Deli Imposes $3 ‘Yapping On Phone While Ordering’ Surcharge

phonefine

We don’t have a “Consumerist Hero Citation,” but if we did, it would go to the person at this Vermont deli who had the idea to impose a $3 fine for yapping on one’s cell phone while trying to order at the counter. “$3 will be added to your total if you fail to GET OFF YOUR PHONE while at the counter. IT’S RUDE,” the sign reads.

And it works. Reader Lenny, who noticed the sign, wrote to Consumerist, “I asked about it and they said they zapped an average of one customer a day for talking on a cell phone while ordering a sandwich.” Well, that’s an income booster. He added, “They also said that other businesses in the area are adopting the rule.”

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. Sorta Kinda Lucky Soul says:

    Excellent idea. Now if we can just expand this concept to almost every retail outlet we’d make lots of people happy.

    • redskull says:

      Agreed. I wish I lived closer to them; I’d give them all my business.

    • Phred says:

      I love the idea, but I can imagine people who get smacked with the surcharge getting angry and walking out, leaving the business with a prepared food order they no longer can sell.

    • regis-s says:

      I guess if it’s that big a problem they’d be making a hell of a lot of people unhappy too.

      I’m kind of surprised anyone would pay it.

    • zippy says:

      What if I’m on the phone to get the orders from the rest of my family/coworkers?

      There is a pizza joint near us that has a similar sign (although they don’t add a fine, just refuse to serve you), and they’ve never had a problem with me checking my phone for the texts of orders from the other people I’m getting food for. They just won’t help people who are yakking/texting stuff unrelated to their pizza order.

      • Phred says:

        Ever heard of a pencil and paper? Write the orders down before you walk in the door. Problem solved.

      • corridor7f says:

        Be ready before you get in line – and if your family can’t make up their mind about what they want, tuff nuts.

        This is even more annoying than people who have spent 4 minutes looking at the menu and still don’t know what they want. It’s KFC, they have CHICKEN.

      • Charmander says:

        Shouldn’t you have obtained their orders before getting to the counter?

  2. Blueskylaw says:

    Who the hell does this guy think he is, Bunk of America?

    • sp4rxx says:

      He is a smart citizen who has the right in his own Deli to eliminate rude people.

      Did you not read the article?

      • Coffee says:

        He’s making a snarky reference to the additional fee. It was a dig at Bank of America, not the business owner.

  3. raydee o'bugg says:

    Sometimes you just have to take action like this. If I’m at checkout, I’ll let my phone ring.

    Rude people in stores at the cash wrap is one of the reasons I never wanted to get a cell phone. Now I’m kind of obligated to have one, and I hate it. :/

    • Beyond Redemption says:

      Enter text…

    • Beyond Redemption says:

      As a (former) cashier, I have to say you are a rarity. I wouldn’t mind so much if it were a business call the customer was taking, but it almost NEVER is. (ONCE the customer apologised afterward, saying, “Sorry, that was my boss.” All the rest were BS.)

  4. Schildkrote says:

    The cell phone police are probably one of the most irritating things about modern society. They’re maddening. It seems like everybody has decided that it’s their job to get up in your business about when and where you can and cannot be on your phone. Tell you what, guys: when you pay for the phone, you get to decide what I can do with it.

    I know people need something to get all uppity and self-righteous about, but seriously, mind your own business. If this sandiwch shop tried to ding me for talking on a phone while I was getting ready to give them money, they’d be keeping their sandwich and I’d be leaving.

    • Bladerunner says:

      And, with all due respect, you’d be a rude, entitled asshole.

      1., It’s rude to be on the phone while doing a transaction, particularly one htat requries several bits of input from you.

      2., They have a sign. So you’re saying you would have not paid attention to what was right in front of you, then gotten all huffy when you were dinged for what they told you you’d be dinged for, and make them eat the cost of the sandwich?

      • MMD says:

        In the case of #2, that’s win-win for the shop!

        – A rude, entitled customer leaves in an offended huff (hopefully never to return – good riddance!)

        – The store is “stuck” with a sandwich that an employee will most likely have the opportunity to quite literally eat a delicious sandwich for free, since that’s less of a waste than throwing it out.

        • Schildkrote says:

          1.) My order at Subway: “Veggie sub, no tomatoes please.” Five words. Give or take a few if I were getting something else. I don’t think anyone has a problem communicating five words while talking on a cell phone despite the popular view of cell phone usage.

          2.) Would they rather eat the $3 for dinging me or the whole cost of the sandwich? If they lost a few complete sales to this sort of thing this policy would be gone right quick.

          Businesses today are anti-consumer enough as it is. They don’t need to proceed to acting openly hostile via aggressive signage in the store over what is actually a non-issue.

          • Phred says:

            What is so important about you and your cell phone that you can’t put it away while engaging in a face-to-face business transaction with another person? Serious question.

          • Agent Hooter Enjoys Enhanced Patdowns says:

            You’re confusing anti-consumer with anti-asshole. If you want to be in society, try to BE in it.

          • Bladerunner says:

            Again: You’re a rude, entitled d-bag.

            At subway, for example, you can’t just order that. They’ll want to know which, if any, cheese, which bread, which veggies specifically, do you want to make a meal, etc.

            So, you think you’ve given all necessary info, but you haven’t, so therefore they’re trying to get you to answer, but you’re ignoring them, because you think you’ve finished ordering. Thus, you’re being rude, both to the cashier and to the other customers.

            It’s not hard to be polite: “Hold on a second, I’m at the counter.”[put phone at least on shoulder, preferably hand up] “Hi, Yeah, I’d like a veggie sub…[rest of order]…[pay and actually pay attention to the transaction]…thanks!” [walk to seat, or back out to car, resuming conversation].

            • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

              This is part of what I came here to say, plus self-entitled douchenozzles who are too busy to stop talking for a minute or two also tend to not notice when the line moves up, and cause issues for other customers, especially in places where you move down the counter with your food.

