Empty Restaurant YET No Availability

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January 14, 2015 by Diniquette

Ok, so this is a huge issue with a lot of restaurant Guests; so let me break it down for you:

*Here’s the scenario: you walk into a restaurant, without a reservation, and ask if there are any openings.  You look around and see that the restaurant is empty, so you feel your chances are excellent.  The Host/Maitre’D then informs you that there are no available tables….what happens next?  YOU LOSE YOUR MIND!

*Before you need to be sedated, let me tell you why this happens:  even though the tables are empty NOW, they are reserved, an should be full, within the hour.  Reservations are honored before walk-ins….that’s just a fact and it’s fair.  No restaurant wants to say NO to you; and no restaurant wants to turn away business; that being said: if you had to wait for your reservation because the restaurant “squeezed” in a walk-in, at your allotted table, you would not be happy.

*Here’s the flip side:  I have worked in restaurants where the walk-in table is told:”we are glad to seat you, however, we need to inform you that there is a reservation, for that table, in 1 hour”.  If you agree to the 1 hour time frame then you better be finished in 1 hour. DO NOT take advantage of the kindness of the restaurant. If you lie and say you’ll be gone in 1 hour and decide you’ll stay as long as you like, you are now compromising the next Guests experience, who rightfully has that table, plus placing the Bar, Kitchen and Server all behind schedule which can cause such a domino effect that it’s like entering Dante’s 5th circle of hell; (for those of you checking: the 5th circle is Wrath…seems appropriate, no?).

So, the next time you walk-in to an empty restaurant without a reservation, and are told there are no openings: now you know why.

Thanks for reading.


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