Dining Customs in Barbados

Food tasting is one of the essential parts of traveling; visiting a country is not complete without having a bite of the local food. Each country has different food to offer from the bizarre like eating live small octopuses to good old fillet Mignon. The Caribbean islands have a wide range of food and drinks. Barbados is one of the islands that have rich vegetation and abundant fresh sea food. If you want to have a bite of Bajan culture refrain from ordering food in your apartment hotel, Barbados have many local restaurants which have their own unique specialty which you must try. Work up an appetite because you will have a lot of food to taste in this tropical country but first thing’s first, you need to learn about a few customs while dining in this Caribbean isle.

Basic Customs
Travelers have to keep in mind that dining in Bajan restaurants is a relatively conservative affair. If you happen to be coming from a beach and plan to dine at a respectable sit-down restaurant, you better have a set of clothes to cover up. Shorts and bathing suits are never appropriate in these dining establishments. Some of these bistros have a general dress code tourists need to follow. Some Bistros and cafe require male guests to wear jacket and tie.

To avoid the embarrassment, inquire first about the dress code before making reservations. Bajans value eating experience and travelers should keep in mind that it is common for Bajan restaurants to withhold the check until it is requested. They believe that diners should feel relaxed, at ease and unhurried during their meals.

Paying for the Bill
When dining in restaurants do not rely so much on one credit card, bring an extra credit card and some restaurants only accept major credit cards. To be safe, have a couple of US dollars on your pocket. A customary 15 percent value added tax is included in the bill; this tax applies to all meals prepared on island. Some restaurants also have 10 percent service charge which functions a gratuity. You don’t have to tip if such a charge is included in your bill.

Reservations
Winter is when the country receives the most number of vacationers and during this peak winter season, bistros, cafes and other diners are very busy. If you plan to eat at a certain bistro, book a table in advance. Travelers staying in a fancy hotel can ask for concierge on staff to make reservations for them. But making reservations to restaurants is not that difficult you can simply fax a reservation request before you leave your home.

Breakfast
Visitors should keep in mind that most cafes and bistros on the island do not serve breakfast and those who do usually opens around 9 in the morning. Hotels on the other hand offer buffet breakfast.

These are few of the customs travelers should take note of during their stay in this Caribbean country. The island is rich with many gourmet and exotic food for tourists to enjoy, so don’t settle for the food served in your apartment hotel, Barbados has a lot more food options each tourist should taste.

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