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[Drinking] Reserving Tables in Pubs for drinking



Herr Tubthumper

Well-known member
NSC Patron
Jul 11, 2003
60,941
The Fatherland
I stopped going to Brewdog due to their excessive reservations policy. Huge groups of tech types booking loads of tables, bar is empty but there’s no where to sit. Last straw was when I went on a Tuesday for a quick pint and although half the bar was empty there was nowhere free.

I guess it makes sense for events like the Euros, but not everyday of the year.
 




phoenix

Well-known member
May 18, 2009
2,733
Are you one of those who holds out a crisp £20 note to get the bar staff’s attention?
Used to always give the girl a drink behind the bar when we went out clubbing she would spot you knee deep in bodies and say what can i get you Darling. Then a bloke said to her "I was in front of him" she said to him "piss off ugly" :eek::D She was a real charmer.
 






Anger

Well-known member
Jul 21, 2017
327
I'm watching the England game at home tonight but I've nipped in the pub for a quick pint whilst my lad goes to football training. I'm quite frankly staggered at the amount of tables reserved for people to sit at for the football and I really dont get it.

- First come first served is surely fairest. Mikey 9 fingers might sit there with a pint of mild most Wednesdays but it isn't most Wednesdays today.
- Reserving tables encourages the reserver to come later thus reducing revenue. Why encourage that?
- Having your favourite table is all a bit league of gentlemen for me.

Is it just me that thinks this type of behaviour is worse than the Rwanda bill, Crystal Palace and Fred West combined or is it me that's not living in the 90s anymore and poor old Mike and his dog that shits itself regularly should have it's reserved seat?

Open to the floor

Definitely not worse than Crystal Palace. Few things are.
 




Jul 2, 2011
78
We’ve stumbled upon a few places in the past only to be told its reservations only, even with many a table not being used. I always argue that your mad for turning away customers… even potential repeat customers.

We just never go back.
 


chickens

Have you considered masterly inactivity?
NSC Patron
Oct 12, 2022
2,235
I absolutely hate this. A pub should be distinct from a restaurant, you do not reserve tables at a pub.

Unfortunately as most pubs have had to pivot (sorry) away from alcohol sales, certain tricks of the restaurant industry have crept in. A place where you reserve a table should be a restaurant, a place you walk into ad-hoc a pub.

It’s particularly galling when you’re travelling and stop at a place where the sign claims it’s a pub or inn, but when you walk through the door you’re told they’re fully booked until 9:30pm.

The whole point of an inn is that it’s for those travelling to stop at, if you’ve turned into a restaurant full of empty tables with reserved signs on them, you’re a restaurant and need to stop masquerading as something you’re not.
 


HeaviestTed

I’m eating
NSC Patron
Mar 23, 2023
1,711
I’ve booked a seat at the Amex for me and the boy for the season, is that worse?
 




Seagull58

In the Algarve
Jan 31, 2012
7,712
Vilamoura, Portugal
My local takes table reservation for special events, so this evening we reserved a table from 7pm. Lots of reserved tables but one was still empty at 8:30. The barman confirmed they came in at 6:30 to reserve a table but didn't turn up. We have agreed with the staff that they are now banned (probably here on holiday) and if they turn up again they will be informed of their egregious behaviour. The table is now populated by walk-ins.
 
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BrightonCottager

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2013
2,382
Brighton
A busy pub that I frequent introduced table bookings in that period of covid when you could go to the pub but not approach the bar. They've continued and we have a regular table early evening on a busy night at the same time every week in a Last of the Summer Wine stylee. However, we always get there on time and leave about 2 hours later. Occasionally we get moved if the pub has a more lucrative restaurant booking. I don't get the impression that other punters or the pub are upset with the arrangement as we drink our own body weight in beer and get the bar staff drinks as well, including rounds of Tuaca if there's something to celebrate.
 


portlock seagull

Why? Why us?
Jul 28, 2003
17,498
I absolutely hate this. A pub should be distinct from a restaurant, you do not reserve tables at a pub.

Unfortunately as most pubs have had to pivot (sorry) away from alcohol sales, certain tricks of the restaurant industry have crept in. A place where you reserve a table should be a restaurant, a place you walk into ad-hoc a pub.

It’s particularly galling when you’re travelling and stop at a place where the sign claims it’s a pub or inn, but when you walk through the door you’re told they’re fully booked until 9:30pm.

The whole point of an inn is that it’s for those travelling to stop at, if you’ve turned into a restaurant full of empty tables with reserved signs on them, you’re a restaurant and need to stop masquerading as something you’re not.
This. And so few have stables too these days for my company horse.
 






Hotchilidog

Well-known member
Jan 24, 2009
8,914
I'm watching the England game at home tonight but I've nipped in the pub for a quick pint whilst my lad goes to football training. I'm quite frankly staggered at the amount of tables reserved for people to sit at for the football and I really dont get it.

