Should Texas Restaurants Take Reservations?
Some local restaurants in Texas have decided that it would be easier to keep their restaurant dining rooms closed. Opting to continue doing delivery, take-out, or curb-side delivery. All of which I think is very prudent, as they are just now getting widespread testing in some areas. Governor Abbot did say that they 'could' open, and no one is forced.
I thought that taking reservations would help with the 25% occupancy rules. It would be easy to start since most people are calling in their order anyway, they could offer to take reservations while they have them on the phone.
Social Distancing is really no different than exclusivity. Fine Eateries take reservations for many reasons. Usually to avoid a popular restaurant being over crowded, with lines around the building. The same issue that reopening at a lower capacity could cause for restaurants here in Texas.
To maintain a social distance inside the restaurant, they can only seat so many people and still stay within the occupancy guidelines. Outside is a different story. Customers coming in could have to pass a long line of people. Plus inside, you can't really wear a mask to eat.
Taking reservations could also make eating out more of a planned occasion. Though making a reservation at a local drive-in restaurant might seem strange, it could also lead to better service and better tips for the waitstaff. Someone willing to take the time to make a reservation, might also even tip more.
During this quarantine, we have taken a bit of time to smell the roses. I think the dining experience has a window of opportunity be elevated, instead of 'just another night out'. The next time I eat out I will want it to be special, and reservations might just be the way.