Patrons Check Selves Out at Legal Sea Foods
It’s happened to anyone who has gone to restaurant. You finish your meal, hand over the plastic to the waiter/waitress, wait and begin to get fidgety as you wonder what could possibly be taking so long to pay for your meal and go.
Legal Sea Foods believes it may have the answer to this problem and it basically comes down to letting its patrons take care of the check without them or their credit card ever having to leave the table. The answer is a hand-held payment device at the side of each table.
Many like what they see as a security advantage in using the tableside payment devices. Because consumers never need to hand over their credit card, the perception is identity theft is much less likely.
“When we rolled it out, some people were offended by it or intimidated,” Roger Berkowitz, Legal Sea Food’s chief executive, told The Boston Globe. “People are there to relax and have a good time so there is a little bit of a fine line. But given the furor over credit-card protection, we’re definitely starting to see more people wanting to experiment with it.”
A poll run by The Globe in connection with the story asked readers: “Would you feel more comfortable if a credit card transaction took place at your restaurant’s table?”
With 843 counts voted as of this writing, roughly 84 percent of respondents answered they were comfortable with paying at the table as a precaution against possible identity theft. The balance didn’t like the idea, saying it would ruin the ambience of the restaurant experience.
Legal Sea Foods will offer the hand-held tableside devices at all of its 34 restaurants.
Discussion Questions: Will the perceived security of the tableside payment devices increase the likelihood that consumers will choose Legal Sea Foods over other seafood restaurants without a similar payment option? Do you think the devices will become widespread in the restaurant business?