          • crispyduck13 says:

            …over what is actually a non-issue.

            Spoken like someone who has never worked in the service industry. Also spoken like a self-important douchebag.

          • MMD says:

            - The whole cost of the sandwich is less than what you pay.
            – The transaction is more than your 5-word order. If you go back to your phone conversation, you’re ignoring any question or information the employee may have for you (“We’re out cucumbers, is that ok?”).
            – I can’t tell you how many payment transactions I’ve seen that have become comedies of errors when the customer is on a cell phone. Customer manipulates wallet/cash/credit card with one hand and drops something. cashier tries to hand back change or card but customer is distracted on the phone and leaves cashier hanging. Customer is distracted and walks away without credit card/change/order and has to be called after by cashier.
            – A “non-issue” to you is an issue to the overwhelming majority of people around you who are silently judging you without you knowing it, and who openly discuss how rude you are after you leave. Now you know.

          • MNGirl says:

            Um, NO! At Subway, if you walk in yapping on your phone and say “Veggie sub, no tomatoes.” I would be pissed. There is more to it then that. 6″ or foot long? What kind of bread? White, wheat, Monterrey cheddar, Italian herbs and cheese, honey oat, flat bread, Ciabotta (sp?) bread, then I need to know what kind of cheese? American? Cheddar? Pepper Jack? Provolone? Shredded? Do you want it toasted? By everything, does that include hot peppers? Because 90% of people that say they want the works, do not want jalapenos or banana peppers. Do you want any dressing, or seasoning? Then when you pay, if it is during a busy time, you are going to have to tell the cashier what you had, if you want any pop, chips, or cookies, and pay attention to her when she gives you a total.

            • PercussionQueen7 says:

              Yep. My 5-word order (Italian BMT on sourdough, please) is never enough information.

              • sp4rxx says:

                1. you made that 5 words on purpose
                2. they still would ask you toasted or not, any extra cheese, how about salt or pepper or sauce?

                so yeah …. no, it wouldn’t be 5 words

                • carlogesualdo says:

                  Nice try. My Subway never asks me if I want it toasted. They just do it whether I want it or not. And then my chicken comes out with ice crystals because they didn’t bother to heat it before they stuck it in the toaster. My relationship is Subway is love-hate.

          • Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

            Bogus post. You never ordered at a Subway. Ever.

          • richard.nixon says:

            Have you ever tried to serve a customer that i talking on their mobile? It seems to suddenly make them amazingly rude and unintelligible, therefore making it nigh impossible to complete their order properly. it is also infuriating and it isn’t that hard to get off the phone to make your order

          • richard.nixon says:

            Have you ever tried to serve a customer that i talking on their mobile? It seems to suddenly make them amazingly rude and unintelligible, therefore making it nigh impossible to complete their order properly. it is also infuriating and it isn’t that hard to get off the phone to make your order!

          • Princess Beech loves a warm cup of treason every morning says:

            I don’t think everyone orders veggie subs the way you do. Some people would like extras on their sandwiches, and if you’re new to a store it’ll require some extra thinking on your part as the shop may process your order quite differently.

            I for one can hardly concentrate on something else when I’m talking (although surprisingly I can multitask just fine by myself), and it’s just really violation of phone etiquette if you’re just blabbing on the phone in front of a person within your immediate vicinity that you are also interacting with (at the dining table or anywhere else).

            Sure, the shop will be out $3 fee, maybe a customer for life, but other supportive patrons will actually appreciate this policy and go there more often.

            I will say that we should all be responsible while using our phones. If you are the receiver, tell your caller to hold a few seconds just to check out. If you’re the caller, please be mindful of what the other person’s doing on the other end of the line and be patient (and don’t hold a grudge).

          • poco says:

            You’re welcome to stay away from my restaurant. Rude, entitled A-holes who slow down my line during the lunch rush because they think their personal conversation is more important than getting themselves (and by extension the people waiting behind them) in and out quickly are not worth the small amount of profit I’ll make from their order. In short: you’re expendable when you make yourself difficult to deal with.

          • Debbie says:

            By the same token, I assume that you have no problem with the server chatting on the phone while taking your order? Etiquette demands that the face-to-face conversation takes precedence over the phone.

    • Remarkable Melba Kramer says:

      The problem is, it is hard to mind your own business when some a-hole is talking loud into a cell phone.

      You would be doing us all a favor by leaving.

    • StarfishDiva says:

      You.

      I don’t like people like you.

    • MutantMonkey says:

      You must be trolling.

    • axhandler1 says:

      The cell phone yappers are probably one of the most irritating things about modern society. They’re maddening. It seems like everybody has decided that they are entitled to talk loudly on their phone whenever and wherever they please. Tell you what, guys: when you own your own business, such as a deli, you can make the rules inside for phone use. Don’t like it? Don’t go there.

      • MathMan aka Random Talker says:

        I feel like I’ve heard something like this before but making the opposite point. Hmmmm… :o)

        I’m with you though.

        The use of a phone in public areas, should be decided by public. Don’t like the public policy / law? – Work with your community and legislatures to change it.

        Use of phones in private business, should be determined by the private business. Don’t like the private policy? – Don’t go there.

        • MathMan aka Random Talker says:

          Argh, I didn’t know Consumerist added some automatic emoticon face-makey thing. It made my face look all weird…

          • raydee o'bugg says:

            Yeah, the new comment system has been driving me crazy too. In most forums you have the option of disabling emoticons, but in this bare-bones structure, you pretty much just have to guess.

            I’m still under moderation, for example, and you may never see this comment.

            • gc3160thtuk says you got your humor in my sarcasm and you say you got your sarcasm in my humor says:

              I see it and you lol

    • cyberpenguin says:

      Just because you pay for the phone doesn’t mean you can force others to wait while you hold up the line.

