Thursday, December 10, 2015

Dining out

It is interesting to watch the interaction of customers with restaurant staff.

Recently we were away on a Saturday evening and were going into a restaurant for dinner. We had made reservations and I am very glad that we did because the restaurant was full at 6 pm and there was a waiting list. When we approached the hostess there was a family looking for a table. The mother was with her two teenage boys and she was looking for a table. The manager nicely explained that there would be an approximately 15 minute wait for a table but she was more than welcome to sit in the waiting area until a table became available. The manager also explained that they could eat in the bar/lounge area of the restaurant if a table came available but couldn't sit at the bar as her boys were under 19 years of age. The mother didn't like having to wait for a table and her comment was “Get me a table as quickly as you can”. The manager nicely said “we will do our best” and that is all they can do when the entire restaurant is full.

During this same restaurant business there were people that wanted quick service and others (like us) that just understood that the servers were very busy and we may have to wait a coupe of minutes for attention. It is always interesting when you are out and you watch the interaction of customers with restaurant staff. Some people treat the server as a lower class but most people are very friendly and understanding when the server takes a couple of minutes to do something.

Eating out is something that we do as a treat now and most of the time we don't eat out on a Saturday night as it is just too busy out. We were eating out on a Saturday evening this time as we were away on vacation. Of course, being in Niagara Falls on a weekend is always busy especially when there are events going on. The only time Niagara Falls isn't extremely busy on a Saturday is in January and February when it is cold out and not many people want to be walking around.

When you go to a restaurant for a meal understand you are not the only customer looking for a seat or wanting service. If you are in a hurry, you need to ensure you are flexible with where you are going to have your meal. When we are in a hurry and are eating out we normally go to a fast food restaurant so that we don't have to worry about wait times.

If you are eating out on a Saturday evening remember there are going to be a lot of other people doing the same thing. If you want a seat, at a specific restaurant, at a specific time I would suggest that you make reservations so that you get that table. It is always interesting to see how busy some place is and how they try to ensure everyone is happy with their experience. To make the experience work both the customer and the server need to work together.

Eating out is always interesting and if you want to have some fun, just watch how other people interact with the servers. Also, remember that when you are eating out others are watching your interaction as well.

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