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I have a concern about restaurants. Have you noticed that instead of getting a bill from the waiter or waitress and you taking it to a front counter to pay, the waiter or waitress asks you to hand over your money or credit card and whisks the form of payment away? This is supposedly done in the name of convenience for you, the customer. I’m not buying it.

When you hand over a credit or debit card and the waitress walks away with it, the card is no longer in your sight. You have no idea what happens to that card while it is outside of your possession. Is someone copying the numbers (including the security number on the back) and your name off of it? Does it make its way to the kitchen before it gets to the cash register? Does it fall in someone’s leftover salad as the waiter makes a quick round of his tables before processing the payment? A potential breech in financial security is not a convenience to the customer.

It’s not a convenience from another perspective, which Hubby helpfully pointed out. When your credit or debit card is whisked away, you can’t leave the restaurant until it is returned to you. That means you must sit at the table, thus preventing other wait staff from cleaning up until you are gone.

I’m not sure why most sit-down restaurants have resorted to this way of dealing with payments, but from the security issue alone, I wish they would stop. Over the weekend, when Hubby, Eldest Son and I visited a restaurant, I didn’t  allow the waitress to take my debit card, insisting instead on taking it up to the cash register myself. She looked rather flummoxed while she was processing it, but, hey, it’s my financial security that’s at risk, not hers.

If all restaurant customers would get testy and not hand over our credit or debit cards at the table, restaurants would change this procedure right quick.

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