I am staying at a hotel and they offered breakfast and dinner. The hotel specifies the time periods for breakfast and dinner time, like maybe 8 - 10 am for breakfast and 6 - 7pm for dinner. Like you cannot eat if you are past the time.

So I want to ask the front desk then about the time. How can I structure my sentence? Are these following good?

  1. What is the breakfast/dinner time?
  2. when can I expect to have breakfast/dinner?
  3. what's the schedule of breakfast/dinner like?

Should I like to ask if I need to reserve a time(or time slot)?

  • You can ask "What are the meal times?" but it's unclear what you want to ask, since you already know the meal times. You could ask "Do you take reservations?" or "Can I make a reservation for dinner?" but this seems unlikely since there is only one hour and I guess they are expecting to serve everybody at about the same time. Breakfast might be slightly looser, as it does not take two hours to eat breakfast. Apr 9, 2019 at 17:55

3 Answers 3


Polite ways to inquire might be:

When is breakfast/dinner served?
What are the hours for dinner and breakfast?
When are meals served?

or, being specific:

From when to when is breakfast/dinner served?

You can be even more polite by phrasing your question thus:

Could you kindly tell me when meals are served?
Would you kindly inform us when we have to be down for meals?

From your three suggestions, I would choose the first. The second sounds rather pushy - a bit abrupt. And the third is badly constructed, although you might ask: What's the schedule for breakfast/dinner?

  • Hi, thank you for your reply. Do I need to put the in the sentence When is breakfast/dinner served? , like When is the breakfast/dinner served??
    – Joji
    Apr 9, 2019 at 18:59
  • Yes,...just :**when is breakfast (dinner) served**, meaning from what time will it be ready. Apr 9, 2019 at 19:01
  • sorry I am kind of confused here. I thought When is the breakfast/dinner served? is just more grammatical since we need the to refer to that specific dinner or breakfast. Or you think it is already implied during the conversation so we don't need an explicit the?
    – Joji
    Apr 9, 2019 at 19:04
  • You're referring to the hotel's general schedule, not a special event of breakfast, so "the" breakfast doesn't really apply. Generally, even when referring to a specific instance of breakfast we don't use "the"--I had cereal for breakfast this morning. "When is your dining room open for breakfast/dinner?" would also be an appropriate way to ask the question.
    – Katy
    Apr 9, 2019 at 20:46

All of your suggestions would be understood by an English-speaker even if they aren't 100% correct but if you want to use a more "idiomatic" form of English I would suggest asking:

  • What time do you serve (or just "do" rather than "serve") breakfast and dinner?
  • When (or "what time") is breakfast/dinner available please?

Whether you need to reserve a time - that depends on the specific hotel so I can't answer that generically, but you could ask:

  • Do I need to book [breakfast/dinner] in advance or can I just show up? (But if you already asked about meal times, the front desk person would probably tell you if you need to make an advance reservation.)
  • 1
    thank you. I know that my suggestions would be understood by anyone but I want to improve my English as much as possible so I was looking for a more natural and idiomatic form.
    – Joji
    Apr 9, 2019 at 19:25

breakfast/dinner schedule generally means what you cook each day. It (breakfast/dinner schedule) can also mean * 30 minutes to eat, followed by a break and so on....*
So it is not a good choice

What is breakfast/dinner schedule?

The following sentence--

When can I expect to have breakfast/dinner?

This conveys a very humble sense.

What is the breakfast/dinner time.

Is the best choice.

  • so you meant What is breakfast/dinner schedule? can be understood as what food would be served as the breakfast or dinner so it is not a good choice?
    – Joji
    Apr 9, 2019 at 18:57
  • Yes that is the reason.. Apr 9, 2019 at 18:58
  • @Joji I've never heard "breakfast schedule" or "dinner schedule" used to mean what food would be served--that would be a "menu." At least in the US, if you asked about a breakfast/dinner schedule, you would be understood to be asking about time.
    – Katy
    Apr 10, 2019 at 6:39

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