      If we followed your logic, since I paid for my gun I can do anything I want with it, including making an electronic mess of your phone if you’re holding up the line.

    • Back to waiting, but I did get a cute dragon ear cuff says:

      Uh, no. This is regarding the couple of seconds WHILE YOU ARE ORDERING. If you are on a call that is so important that you can’t put it down while you say:

      Pastrami on Rye with mustard and fries and a large coke

      then maybe you need to go back to the operating room.

      I have personally seen orders messed up by people that were too engrossed in the call about their upcoming weekend plans (on Wednesday) to make sure the order was correct or answer do you want mustard on that, then they go back and yell at the order taker for not getting it right.

      Now, if you want to talk while you are not being waited on, I have no problem. After you have placed your order and paid, no problem there either. But at least get off the phone, or say please hang on, for the 25 seconds it takes to place an order.

      • Smiling says:

        Why can’t people wait until they are off the phone to go up and place their order? Finish your call in the car, then go in and order. No one would ever have to tell me to get off my phone when ordering. It’s a very obvious act of human decency. Only a self-absorbed asshole would get in the line while talking on the phone and try to order. If I were these places, I would yell, “next” and tell the person they can get in the back of the line and order when they are off the phone.

        • Back to waiting, but I did get a cute dragon ear cuff says:

          Well, I guess I am a self absorbed asshole. I frequently get in line while I am talking. Now, when I get to the front to order, I stop and pay full attention to the person taking the order, but I guess that doesn’t count.

          We are a small business that frequently has projects that go into the evening. We feed our employees on our dime when we have these projects. We can have 15 people working to load 2 tractor trailers in an evening with office furniture. While I am in line, I am making sure what goes on what trailer, telling people which items to pull next, etc.

        • AustinTXProgrammer says:

          I would most certainly leave, never order again, and post a 1 start Yelp review about the rude staff.

          I usually browse and read news while I’m waiting in line, but if something is broken at work I may not get that chance.

          I will tell the person to hand on and drop the phone to waist level from the time I get to the counter till I sign my credit card receipt. That’s it.

          • Thespian says:

            With that kind of attitude, I’d say there’s no way you’re an Austin native. No way. You’re one of the transplants, one of the imports…you know, the ones everyone else in Austin wishes would move back to California.

            • AustinTXProgrammer says:

              I moved here from Dallas at 13… Lived in Houston before that. I’ve never even visited CA.

          • AustinTXProgrammer says:

            Although I imagine asking the phone party to hold and dropping the phone from my ear would be enough that I would never upset anyone enough to add the fee to begin with. I always pull my cart to the side in stores (even though when following my wife she seems to make this task about as difficult as possible) and generally try to follow patterns that would make life better for everyone if we could get 100% acceptance (which will NEVER happen).

    • AtlantaCPA says:

      Those traffic cops are so maddening too. I mean why do they get all up in my business when I’m doing 90 mph and cutting across lanes of traffic in a school zone? Tell you what, when you pay for the car you can decide what I can do with it.
      /s

      There is this thing called societal norms. You might want to look into them. (yea yea I know I compared a norm to a law but you get the idea)

      • RAEdwards says:

        Don’t agree with the first poster, but Speed Limits and School Zones are not Societal Norms. They are laws. Police officers are authorized to enforce those laws. Restaurants have no such obligation.

    • MightyHorse says:

      They’re not telling you to put down your precious cell phone. They’re just saying that if you choose to hold up everyone else’s day while you yap instead of ordering, then you’re gonna pay for it. Don’t like it? Don’t eat there.

    • GJaunts says:

      In civil society, when you interact with someone, you at least try to pretend that the interaction with this person is meaningful. That this other person is a human being with thoughts, feelings, memories, that they love and that they care and that they have interests. That they are not simply a medium for you to acquire a hoagie to stuff your fat, stupid, ugly face.

      Just try. Please. Don’t be horrible.

      • Schildkrote says:

        Oh, what victims they are.

        They should pretend, then, that I’m talking to the matron at the orphanage I own which I funded through my work as a professional good Samaritan. She needs to know RIGHT NOW which orphans are allergic to gluten in the gruel! This sandwich is the only food that I, a professional good Samaritan and owner of an orphanage, will see for days because I am so busy running orphanages! Don’t ding me for trying to help the children!

        I mean, that may or may not be true, but as far as they know it is.

        • Dami-chan says:

          Then finish your oh-so-important phone call before you open the front door. Or at least before you walk up to the counter.

        • MMD says:

          Serious question: have you ever worked a day of retail? During the cell phone age?

        • Princess Beech loves a warm cup of treason every morning says:

          Oooh, I didn’t know owning an orphanage entitles you to be an ass to other people without consequences.

          If it is really an emergency, say “excuse me”, step aside and wave the person behind you to just go in front of you.

          Besides, you have a sorely mismanaged orphanage if only YOU and no one else in the facility know which kid has allergies.

        • Princess Beech loves a warm cup of treason every morning says:

          Oh, what victim you are.

          You should pretend, then that the cashier, while patiently waiting for you to finish your call, has ended her shift in the moment that you were still yapping on the phone. As a single mom who’s new to town, thus having no relatives or friends to trust her kid with, she has to run over to school to pick up her kid who already told her school let them out early, so she is running pretty late. As she is running across the street to catch the bus, she gets hit by an oncoming car and dies, leaving the kid suddenly an orphan. Ironically he ends up in your orphanage, where you will eventually be plagued by guilt because if you hadn’t taken that split-second to get off the phone, this kid may still have his mother.

          I mean, that may or may not be true, but as far as you know it is.

      • corridor7f says:

        I think it should be mentioned that not only is talking on your cell rude, being on your smartphone is as well.

        Eg: the guy listening to music and checking his text messages who POINTS to what item he wants and goes back to digi-land. I was behind this lovely man and wanted to flog him with his ear buds.

