I'm having a few problems with the correct things to say when eating in a Japanese restaurant.
Should I say something when I enter the restaurant? Should I greet the staff? When they ask me how many people I have with me (do they say 'ni nin sama?'? I could never really understand that?) how should I reply?
To ask for a menu, my source listed the phrase 'menu wo kudasai'. However, to me, this sounds very much like 'Please give me the menu', and feels slightly impolite. I'm much more of a 'May I please see the menu?' person. Is there a more polite phrase I could use?
Also, when ordering, how do I say "Can I have this, this and this, please?" And also, how can I say "Can you please serve it without this?"
What do I say when the waitress brings me what I asked for? And is it weird, or recommended, to say 'Gochisousama deshita' to the staff as you leave the restaurant/pay?
I hope you can help me, I'd really like to order in Japanese, but until I feel I'm polite enough, I just don't have the confidence.