Popular Hudson Valley Restaurant No Longer Makes You Wait for Check
A local restaurant has come up with a way to avoid that awkward wait at the end of dinner.
Restaurants have been struggling to find a compromise between maintaining good customer service and implementing money-saving technology that streamlines the dining experience. Some lower-priced family restaurants in the Hudson Valley have experimented with touchscreens and interactive menus. While this may work for burgers and fries, customers of more upscale restaurants still prefer to interact with an actual waiter.
Having a server explain options and suggest specials is an important part of the dining experience. An experienced waiter or waitress can also add to a meal's enjoyment by properly timing out courses and being quick to replenish drinks and check in with any other needs.
But when you're done with dinner, having to wait to pay your check can be downright painful.
No matter how attentive the server, it seems as though they can never process your credit card fast enough. Sitting with coats on and leftovers in hand, diners are held hostage staring at one another until the credit card is picked up. Then the wait for the card's return begins. Sometimes it can take what seems like an eternity.
Many times this isn't necessarily the fault of the server, but our own genetic need to get up from the table and run to the car the minute our last bite of dinner has been eaten.
On a recent trip to Bonefish Grill in Poughkeepsie, I was intrigued to discover that they have come up with a unique solution to this problem. When presented with my check after dinner, I noticed a message that invited me to download their app and pay for dinner with my phone instead of waiting for the server.
After a quick click, I entered the code from the receipt into the app and immediately my bill appeared. The program also allowed me to add a tip by percentage, eliminating the need for math. After entering my credit card info (which can be stored in the app for future use) I clicked "pay" and was done. The whole process took less time than it usually does for the server to retrieve my card.
I will admit that it felt a little strange just getting up and walking out of the restaurant. I was waiting for an angry server to run after us, accusing me of dining and dashing. My paranoia even forced me to make sure that proof of payment was still displayed on my phone as I walked to the car, just in case the police showed up.
But, of course, there was no problem and the whole experience was completely painless. My meal was even automatically added to the restaurant's loyal customer program. I can earn points and discounts with each visit and, here's the best part, discretely use those discounts when paying on the app. I have been known to throw away coupons just to avoid that embarrassing moment of presenting the server with a wrinkled up piece of paper and look like some sort of cheapskate while treating friends and family to dinner.
So before you dine out in the Hudson Valley, be sure to check to see if the restaurant you're visiting has an app that lets you pay your check from the table. It's certainly worth trying out.
We want to know what you think. Have you used an app for any Hudson Valley restaurants that you found helpful? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.