      • carlogesualdo says:

        It isn’t meaningful. It’s a sandwich. I don’t care if the other person has thoughts, feelings, memories, and love. I don’t care about their interests. My job is not to be rude to that person, which does not require me to ask about their family or their hobbies or their hopes and dreams.

        In turn, their job is to get my order from me, fill it, take my payment, and not be rude to me. No matter what they say to me, it’s my job not to be rude. I may complain to a manager, but my job still includes not being rude. But here’s the kicker – this is a service-industry job and the reality is that a lot of people are jerks. It’s still that person’s job NOT TO BE RUDE, no matter what I do. And that means not charging me a $3 surcharge if I happen to be having a rare day where I have to do 5 things at once. There is a much more acceptable procedure for dealing with this issue – and that is asking the person on the phone to step out of line until they’re ready. If they ignore you, help the next person in line. That will either get their attention, or they’ll continue on without noticing.

        Frankly, you’re never going to catch me doing this because I simply don’t talk on the phone. But I make a habit of avoiding businesses that put signs up instructing customers to get off the phone, and I can assure you that I’d be right behind a customer who didn’t appreciate being treated that way, regardless of why said customer was on the phone. Because guess what? That’s rude too, and from someone who ought to know better. I’d rather give my money to someone who appreciates my business, even if I’m occasionally distracted.

        Feel free to pile on the vitriol – I know I frequently take the contrarian’s view here – but I’m not playing the devil’s advocate this time.

        • Bladerunner says:

          It is not rude to state there will be a charge, and I’m unclear why you think it would be. It’s simply stating there sill be a fee if you do this rude thing. Not even “we will make you get out of line”, just “we will make you pay slightly more”. If my call was that important, I wouldn’t mind the additional fee; I’d feel less bad about how rude I was being.

        • RandomLetters says:

          By being on the phone and not giving the person taking your order your full attention while they make sure they get your order right you are being rude to them. As such you have failed at your job (as you define it).

    • dolemite says:

      “The cell chatters are probably one of the most irritating things about modern society. ” Fixed it for ya.

    • Zelgadis says:

      The solution is simple. If you don’t want people to “get up in your business” when you’re yaking on your cell, then stop sharing your business with everyone by yaking on your cell. :)

      • crispyduck13 says:

        I honestly believe that person never put those 2 things together. What a waste of oxygen.

    • Dami-chan says:

      As someone who has worked in both the food and retail industry I can officially say yes, you are a d-bag. Get off your F’n phone when you deal with society. It’s rude. The people across the counter are human beings just like you and they deserve your respect and undivided attention.

      • AtlantaCPA says:

        I’m going to see you and raise you a ‘get off your phone when you’re just around other people, even if you’re not trying to interact with them.’ On the phone while ordering is horrible, but on the phone in an elevator or a crowded bus or movie theater sucks too.

        • Smiling says:

          Or when you are on the toilet in the public bathroom. That is seriously rude and gross.

          • Princess Beech loves a warm cup of treason every morning says:

            Yah, when you hear the tinkle and flush it’s just embarrassing.

            I, for one, like to have my phone conversations privately — I can never seem to carry on a conversation in a public place for some reason without keeping my voice as low as possible. I just feel like I really don’t want anyone hearing what I’m talking about if they’re not part of the conversation.

        • ChuckECheese says:

          Let me add, if you’re in a restaurant, don’t go to the patio to have your loud cell phone conversation, because there are people eating out there too.

      • orclev says:

        Whether I’m on the phone or not the “people across the counter” get exactly the same respect and attention, that is exactly enough to take my order and receive all the information they need to fulfill my order, at which point I will usually return to talking with whoever is with me in line, or very rarely on the other end of the phone call. In the case of this deli, I’d probably just pay the $3 if the food was worth it, otherwise I’d go someplace else, although in general I apply same standard no matter what so the $3 isn’t really even a factor.

    • nofunick says:

      This is why I carry a $39.00 cell signal jammer I got in China. Normally turned off in my pocket. Flick the switch and no one within 15 feet has service. Illegal yes; but very satisfying.

    • shepd says:

      He is minding his own business. It’s his business, and he’ll have the customers he wants there. If you feel like the business owner is crazy, speak with your wallet and leave.

      Personally, I don’t care either way, however, I can understand the frustration of ignorant customers.

    • elangomatt says:

      So funny that one of “them” posted the third reply. You are not the center of the world and you have no right to make the people behind you wait longer because you can’t get off your phone for the 30 seconds (or less) it takes to make your order. Be a human being and think about some besides your sorry rude self.

    • StarKillerX says:

      Schildkrote,

      Obviously Bladerunner’s subsciption to Popular Science lapsed so they were unable to read the article informing us all that the world revolves around you.

      Get over yourself!

      No one cares if your babbling away into your phone 24/7. But most do care if your doing so in a manner to puts other people on the roads at risk or cause people to stand in a non-moving line because some self-important ass feels that their phonecall about what they had for lunch is more important then paying for their stuff and moving along so everyone else can do the same.

      • Janus, Should I laugh or cry? says:

        “But most do care if your doing so in a manner to puts other people on the roads at risk”

        A few hours ago I was walking within a clearly marked pedestrian cross-walk next to a supermarket. I expected that the van that was slowly creeping along would stop at the cross-walk. No, she was way too busy talking on the cell phone unable to notice anything and drove through the cross-walk. If I didn’t jump out of the way, I wouldn’t be writing this.

        The other day in the movie theater, two guys are playing with their LCDs during the main movie. I thought I’d be clever and I asked them to google me a nearby pizza place (thinking that they’d get the hint). One guy said he was watching the movie and continue to stare at the LCD. I ask again. Same response. I stopped being cute and told them to put their precious LCDs away. Ever so slowly, the LCDs slid away.

