|Le Crillon, Dec. 2013. We are so fancy.|
I love travel, loyalty programs and I love eating. These are the three truths. I also love to plan. I would have made a terrible hostel goer or backpacker back in the day. I am not a seat of the pants traveller either, I like to have a decent idea of where I'm going and what I'm going to see.
I also hate waiting in lines, all of them.
I'm a big fan of online reservation systems that ensure that I don't have to wait in line for food, museum exhibitions and ticket machines that only take exact change. For dining, I use OpenTable as much as possible to make restaurant bookings. I have even been known to fire up the app on the way to a restaurant just to ensure I'm not going to be hanging out in the parking lot with one of those ugly pagers.
Restaurants sometimes run promotions through OpenTable to get people to dine during off hours. Typically a diner earns 100 points for booking through OpenTable, but sometimes that bumps up to 1000 points. Points start to add up fast when you book them at these odd hours and for those who love their points, it can mean convincing your loved one eating dinner at 545 is really a very late lunch.
What does this have to do with the Single Payer System? Most of these promos require a party of two to get the 1000 points. The solo traveller is just as likely to eat either earlier or late, but they don't qualify for the promotion. Shouldn't we be getting at least 500 points?
I know that the restaurants pay to be part of the OpenTable program and it costs them x number of dollars to give out these points, but who is to say the solo traveller is not going to order a more expensive entree, a better glass of wine and perhaps linger over a cappuccino before heading back to their room to watch Dog the Bounty Hunter?
The same thing goes for restaurants that will not book tables for one. I use the French and UK equivalents of OpenTable to book restaurants and often times they will not take a solo diner. I end up booking for two and bring my bear to lunch (Kidding, sort of) . Instead I'll sheepishly say that my companion was not going to make it and hope they don't put me next to the bussing station.
I think it is time for the single payer/diner to be recognized. We can easily just order room service and sit in our pjs, but we choose to adventure out and try the newest kombucha on tap hotspot, so rejoice and give us our damn points for trying.