5 Places Bacteria Love to Hide in Restaurants

5 Places Bacteria Love to Hide in Restaurants

Make Sure You Clean These Germiest Places in Restaurants

Whether as a restaurant proprietor or customer, you need to keep an eye out for these 5 germiest places in restaurants, and up your sanitation levels for them!

Keyword(s): germiest places in restaurants


A million deaths a year could be prevented by routine handwashing. Meaning, it's not as prevalent as it could be. Unfortunately, not everyone takes hand washing seriously, even in the restaurant industry.

In today's world, keeping yourself safe from germs is an important part of everyday life.

Whether you're a restaurant proprietor or customer, you need to keep an eye out for these 5 germiest places in restaurants. So you can improve your sanitation and overall health!

1. Menus

From the moment you step into a restaurant and are handed a menu, you're coming in contact with multiple forms of bacteria. Although restaurants are making more of an effort to sanitize everything, including menus, there's always a chance something was missed.

Menus pass between many hands in a short amount of time. This means anyone can pass along germs. Your best bet is to wash your hands after you are seated and have ordered your meal. 

2. Rims of Glasses

You may think some other bacteria hiding spots may be more prone to germs, however, rims of beverage glasses are one of the top contenders. That's because some waiters will hold the glasses by the rims rather than at the base.

Because this is where we then sip from, it gives bacteria and viruses a direct route into our bodies. 

It is the duty of a commercial kitchen to prevent cross-contamination. This is prevented using a plan based on the Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point principles (HAACP).

3. Tables & Chairs

In today's world, we can only hope that restaurants are being more cautious with wiping down the tabletops. However, these tend to be restaurant bacterial breeding grounds.

Some studies suggested that this could be because parents will sometimes use restaurant tables as changing stations for babies. But there could be other causes as well.

The same goes for chairs. These are laden with multiple types of bacteria that could cause some serious illness including E. coli. Most restaurants aren't sanitizing chairs regularly or at all.

You might want to bring your own disinfectant wipes with you when you dine out!

4. Salt & Pepper Shakers

You may have already suspected that the salt & pepper shakers that are usually left on the table, are not often washed. That means if the customers dining at your table previously didn't wash their hands, then you're going to pick up their bacteria the next time you spice up your meal.

5. Lemon Wedges

It's gross to think about but lemon wedges have often been found to contain fecal matter. You may wonder how that's possible. The truth is many servers are grabbing lemon wedges with their bare hands and not using gloves or tongs.

If your server hasn't washed their hands after using the restroom, then that bacteria is going right on your lemon wedge. You might want to skip this garnish on your next drink!

What to Do About the Germiest Places in Restaurants

Now that you know how bacteria spreads and creates the germiest places in restaurants, you may be wondering what you should do. You want to protect yourself from germs while still being able to enjoy your meal.

Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly and keep your hand sanitizer close. You also don't want to grab the restroom door handle on your way out. If you can, use a paper towel or your foot to open it.

We hope these tips will help you stay safe and healthy on your next restaurant visit! If you are a restaurant owner, be sure to keep these areas extra clean!

Looking for more ways to keep clean? Check out our blog for professional guidance.


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