Check Splitting Etiquette: The Art of Painlessly Dividing the Bill #hackdining

Check Splitting EtiquetteDining out with a group of friends, going on a date, or having dinner with a few out-of-town relatives should be a joyful occasion. But these memorable meals can descend into a mess of confusion, disproportionate payouts, and hurt feelings when it comes time to split the check. Save the table that collective pain and be thoughtful to your server by following these seven tips for gracefully dividing the bill.

When Someone Treats

If one contingent of the party insists on paying for the meal either upfront or when the check is presented, it’s still good form to offer to cover the tip. Consider it a gesture of thanks and goodwill. The host may turn you down, but at least you’ve made the offer.

Advance Warning

Asking the server to split up the bill at the end of the meal is an inconsiderate, messy move. If you’d like separate checks, request them before anyone has ordered. It will still require the server to do more work, but it will make it easier for them to keep everyone’s various charges separate. Remember, many restaurants cap the maximum number of check splits and some won’t do separate checks at all. (They usually note this one the menu, but, if they don’t, you should ask about their policy at the start of the meal). Call ahead if you’re going to ask to split a check more than four ways to make sure they can accommodate your group.

Elect a Foreman

Someone needs to take control of divvying up the check. Allowing everyone to eyeball the receipt and guestimate what they owe often doesn’t end well. If people under pay and there’s still enough to cover the check, no one will fight to put more money in to ensure the server is tipped appropriately (FYI: if you have a large party that is taking up a lot of your server’s time, you should tip 20 percent or more). So nominate the math major in the party or take on the job yourself to ensure the check splitting goes as smoothly and speedily as possible.

Equality is Easy

The easiest way to split the check is to simply divide it evenly amongst the diners and agree on the percentage tip you’ll each leave. If you’re dining with a group of longtime friends who ate and drank approximately the same meal – everyone had two cocktails and shared a series of small plates – then this is an easy route.

Steak and Wine Vs. Salad and Water

Don’t split the bill equally if one dining companion pointedly ordered a side salad and water, while the rest of you split three bottles of wine and each ordered steaks. Your friend may be on a tight budget but still wanted to see you all, so don’t punish them for coming out. If you’re the diner with a limited budget, make sure you request a separate check at the beginning of the meal so you don’t need to explain your circumstances to the group.Continue Reading

OpenTable Tab Now Lets LA Diners Put It on Their Tab

OpenTable Tab

Dine like a regular and pay like a boss in Los Angeles with OpenTable Tab, a new payment experience that gives diners a way to quickly and easily settle a check at any time as well as providing restaurants with a unique way to deliver classic hospitality. Currently available at more than 75 restaurants in Los Angeles, OpenTable Tab will be introduced in more U.S. cities later this year.

To experience OpenTable Tab,  simply tap the Tab feature when you book your reservation at a participating restaurant. Once you’re at the restaurant and ready to leave – or at any time during their meal – you can let your server know you want to put your meal on your OpenTable Tab and then get up and go whenever you’re ready. When no cash or cards exchange hands at the table, you’re free to live in the moment.Continue Reading

OpenTable App Integrates with NCR Aloha Point-of-Sale Solution to Bring Mobile Payments to More Diners

We are pleased to join with NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR), the global leader in consumer transaction technologies in announcing that NCR has integrated OpenTable’s ‘Pay with OpenTable’ app with the industry-leading NCR Aloha point-of-sale solution via the NCR Hosted Application Protocol Interface (API) platform. What this means for diners is that NCR Hosted APIs help provide OpenTable app users with a secure, convenient payment option.

The NCR Hosted API Platform is a cloud-based gateway that allows third parties to integrate, maintain, and deploy their services across NCR’s installed base of POS systems. This cloud offering allows payments through the OpenTable app to be tightly integrated into the NCR Aloha point-of-sale solution.

To pay with OpenTable, diners who book at participating restaurants simply add a credit card in the OpenTable app before they dine and then view and pay their check on their smartphone. There’s no separate app to download; no codes to enter; and no scanning or barcodes involved. Diners who pay with OpenTable simply get up and go whenever they’re ready.

Pay with OpenTable New

“The integration with the NCR Aloha point-of-sale makes the OpenTable mobile payment experience even more widely available to our customers,” said our Chief Executive Officer Matt Roberts. “We’re excited about working together to power a payment and dining experience that is intuitive and elegant for both diners and restaurants.”Continue Reading

Pay with OpenTable Arrives on Android

Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of our Pay with OpenTable feature for Android. We’ve already seen how diners have benefited from our mobile payments functionality by using their iOS devices, and now we’re thrilled to offer a way for Android users to pay without the wait.

Our team has been working hard to make this new Android feature an intuitive and frictionless experience. To pay with OpenTable, diners simply book a table at a participating restaurant and add a credit card in their OpenTable Android app before they dine. Then they can view and pay their check with a few taps. There’s no separate app to download; no codes to enter; and no scanning or barcodes involved. Diners who pay with OpenTable simply get up and go whenever they’re ready. It’s that simple!

Pay for Android 3.24.2015

We’re so excited to welcome Android users to try our mobile payments feature and look forward to receiving your feedback. To learn more about OpenTable mobile payments, watch “Life’s too short to wait for the check” and visit http://pay.opentable.com/ to view the current list of participating restaurants. Restaurants who are interested in providing their guests with the experience of paying with OpenTable can learn more at http://pay.opentable.com/restaurants.

Aditya Singh is a senior product manager at OpenTable.