Julian Niccolini is the co-owner of the Four Seasons restaurant in New York City, and he's been in the restaurant business since 1977. His advice for getting a prime table? Make and confirm your reservation with a human being. This allows you to confirm your seating preferences—you want a table where other people aren’t going to hear your conversation—and make sure the restaurant has the name of your guest, too. That helps things go smoothly.
Whoever makes the reservation usually pays the check. When you're going to a very important meeting with a person you've never met, make sure the restaurant has your credit card number ahead of time, Niccolini says.
If you're the host, show up early to make sure you have the table you want. If not, ask to change it. Managers, hosts, and servers are there to make your visit enjoyable.
Make one restaurant your place. If you fly United Airlines all the time, they upgrade you. If you're a regular at a restaurant, you can expect better treatment. We will remember what you like and dislike, Niccolini says.