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Restaurants who will do separate bills for large groups (25-40 people) ???

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Minskore Feb 14, 2011 07:53 AM

Anyone know of restaurants in the Toronto area that will do separate bills for groups of 25-40 people? I plan dining out events for a social club on a monthly basis and have a lot of trouble finding restaurants that are willing to do separate bills. It would be a nightmare for me to try to calculate what each person owes (been there, tried that). And members don't like pre set menu's. Anyone have any suggestions ? We're ok with them adding the gratituity to each person's bill automatically.

I don't know why restaurants make it so difficult on patrons, you'd think they'd go the extra mile to get that kind of business, but they don't...I guess the restaurant business is so lucrative these days that they have no issue turning away business.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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  1. pinstripeprincess RE: Minskore Feb 14, 2011 08:14 AM

    because it's a nightmare and difficult on the servers/restaurant?

    why can't your individual dining club members calculate their own totals? or divvy up into smaller groups of say 4 to make it more manageable.

    if it was a group of 8, i could understand your issue... but with that many people the amount of time it takes to input/track/write down all the info and do all the calculations/print-outs/get change/wait for the cc machine to respond... would be dreadful. you and they would be spending a solid half hour doing it.

    5 Replies
    1. re: pinstripeprincess
      TorontoJo RE: pinstripeprincess Feb 14, 2011 08:27 AM

      For 40 people, you're talking more than an hour just to run the credit/debit card machine for each person.

      1. re: TorontoJo
        pinstripeprincess RE: TorontoJo Feb 14, 2011 08:34 AM

        i was being generous and hoping that there would be a fair number of people who brought cash in such a situation and so they could get/calculate change while waiting for the machine to ring everyone else through.

        back to the OP... "that kind of business" is not generally known to be desirable unless they can finangle you into a set menu or charge for the renting of the room or the restaurant seats at least 3x the group size. large groups take up a lot of time without eating much more and potentially less than smaller groups and make it very difficult for the kitchen to produce dishes all at the same time.

        1. re: pinstripeprincess
          TorontoJo RE: pinstripeprincess Feb 14, 2011 08:53 AM

          Yeah, I actually should have replied to the OP, not you. :)

      2. re: pinstripeprincess
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        Minskore RE: pinstripeprincess Feb 14, 2011 08:33 AM

        I understand it requires effort on the part of the restaurant......but really it comes down to customer service.....I'm in business and I bend over backwards to please and accomodate my clients, regardless of how much effort it takes.

        1. re: Minskore
          pinstripeprincess RE: Minskore Feb 14, 2011 08:39 AM

          but do you handle 40 clients individually all at the same time? it's not about customer service, it's about what is actually feasible given time and costs involved. there are only so many hours in the day, so many cc/debit machines available, so many people on staff.... i don't disagree with what szw is suggesting, negotiating is a very good route to go, but everyone has a limit on their resources.

      3. s
        szw RE: Minskore Feb 14, 2011 08:28 AM

        I'm curious, what kind of social club is this? Never belonged to anything like that so just curious.

        As for why they don't do it, it is very difficult to organize. If I were you, when approaching a restaurant, I would try offering them an extra charge of say $30 or $40 charge specifically for extra bill service, as well as agreeing to a %15-%18 gratuity on the individual bills.

        With this, they could have an extra server on the floor just to take care of your bills without costing them. Make a deal with them and they may be more receptive. If you go into it with the attitude of "I guess the restaurant business is so lucrative these days that they have no issue turning away business." then I can easily see the issue people have and why they would turn down your request.

        1. The Chowhound Team RE: Minskore Feb 14, 2011 09:19 AM

          Folks, if you have a restaurant to suggest for Minskore, please go ahead and do so. Whether or not her request is reasonable isn't really on topic for the Ontario board. If you'd like to continue that discussion, please start a new thread on Not About Food and post a link here.

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