How do you say in English, "to eat at a restaurant" or "to eat in a restaurant"?


Normally you would say:

eat at a restaurant.

This would imply that you went to the restaurant, were served food, and ate it. If you ate your own food (or food from another restaurant), you would have to explain that.

If you were to say:

eat in a restaurant

That would mean you ate food while inside the building.

While both could be used, at implies being a customer, whereas in simply indicates location.

  • Based on your answer, I’ve constructed the following simple sentence. ‘We are planning to eat at a Thai restaurant’. What kind of sentence can you make about ‘in the restaurant’? Whenever I think of something being ‘in the restaurant’, I’m always replacing it with ‘inside the restaurant’. Apr 11 '13 at 16:34

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.