Should You Take Reservations In Your Restaurant on Thanksgiving?
As you set out to plan your restaurant’s Thanksgiving Dinner, there are quite a few things you have to decide. One of these is whether or not you want to take reservations for the day. For many businesses the answer will be simple, but for others it takes quite a bit of consideration. You have to look at a lot of factors to come up with a decision that works best for your business. There are several options that you have. You can choose to take reservations and walk-ins, take only reservations or take only walk-ins. The one you select will depend on several things.
Do You Typically Take Reservations
One consideration to make is whether or not you typically take reservations in your restaurant. If you usually ask for reservations then your customers will expect to have to make one. If you have never accepted reservations then it is likely that your customers will not expect to make one. This could mean that you would end up passing up your regulars. Instead, you can offer a combination of reservations and walk-ins. This way you could accommodate the customers that help drive your business, while accepting reservations from newer clientele.
You will also want to look at the seating capacity of your restaurant. If you can seat a lot of people, then reservations may not be necessary. If your capacity is limited, then reservations might be a good idea. It also helps you organize the seating better if you have reservations for at least part of your customers. You can determine where everyone will sit and you will know how much food you will need to prepare. As you go over your seating capacity, you should be able to determine whether or not reservations will benefit your restaurant.
The hours that you plan on being open will also have an effect on whether or not you should consider reservations. The more time that food will be served, the easier it will be for people to walk in and have a meal. If your hours will be limited then making sure that your customers make reservations will ensure that they will have a place to dine over Thanksgiving. You have to remember that this is a busy day and a lot of people want to dine out. If you want to take advantage of that then you will need to make your restaurant available to customers in a way that makes it easiest for them.
Large Group Accommodation
Finally, try and determine if you expect your restaurant to receive large groups. Very often large groups are difficult to seat quickly and would benefit from a reservation. If you decide to require reservations for large groups, then it will be much easier for you to accommodate everyone and ensure that everyone who wants to enjoy their Thanksgiving dinner at your restaurant, will enjoy themselves.
Customer Comes First
Choosing whether or not to take reservations is something that you have to decide based on your needs, your restaurant and what you prefer. But always consider your customers needs and expectations first and you will find that whatever you decide will work out.