    • Coffee says:

      I don’t normally pile on, but I’ll make an exception in your case. Telling people to stop being uppity and self-righteous, and that they should mind their own business, when you’re the one standing in line, forcing them to listen to half of your conversation? That takes a special kind of hypocrisy reserved for the super-entitled, egocentric moron of the sort who blithely goes through life never thinking of other people.

      You’re in public. Try to at least fake being a decent person for a few minutes.

    • 85% Real 15% Filler says:

      The rude cell phone talkers are probably one of the most irritating things about modern society. They are maddening. It seems like everybody has decided that it’s their right to get up in your business with their personal conversations when ever and where ever they want without regard for people around them. Tell you what: when you own your own business, you get to decide what you can do with it.

      I know these people need to get all uppity and self-consumed, but seriously, be mindful of the people around you. If this asshole was talking on the phone while I was trying to take his order and keep the line in my shop moving, they’d be getting dinged an extra $3 for their sandwich or be leaving.

    • ArchersCall says:

      Seriously? So you think you are entitled to irritate everyone around you with overly loud conversation and ringtones that only you want to hear? You think it’s perfectly okay to DISTURB everyone else in a movie theatre with your BRIGHT light while texting, or failing yet again to put your phone on silence because you are entitled to be a jack a$$ just because you paid for a phone. While what if I paid for a sling shot and popped you with it everytime you annoyed the crap out of me with your phone. I’m entitled to do it right? I paid for it and I can do it when ever I please.

      I bet you text and drive at the same time too. You’re an jack a$$ and if you get into a wreck I hope you’re the one that gets sued for your imaginary entitlement to use your phone when and where you please.

      • bd2008 says:

        “what if I paid for a sling shot and popped you with it everytime you annoyed the crap out of me with your phone.”

        That would be AWESOME.

    • ovalseven says:

      Regardless of how you personally handle the situation, customers like this are inevitable:

      http://notalwaysright.com/driving-the-point-home/4713

    • Sorta Kinda Lucky Soul says:

      Ass

    • El_Fez says:

      If this sandiwch shop tried to ding me for talking on a phone while I was getting ready to give them money, they’d be keeping their sandwich and I’d be leaving.

      And if I were the owner, I would gladly tell you to get the hell out of my store on the assumption that you were a self entitled douchebag ass who thinks telling my sister about little Timmy’s soccer practice is more important that interacting with the person who is standing in front of them. And I would do so with a HUGE smile on my face.

    • DoodlestheGreat says:

      And as can be seen from the replies, you’d be compensated for by hundreds more who’d be glad they could come to a shop that knows what the hell they’re doing.

    • Evil_Otto would rather pay taxes than make someone else rich says:

      What everyone else who replied said, with extra “You’re an asshole” on the side.

    • incident_man says:

      I’d love to see you try that logic when a cop stops you for talking on your cellphone while driving.

      “When you pay for the phone, you get to decide what I can do with it.”

      Go directly to jail; do not pass “GO,” do not collect $200.

    • Kuri says:

      Buddy, if you decided to leave like that, I wouldn’t be able to tell you to get out fast enough.

    • corridor7f says:

      Awesome. That’s the plan.

    • chargernj says:

      In your store you can allow people to talk on the phone, in his privately owned business he gets to set his own rules.

    • ovalseven says:

      No one is telling you what you can’t do with your phone. However, many business are telling you what they won’t do while you’re on it. Sounds fair to me.

      No one owes you anything.

    • RvLeshrac says:

      And if you were eating at The Varsity, the single most popular restaurant in the entire City of Atlanta, you’d be sent to the back of the line. They’d keep sending you to the back of the line until you HUNG UP YOUR DAMNED PHONE.

      The hundreds of other customers they serve don’t give a damn about you, because they’re too busy ordering and -NOT TALKING ON THE PHONE-.

      • bjcolby15 says:

        I agree with this for many reasons.

        If you’re on a quick conversation and hang up to order your sandwich, fine. But if you’re the rude jerk who carries on with their shallow cellphone conversation with your damn iDevice crooked in your ear, a much more hefty fee should be imposed. $10 seems much more fair than $3.

    • Charmander says:

      I ran into somebody like you today at work. First, the asshole was talking into his bluetooth, but not in a normal tone or even a quiet tone of voice – no, he was LOUDLY talking so that everyone in a 50 ft vicinity had to hear it.

      Part of my job requires I cut keys at the key machine. I noticed he had keys in his had, so I figured he needed a key cut. Well, I finished helping my other customer, and then, because he was busy yapping LOUDLY, I started walking away (I had plenty of other things to do.)

      I hear him shouting ” Miss, Miss….can I get a couple of keys cut?” So, I had to turn around, and help him. But I made sure to ask him all kinds of questions, so that it was impossible for him to talk on the phone, so he told his business associate that he’d call him back and hung up.

      If that was you, I just want to say – you’re an asshole!!

    • Peggee has pearls and will clutch them when cashiers ask "YOU GOT A WIC CHECK MA'AM?" says:

      Tell you what, guys: when you pay for the phone, you get to decide what I can do with it.

      And when you pay the rent/payroll for the restaurant/store, you get to tell them how to run their business.

    • Difdi says:

      And if I was the manager, I’d report you for dine and dash.

      You being inconsiderate and rude entitles me to treat you accordingly. Got a problem with being treated like you were an asshole? Stop acting like one.

    • Rhinoguy says:

      So basically you reserve the right to be rude in public? Fine.

    • chefboyardee says:

      Obvious troll is obviously retarded.

  5. HomerSimpson says:

    Does this apply to the staff as well?

  6. deathbecomesme says:

    Not that I agree with customers talking on the phone while ording but if I were one of those customers I would wait till the very last minute after they already made the sandwich and when it came time to pay up I’d “change my mind”. Let them eat to fee and the cost of the food.

