May 12, 2010

Pre-paid Restaurant

Arriving soon in Chicago, check out this trailer for a new restaurant:

Hat tip to The Operations Room

There are several interesting ideas about this concept and I encourage you to read what The Operations Rooms (link above) has to say about it.  The basic concept is that the restaruant will charge "fares" similiar to what an airline might charge.  Different fares will be charged for different times and days allowing for a better controll of demand. 

What I find interesting is that the sequence of a the restaurant experience is quite different with this concept, mainly that the payment for the meal is conducted well before the meal.  Research in marketing and psycology says that paying for a good or service is often the most painful aspect of a transaction because the customer has to give up their hard earned cash. Similiarly, in pain realted literature researchers show that medical procedures that end with high levels of pain (peak pain) are rated mcuh more painful by patients compared to rating for patients whose peak pain was not near the end of the procedure.  In one experiement, the end of a colonoscoply was artificaily prolonged to prove that by by ending further from a peak pain, overall pain would decrease. 

So, by move the peak pain (payment) further away from the end, will this concept see an improved service experience?  I just need to convice them to randomly make some people prepay and other pay at the end and maybe we'll find out....

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