- Research the eatery before you arrive. Some places don't take reservations, but they will let you call in advance and add your name to the list. If that's the case, call up to two hours before you want to eat and politely give the hostess your name.
- Go earlier or later. Show up at the restaurant about 15 minutes after it's opened; chances are they won't be full yet, and you'll be able to enjoy a meal without having to wait. The opposite option is to get there on the later side: after 9 p.m. You'll miss the dinner rush and hopefully be greeted with a shorter line.
- Be prepared to wait. Don't eat at a hot spot when you have a limited amount of time to dine. Got to be someplace after the meal (the theater, a party, a sporting event, etc.)? Then, select an eatery that can get you in and out quickly, not one that has a long wait.
To see the rest of my tips, keep reading.