If that is the full and true story the guy offered collateral of some sort, and would go accompanied to get the cash, then the restaurant are a bunch of hard asses. No wonder less and less people want to visit the USA these days. Its OK, many people don’t want foreigners visiting, but it just means less revenue for everybody stateside, particularly the tourism industry. I swear sometimes it might be renamed the United States of Overreaction (I feel this just about every time I hear the Marine Corps-type yelling of TSA at common citizens). I’d never eat at such a restaurant. A working phone is no small thing to leave behind.
I agree with you completely. The article implied the man was a regular at this restaurant when he came to NYC. Don’t you think the staff would have recognized that fact and allowed him to get the money? I don’t think this man was intending to stiff the restaurant on the bill. Of course he should have brought his wallet but this was a huge overreaction by this restaurant I believe.
First of all I would have guessed he was Sicilian. But...
It says he was a regular. They wouldn't let him go get his wallet, even after he offered collateral and to be accompanied?
In the middle of the dinner shift, I am supposed to tell a paid employee to abandon his work station to accompany a deadbeat on a wild goose chase?
Give me a break.
And what am I going to do with someone else's phone as collateral? Sell it on the black market? Go to the service provider and explain to them that I want it deactivated from its current user without his authorization and transferred to me? Which restaurant employee gets the used phone? Do they all share it? Not to mention that a used previous generation iPhone with no plan costs less online that the $200+ check this guy skipped out on.
No wonder less and less people want to visit the USA these days.
If you look at the statistics, more and more people visit the US every year. Don't invent "facts" to bolster your weak argument.
And if an American tried to pull a similar stunt in Italy, he'd get the cops called on him too.
And it would have absolutely zero impact on any rational American's desire to visit Italy.
I can't believe the sob stories FReepers fall for sometimes.
Especially if, as the story said, the man was a regular at the restaurant.
I believe in this instance the customer was legit. But this restaurant and others have been burned at least once too often. It has nothing to do with foreigners or where the customer came from. It had to do with where his wallet was or wasn’t.
In a restaurant, eating a meal then suddenly discovering you don’t have your wallet is pretty unacceptable behavior. If they had let the guy go and he never came back, and they had even one or two customers a week pull that stunt, they are out their tight profit margins. It’s no different than shoplifting which stores prosecute vigorously for very small amounts of $.
What real value would his cell have if he skipped out? Sell it on craigslist for less than the dinner tab? Maybe he could have called his host and asked him/her to bring his wallet to the restaurant instead of his leaving to get it, as he wanted to do? It’s unfortunate when honest people get caught up in a situation like this, but businesses, especially restaurants, have to deal with too many con artists.
My experience: Probably the owners/managers WERE foreigners.
Cultural issues, Americans are generally able to work with people whereas foreigners are hard-nosed when it comes to commerce.
Americans generally value the customer whereas foreigners have deep distrust (sometimes downright hostility) towards customers, especially customers they feel might be trying to take advantage of them.
Try customer service at any US company and if the customer service rep is American, usually easier to work with.
If customer service rep is foreigner, then no chance of understanding or compromise.