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Would you welcome a policy in which your restaurant bill was adjusted according to your children's behavior?

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Restaurant Gives Parents Discount for 'Well-Behaved Kids' & Sets Dangerous Precedent

Posted by Julie Ryan Evans on February 4, 2013 

restaurant receiptAs any parent knows, eating out in a restaurant with children can be a bit of a dicey game. Sometimes your kids are angels, and other times you just want to crawl under the table ... if it wasn't such a horrific mess from all the food they'd thrown down there. But what if your bill depended on how well-behaved your children were?

A Reddit user recently posted a picture of a receipt from an Italian restaurant in Washington named Sogno Di Vino with a title "If only all restaurants did this for people with kids ..." On it there was a $4 discount for "well-behaved kids". A sweet gesture, and I bet those parents were pretty proud.

But the whole thing makes me kind of nervous.

Can you imagine if you were charged more for those times when your children aren't quite so good (as plenty of commenters suggested should be standard)? Or if the next time you didn't get a discount?

More from The Stir: Rude Waiter Calls Customers ‘Fat Girls’ on Restaurant Bill but It Gets Worse

Eating out with children is already filled with plenty of pressure for parents. Every raised voice, every dropped spoon can make a mom feel like all eyes in the joint are searing into her. And yes, sometimes children are out of control and should be removed from a restaurant. No one deserves for their meal to be interrupted by kids gone wild, but there also needs to be a certain amount of tolerance for families dining out without parents feeling like they're being judged even more. Most children just aren't going to be seen and not heard, and as long as mom and dad are making sure they're not heard too loudly, they deserve a little bit of a break. Having a random waitress decide what "well-behaved" is could be all sorts of problematic. I also can't imagine that restaurants really want to get into a battle over the bill with "those" parents who always deny their precious little ones ever do anything wrong.

Would it be nice to be rewarded when the planets align and you all make it through dinner delightfully? Absolutely. But I'm not sure it's worth the price you'd pay for the days when your kids act more ... like kids.

Would you welcome a policy in which your restaurant bill was adjusted according to your children's behavior?

by on Feb. 6, 2013 at 3:28 PM
Replies (51-51):
nickellmomof2
by on Feb. 7, 2013 at 12:21 PM

No, I don't like that policy.  It's not fair.  If you have a high class restraunt and don't want kids there, than say so.  Some place like Applebees, I go there expecting a family friendly environment.  When I go out and take my kids (7, 2.5, and 19months) I go someplace family friendly.  And going to a place that welcomes people of all ages at a restraunt, you should expect kids when you go there, and know that all kids aren't well behaved.  Going to a family friendly restraunt, you risk having the toddler behind you that keeps turning around and peeking into your booth.

My kids are mostly behaved, but they are young and can be loud and messy.  But I don't want some server (who doesn't know my kids) judging my kids' loudness and messiness as good/ bad behavior.  If a server decided my kids weren't behaved because they were laughing loudly and didn't give me the discount, even though laughter isn't misbehaving, I'd be upset.  Their job is to bring me my food that I'm paying for, not worry about whether or not my kids behave themselves.

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