting points to be mentioned. Koreans tend to see their own country as a service orientated country and this could not be truer and it could not be further from the truth. Let us begin, by looking at the very positive aspects of the Korean service industry, in a country where food is a very important part of the culture.
There are two things in Korea that specifically impressed me with the service in restaurants and bars in Korea. Firstly, you can be anywhere in a restaurant and shout as loud as you want ‘Yogi yo’ which translates into English as ‘Here please’. It is perfectly acceptable in Korea to shout for the waiter/waitress to come to your table and it is something that you should not be embarrassed to do as a foreigner. Of course, if you are Korean, you should also be aware that shouting at the service staff when in other countries, is usually something you definitely should NOT consider doing.
In America, Italy or UK for example, you will probably attract evil stares by shouting out to the staff and at worst, you might find yourself hastily out on the street with a pile of sauce over the front of your shirt. The second great thing about service in Korea and which was briefly discussed earlier, are the buzzers. Yes buzzers. In a large number of restaurants and bars in Korea there is a buzzer on each table. Press this buzzer and within a minute or two a server will usually arrive at your table. The buzzer idea is a great idea.