- First come first served is surely fairest. Mikey 9 fingers might sit there with a pint of mild most Wednesdays but it isn't most Wednesdays today.
- Reserving tables encourages the reserver to come later thus reducing revenue. Why encourage that?
- Having your favourite table is all a bit league of gentlemen for me.

Is it just me that thinks this type of behaviour is worse than the Rwanda bill, Crystal Palace and Fred West combined or is it me that's not living in the 90s anymore and poor old Mike and his dog that shits itself regularly should have it's reserved seat?

Open to the floor
It's not just you. I flipping HATE it.
 


Nobby Cybergoat

Well-known member
Jul 19, 2021
7,619
I hate this as well.

As I've got no idea why pubs would allow it.

Say I want to watch the euro final in a pub and want to get a table, if there's no reservations i'd have to get a seat, by about 2pm. Meaning a table that may otherwise be empty is going to be occupied all day.

People who have reservations generally rock in at about 5 mins before kick off
 




S.T.U cgull

Well-known member
Jan 17, 2009
452
HILLLLLLL
I hate this as well.

As I've got no idea why pubs would allow it.

Say I want to watch the euro final in a pub and want to get a table, if there's no reservations i'd have to get a seat, by about 2pm. Meaning a table that may otherwise be empty is going to be occupied all day.

People who have reservations generally rock in at about 5 mins before kick off
Had this issue on Saturday

Rocked up @ Exchange in Hove about 2pm - one table indoors occupied - every other table reserved from 4.30… outdoors unreserved - full by 3pm indoors like the marie celeste until 4.25..!
 


Oh_aye

Well-known member
Jul 8, 2022
1,724
I'm watching the England game at home tonight but I've nipped in the pub for a quick pint whilst my lad goes to football training. I'm quite frankly staggered at the amount of tables reserved for people to sit at for the football and I really dont get it.

- First come first served is surely fairest. Mikey 9 fingers might sit there with a pint of mild most Wednesdays but it isn't most Wednesdays today.
- Reserving tables encourages the reserver to come later thus reducing revenue. Why encourage that?
- Having your favourite table is all a bit league of gentlemen for me.

Is it just me that thinks this type of behaviour is worse than the Rwanda bill, Crystal Palace and Fred West combined or is it me that's not living in the 90s anymore and poor old Mike and his dog that shits itself regularly should have it's reserved seat?

Open to the floor
I just vote with my feet. Unless it's a restaurantey pub- dominated by food, I just won't use a pub that routinely let their tables get reservedfkr drinkers. The number of places I go in in Brighton where you can't really stay, in a virtually empty pub because Hugo and Tabitha may possibly deign us with their presence in half an hour, does my nut in.

Pubs are free to act how they want but this isn't my preference for how a pub works.
 


essbee1

Well-known member
Jun 25, 2014
4,388
We always book a table if we can and make sure that we are there
at least an hour before KO and yesterday it was 1.5 hours before KO.

We could have got a table without booking that early - but if you're meeting friends - then standing for
3 hours ain't much fun and is a pain - so you want to be sure you get a seat. Don't see the problem
with that tbh.
 


heathgate

Well-known member
NSC Patron
Apr 13, 2015
3,678
Got a touch of the towels on sun-loungers about it.
A bit more than a touch..... it irritates me intensely.... We have more than once accidentally 'lost' a reserved sign on tables in normal pubs.....pleading ignorance when the reserves turn up sometime later.... in a meal focused venue fair enough, but not just in a boozer.
 




Yes Chef

Well-known member
Apr 11, 2016
1,862
In the kitchen
I'd say that it's not particularly uncommon (we do it at our pub) and wonder if any of the complainants on this thread haven't benefited from a booked table in the past.

If someone wants to celebrate an occasion in a specific pub then surely it's just prudent for them (and the bar staff) to be organised? Rather then traipsing around hoping to find somewhere with space for lots of people.

No shows (be it food or drinks) are selfish morons of course.

Me and a mate have a table booked in our local for Sunday night's game. We probably wouldn't have bothered but at last night's game, lots of newcomers had commandeered the seats and we had to watch on the downstairs telly which had a 45 second time lag. Even worse, they were drinking bottles of lager in a local brewery tap 🙃
 


heathgate

Well-known member
NSC Patron
Apr 13, 2015
3,678
I just vote with my feet. Unless it's a restaurantey pub- dominated by food, I just won't use a pub that routinely let their tables get reservedfkr drinkers. The number of places I go in in Brighton where you can't really stay, in a virtually empty pub because Hugo and Tabitha may possibly deign us with their presence in half an hour, does my nut in.

Pubs are free to act how they want but this isn't my preference for how a pub works.
Yup, I vote with my disposable income.... there are plenty of other joints to spend it in.
 


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