How to: shoot the north­ern lights, and more

The tricks to get­ting a meal in the world’s most pop­u­lar restau­rants, even when they’re fully booked

Lonely Planet (UK) - - Contents -

1 Don’t take no for an an­swer

No -shows hap­pen even at the coolest place in town, so call­ing on the day or turn­ing up and ask­ing isn’t a lost cause. To show you’re se­ri­ous, tell them you’re pre­pared to wait.

2 Sit at the bar

Ask if there are com­mu­nal ta­bles or spare seats at the bar, rather than a proper ta­ble for two or four. Many restau­rants are in­creas­ing ca­pac­ity in less for­mal spa­ces, as solo din­ing and more re­laxed meals grow in pop­u­lar­ity.

3 Dress up

If you’re be­ing spon­ta­neous, make sure you look the part. Some­one who is smartly dressed stands a bet­ter chance of be­ing squeezed in at a soughtafter lo­ca­tion than some­one in shorts and train­ers.

4 Try un­usual times of day

A ver y early or late sit­ting, even break­fast, can be an eas­ier time to score a ta­ble. If you’re jet­lagged, this might be a time that suits you bet­ter any­way. Take note of lo­cal peak-time din­ing pe­ri­ods, which var y countr y to countr y.

5 Ask a lo­cal for help

Ask a ho­tel concierge if they can swing some­thing for you. Their lo­cal knowl­edge and con­tacts may open some­thing up. If they do, make sure you tip them.

Find more ad­vice in Lonely Planet’s Best Ever Travel Tips, out now in a fully re­vised and up­dated edi­tion (£5.99; shop.lone­ly­planet.com).

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