    • Bladerunner says:

      Why? The sign is posted, everyone should know in advance the consequences of their rude behavior.

    • RandomLetters says:

      That’s actually a crime called theft of services.

      • andsowouldi says:

        Agreed. You’re legally obligated to pay for what you’ve ordered. On the other hand though, if the owner called the police over a sandwich (seems unlikely in a case like this), I’m not sure what the officer would do if the customer pointed out they were trying to charge him for talking on his cell phone also. Maybe just make him pay for the original sandwich price? I doubt the officer would make the person pay for additional $3, but I’d appreciate if he did.

        • Bladerunner says:

          The $3 is a valid charge. I’d expect the cop to enforce it.

          Think of the “surcharge” some places add to the bill for large parties. If it was posted, but someone didn’t read it, then tried to not pay at all because they were huffy about a charge they should have known about, the officer wouldn’t say “well, pay for the food at least”, I would expect them to say “pay this bill, in full, or go to jail.”

        • Phred says:

          Th cop can’t make you pay or not pay. That’s not his job. He can arrest you or not, and let the courts deal with the rest.

      • shepd says:

        There’s an even simpler name for the crime: “Bilking”. It means “making off without paying” which is a better description of what happened, since there’s no actual theft (the shop owner, however, is left with useless product and wasted time).

        • RandomLetters says:

          There is theft, the useless product and wasted time is what has been stolen (in a legal sense). I worked at a convience store during college and we had a guy come in and open Dr Peppers till he found a free 20oz drink cap (this is before everyone moved to internet based promotions). I went and got the 6 drinks he opened with no intention of buying and told him he’d be paying for those as well. There was a bit of back and forth about it but when the sheriff’s deputy arrived he quickly found out he’d be paying for them or spending the night in jail over it.

          • shepd says:

            That is theft since the product was destroyed by the customer.

            However, there’s no theft if the product never enters the customer’s hands. Rather, there’s a breach of a verbal contract. It’s the equivalent of ordering 1,000 custom made widgets, then refusing shipment and refusing to pay for them. No theft, just a broken contract.

            Fortunately, the sort of thing where someone doesn’t pay for their custom sandwich does have more than just contract law behind it. But it shouldn’t be theft, since there isn’t any.

            Same reason I give people heck about calling copyright infringement theft. It isn’t unless it involves counterfeit product (that was passed off as real at a full retail price).

    • Scooter McGee says:

      I’m sure it won’t take long for them to change it so you have to pay before they even start making the sandwich.

    • RedOryx says:

      You know what annoys me more than people talking on their cell phones at the counter? When people throw a fit because they ignored the posted signs.

      • Sorta Kinda Lucky Soul says:

        Amen!

      • ArchersCall says:

        Agreed. They are within their rights to charge what ever they want as long as they inform you. If you don’t like it, you can decline doing business with them.

      • Coffee says:

        Thank you…beautifully said.

      • deathbecomesme says:

        I’m just playing devils advocate here. Like I said above I dont agree with people talking on cells while ordering. It bugs me too and they deserve to pay up if they don’t pay attention. Just saying what I would do if I were in there shoes.

      • mauispiderweb says:

        You expect them to actually READ the rules that are posted all over the place? Are you out of your mind?! They’re busy and important and can’t possibly be bothered to act like a responsible human being. THEY HAVE 99 THINGS TO DO, DAMNIT AND BEING A FUNCTIONING PART OF SOCIETY ISN’T ONE OF THEM!

        • RedOryx says:

          Haha, actually if I’ve learned one thing it’s that the signs I posted aren’t for the benefit of the people to read them. They are there for me to point to.

          • RvLeshrac says:

            Former manager once put up a sign reading “Don’t Be Stupid.” When people were ‘offended’ by the sign, he told them that the sign should only be offensive if they’re being stupid.

  7. axhandler1 says:

    I fully support this. Talking on your cell phone while trying to place an order is rude, and common courtesy is fast disappearing from this country.

    • Garry Bentwick says:

      Courtesy you say? So does this mean I get 3$ off while I stand at the counter and wait for the cashier to finish her conversation about her boyfriend with her co-worker?

      • AtlantaCPA says:

        I think that’s a valid request to make of the manager.

      • axhandler1 says:

        I would consider that rude as well. However, I also feel it’s easier to interrupt someone who is having a face-to-face convo with someone else than someone who is talking on their cell phone.

        • Garry Bentwick says:

          “I also feel it’s easier to interrupt someone who is having a face-to-face convo with someone else than someone who is talking on their cell phone.”

          Really? How much easier?

          • axhandler1 says:

            Well, if they are talking to a cashier right next to them, and I say excuse me, they both hear me and the conversation stops. If they are on a cell phone and I say excuse me, they have to say “Hold on a sec” to the person on the phone before they turn and address me.

            • Garry Bentwick says:

              And that happens every time does it?

              • axhandler1 says:

                Every time? No, probably not. Are you making some kind of point here?

                • Garry Bentwick says:

                  Yes. The point is that your argument is specious. The notion that it may or may not be easier to break up such a face to face conversation is completely irrelevant. You’ve said you think it’s fine to charge people extra if they keep you waiting. I agree. It’s called “reciprocity”. What you’re doing is trying to make some justification that the concept shouldn’t be universally applied.

                  • axhandler1 says:

                    Well, finally. Next time try and make your point a little quicker instead of posing snarky questions please. Also, re-read my post. I never made the argument that you shouldn’t get money off if the cashier makes you wait while talking to her friend. I merely said that face to face conversations, in my opinion, are easier to interject upon, thus, less time spent waiting and less hassle then when dealing with a person on a cell phone. So, not irrelevant. I don’t think it should be universally applied. Unless you think that the same penalties should apply for someone who keeps you waiting for ten seconds vs. someone who keeps you waiting for 2 minutes.

