Getting a reservation for dining in Boise can be a big deal. It is someone’s chance to have a great night out at an upscale restaurant with friends and/or loved ones, for a date night, a birthday, or just a night where you don’t feel like cooking.

However, if something comes up, some diners may not remember to or care about canceling the reservation if no fee or deposit is attached. 

If you don’t own or manage a restaurant, you may not understand the impact of restaurant no-shows, especially on independently owned restaurants like Richard’s. 

Lost Revenue

The most significant impact no-shows can have on a restaurant is lost revenue from that table for the night. This is especially true when someone no-shows during peak dining hours.

You must consider how long a restaurant will honor a reservation if you run late. —it can be up to 30 minutes. With a no-show, that is 30 minutes that they could have used that table. And there are no guarantees of somebody taking your place. Canceling, even on the same day, gives restaurants more time to rebook the table without waiting 20-30 minutes for you to show up. Plus it’s the right thing to do—your mom would agree!

Reservation systems, like OpenTable used by Richard’s, track no-shows. They have a “three strikes/ you’re out” policy which means three no-shows and you aren’t allowed to book a reservation at that restaurant anymore. And most restaurants keep notes about diners, including when they’ve been no-shows. So don’t get on any restaurant’s naughty list!

Many restaurants, including Richard’s, require a credit card to hold tables for large parties and for holidays. We do this because a 10-top that doesn’t show up creates a huge disruption: moving tables back, hoping for walk-ins to fill that big void, lost revenue. Many restaurants will charge $20 a diner for no-shows for large parties or holidays which doesn’t make up for lost revenue but merely serves as a deterrent. 

Impact on Staff

Another aspect to consider is how no-shows impact restaurant employees. Most restaurants staff the restaurant based on the number of reservations made that night. 

So some employees may lose significant income for the night because you did not show up for their reservation. 

The server will lose out on a decent tip because they have one less table to serve for an hour or two. Extra kitchen staff may have been called into work because an owner thought more people would be dining on that night. They could even be sent home early, losing their income for the night.

If this happens too frequently, employees become disgruntled and, owners risk losing these valuable staff members. Any business is only as good as the people they hire. Even the best GM needs a team of employees to keep a restaurant running at peak efficiency.

Enjoy Dining in Boise

When it comes to dining in Boise, make sure you show up for any restaurant reservation that you make, regardless of which restaurant you plan to visit. That restaurant, large or small, is counting on your business. If your plans change, please call and cancel—even on the day of—that’s much better than being a no-show!