Dining area vs. cafeteria

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Senior Member
Chinese - Hong Kong
In a US college, if there is an area with some tables and chairs in it but no any shops. Some students and teachers sit there to drink coffee or eat their lunch. Should I call it "dining area" or "cafeteria"? Thank you.
  • dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    It's the same in AE: a cafeteria sells food, though in a different way than a store or restaurant.

    So this would be a "dining area" or "snack area" or "break room" or "lounge".


    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    If it's intended use is for dining I might call it a dining area. But if people just happen to use it for that because they want to, I might call it a patio, seating area, terrace, or whatever best describes it.
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