      • Bladerunner says:

        You assume that happens here. Not every business has crappy employees.

        Now, if an employee WAS doing that, and it was legitimately holding up the line, you could likely get a manager to give you $3 bucks off if you played the “well, if I was on my cell phone it would have cost me more” card, but you’re off in the weeds of hypothetical other scenarios. They don’t have a sign saying you get a discount if an employee spits in your food, either.

        • frank64 says:

          If a business put up the sign for customers, they are going to already have a much more strict policy for employees.

      • regis-s says:

        Yeah, if there’s a sign saying so.

    • dolemite says:

      Not just rude, but they delay the checkout process. They aren’t listening to their totals, they take longer to get their CC, Check, etc. because they are focusing on a meaningless conversation instead of their transaction.

  8. mauispiderweb says:

    Well, probably all independently-owned businesses, anyway. :/

    I APPLAUD THEIR DECISION AND SUPPORT IT FULLY!

  9. Garry Bentwick says:

    This isn’t going to turn out the way they think. This is America and you can bet your last red cent that they’ll pull this on some pissed off lawyer and then things will get even more ridiculous. Why not simply say that if you’re not prepared to order that we move on to the person behind you who is prepared to order and that you have to go to the back of the line? A somewhat similar situation came up at LAX where Muslim cab drivers were refusing service to anyone who had purchased alcohol at the duty free store there. They were told that they could indeed refuse service to those carrying alcohol but that since it would be unfair to the other cabbies that didn’t care if people had any alcohol that they’d have to move to the back of the line while waiting for another shot at a fare. Cleared that problem right up!

  10. baltimoron says:

    Does this refer to when you are placing your order, paying for it, or both?

    • axhandler1 says:

      It says at the counter, so I figure it is probably just for ordering. Usually procedure at a deli is to place your order at the counter, then go to the register to pay. Even though talking while paying is also rude, it’s less of a problem because having someone ring you up and then paying for your order doesn’t really require any back and forth. Placing an order at a deli counter does.

      • MMD says:

        Have you ever conducted a payment transaction with someone who’s on the phone?

        • axhandler1 says:

          No.

          • MMD says:

            Obviously. Because if you had, you’d know how a distracted customer makes a simple process a drawn-out, elaborate ritual.

            • axhandler1 says:

              Right. So if I get my sandwich from the deli counter, and on the way to the register, my phone rings and I answer it, it’s really gonna turn checking out into “drawn-out, elaborate ritual.” Gimme a break. You’ve never had a guy slap his 6 dollar sandwich down on the counter along with a twenty while talking on his phone? Ring up his sandwich, put the change in his outstreched hand and he walks out the door. Wow, what a process.

              • gc3160thtuk says you got your humor in my sarcasm and you say you got your sarcasm in my humor says:

                Tell that to my mom. I had to fuss at her at Walmart for talking on the phone while trying to pay cause she was taking forever and it was holding up the line.

                • axhandler1 says:

                  Lol, I’m sure some customers do make it an ordeal, yes, but it certainly doesn’t have to be. If the customer pays even a little attention to what they are doing, it should go fine. For instance, the example I just painted. I feel like I could talk on the phone and pay for my purchases without holding up anyone, I just think it’s incredibly rude, so I don’t do it.

                  • RvLeshrac says:

                    While you’re engaged in any part of the transaction, STAY OFF THE FUCKING PHONE.

                    You can call them back in the 30 seconds it takes to finish the transaction.

                    Oh, what’s that? It takes longer to get through the line? Perhaps because of all the people who won’t STAY OFF THE FUCKING PHONE for the entire transaction.

  11. malimal99 says:

    it may drive some of their customers away, but I support the sign.

    • mianne prays her parents outlive the TSA says:

      As to the customers it does drive away, my only response is, “Good riddance!”

      Oh and, “Try not to mow down any pedestrians while you chatter on incessantly about that restaurant that supposedly overcharged you.”

  12. gtrgod01 says:

    What if the person you are talking on the phone with is giving you the details for the sandwich you are ordering for them?

    I agree with others…..wait till the last minute and then let them keep the sandwich. If i’ve given them the required amount of attention to prepare my order correctly then I fail to see a problem.

    • MMD says:

      Get the order before you get in line! Not that hard.

      How do you know what the “required amount of attention” is until you’re actually in the middle of the order? What if they’re out of something and need to ask you for a different order/permission to substitute an ingredient, etc., and you’re back to your phone conversation because you think you’ve already paid enough attention?

    • cantiloon says:

      Order takers are by far the worst people to be behind! I would rather hear half of a conversation about pooping than be behind someone inconsiderate enough not to get their order first because it really can hold up the line. It’s bad enough when you’re at a place like Chipotle and the person in front of you has who you thought would just breeze through ends up having six orders (use the online, fax, or app and skip the line for your own sake and that of others!) but if that person is going to be on the phone going through each option on each order than they’re seriously in violation.

      I was being picking up donuts for my department one day and was behind a guy who literally took five minutes to order a dozen motherfreaking donuts because he was on the phone going over all of their 20+ varieties and how many to get of which ones. I think corporal punishment is not only fair but imperative in that situation.

  13. frank64 says:

    I understand his reasoning, but fining customers is going to piss them off. Just the negative sign tells me the owner might be a jerk. Why not start with a sign that says” Please don’t talk on cell phone while ordering”, and see how that goes first.

    Many times someone is ordering for a group at work and there may be a legitimate question on what someone wanted, especially if the deli is out of something

    • Scooter McGee says:

      “Many times someone is ordering for a group at work and there may be a legitimate question on what someone wanted, especially if the deli is out of something”

      Then you step out of line, call that person, let others who are waiting place their orders go ahead and then get back in line when the call is complete.

    • dolemite says:

      “fining customers is going to piss them off”. That’s fine. I wouldn’t want customers that think their own tiny little world can’t be intruded on for even a second, to be courteous to people around them, anyhow.

