If You’re At A Restaurant And You Forgot Your Wallet, It Might Be Alright To Leave Without Paying

Flickr / Martin Abegglen
Flickr / Martin Abegglen

Producer’s note: Someone on Quora asked: What should I do if I eat at a restaurant and then realize I forgot my wallet? Here is one of the best answers that’s been pulled from the thread.

This happens much more frequently than you might think. Diners either forget or “forget” their wallets and we have to accommodate somehow. In general this comes down to a number of factors:

  • does your waiter have the impression that you really forgot your wallet and aren’t just
  • trying to skip on a meal
  • does your waiter like you
  • does your waiter’s manager like the waiter
  • does the manager have a good day
  • and does the manager like you

If all these point to “yes” then we’ll generally just let you skip. The sale is marked as pending in our POS and if you come back to pay it’s credited towards the old sale. Don’t forget, in those cases, to tip the waiter well.

If you don’t show we have a number of ways to deal with this. We can either claim it on the loss insurance (which covers dine-and-dash situations as well as CC fraud and cancelled orders), we can write it off, or we can try to find you. The latter is quite a hassle so it happens only if one of the waiters remembers you.

The thing is, most waiters work in more than one place. Almost all cooks do. Dine-and-dash or skipping on a meal always comes back to bite the diner in the butt. Skip a meal at my place and go have McDonalds the next day and you’ll realize that my line cook is also a day manager there. And she will remember you because the second something like this happens the waiter will inform us and we’ll have a peek.

If you have anything identifying on you, like a cell phone show it to us, give us your number, and we’ll let you leave. You’ll be back. Most dashers make this mistake and claim they left their wallet while having their phone on the table. The manager will ask for your cell# and call it. It’s not that we’re generally distrustful people (we are, but that’s beside the point) but we’ve been skipped a few times in our career and know how to suss the skippers out.

We’re in the business of making you happy and making money. And we’ll relentlessly pursue both. So just tell us and we’ll work something out. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

This answer originally appeared at Quora: The best answer to any question. Ask a question, get a great answer. Learn from experts and get insider knowledge.x

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