    • selianth says:

      “Why not start with a sign that says” Please don’t talk on cell phone while ordering”, and see how that goes first. ”

      There are signs like that all over the place these days. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen them on this very blog before. I’ve seen people in line on their phones, looking directly at a sign like that and either staring right through it (because they’re distracted by their conversation) or snort and roll their eyes at it, and continue to be rude to the cashier and everyone around them. I would be shocked if this deli hadn’t tried it already, and it didn’t work. This seems like simply the next step they’re taking.

      • ChuckECheese says:

        Because those polite signs without consequences don’t work. And we don’t know if that was already tried. I imagine the employees asked the customers to get off the phone, and had to deal with hostile disagreeable reactions, and yet more delays while the talker made their explanations, said good-bye, and hung up.

      • Difdi says:

        Or perhaps, “If you’re on the phone you’re not in line” and then follow that rule.

  14. apasserby says:

    One of the Mennonite vendors at the Dutch Country Market near me has had a similar sign up for years. Goes something like this: ‘We will ignore customers using a cell phone. Get out of line and finish the call. Then return to the back of the line. to wait your turn.’

    • ChuckECheese says:

      Mennonites aren’t usually so punchy. They must be Old Order Angries. The men probably foam at the beard.

  15. Joedragon says:

    YOU TALK ON YOUR PHONE IN MY LINE NO SOUP FOR YOU NEXT!

  16. LightningUsagi says:

    One of the nicer restaurants that my BF likes has a “no cell phones in the dining room” policy. It’s printed right on the menus. The wait staff will ask you to take the call outside if they catch you talking.

  17. RedOryx says:

    I fully support this. I’ve spent years in customer service and there is nothing more frustrating than trying to complete an order while the person is on the phone and only giving you a fraction of their intention. It’s rude to me and it’s rude to the other customers waiting in line because the transaction takes twice as long.

  18. JohnDeere says:

    great way to lose business.

    • Sorta Kinda Lucky Soul says:

      Actually it will gain them business; I HATE standing behind some bozo who won’t get off their phone – it delays progress and slows everyone down. Speeding up ordering will lead to more business, faster service, greater happiness overall.

    • RedOryx says:

      Sure, they might lose those customers who are the ones too busy and important to get off the phone but there are plenty of people who will appreciate this move and start frequenting the deli.

      Win win.

      • gtrgod01 says:

        A policy like this really isn’t going to gain them any new business. They will lose some for sure, but gain? Not as many as it will lose. My guess is it would only be enforced by the manager (or when he/she is there) anyway because no sandwich-jockey is going to want the hassle/argument that ensues when he/she tries to enforce the policy.

        • ChuckECheese says:

          Based on the ratio of responses on this thread, I think you’re wrong.

          • gtrgod01 says:

            ….and that’s because everything you read on the internet is true right? I find that in reality, the results are very different.

            • Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

              The reality of what? You know absolutely nothing about the deli, the people who work there, or its customers.

              Fail.

              • gtrgod01 says:

                You are making the assumption that just because “the ratio of reponses in this thread” seems to trend towards this gaining them more customers than losing that it surely must be true. The “reality” is probably most on here just love to argue and post comments for the sake of doing so and if they were actually faced with a situation of having to travel further or go out of their way in any fashion just so “they don’t have to (possibly) be behind someone on a cell phone” they wouldn’t actually do so. That’s the “reality” of the situation. Most will choose the option of possibly (because it doesn’t happen every time you’re in line) being mometarily delayed/annoyed by a cell phone talker over going out of their way practically every time.

                Time is important to everyone and i highly doubt that anyone on here “in real life” would take MORE time out of their day (likely traveling to a less convenient /possibly further location) just to get lunch unless this particular deli has so much of a problem with cell phone talkers that practically everyone and every given moment in line is doing it.

                So, unless YOU actually go to this particular deli and can verify that at any given moment of any given day there is always a cell phone talker in line wasting everyone’s time then YOU fail.

                Oh and if you are the kind of person that would travel an extra 3-5 miles out of your way for such a silly policy when there is a perfectly good deli a block away (with *gasp* the possibility of a cell phone talker in line) then you still FAIL because you are further polluting the environment and wasting gas with your car by taking an un-necessary trip simply because you didn’t want to be “possibly” delayed or annoyed.

                • elangomatt says:

                  I think your argument mostly depends on whether there are suitable alternatives nearby the deli with the awesome cell phone rule. From my work, I have to drive 1.5 miles to get to the sandwich shops that I go to fairly regularly. There is a Subway and a Jimmy Johns there within half a block of each other. I go Jimmy Johns at least twice as often as Subway.

                  Jimmy Johns has fashioned their sandwiches to be mostly not customized. You walk up to the register and say I want a #11 and a #12 for my co-worker. If you want custom stuff they’ll do it, but most people don’t. You can even do the ordering there while on a cell phone call without much disruption to the speed actually, though paying is a bit more problematic. Even during the lunch rush, I am in and out in less that 3 or 4 minutes almost every time.

                  Subway on the other hand, you go in tell them what you want and then you have to decide size, cheese, toasted, veggies, sauces, and seasoning. That’s fine and all, but making a sandwich for someone NOT on a cell phone takes more time, but not a lot more if you know what you want. Add the cell phone into the mix and people stop paying as much attention to the “sandwich artist” and they have to be asked 2 or 3 times for what they want for each thing on their sandwich. During the lunch rush, it seems like there is someone every few trips trying to carry on a cell phone conversation during the sandwich making. It is bad enough when the person has just one sandwich, but the line grinds to a total stop if they have multiple sandwiches. During the normal lunch rush at Subway it always takes me 7 or 8 minutes minutes to get out with no cell phone talkers, add a cell phone talker or two to the mix and it is usually 10+ minutes.

                  My whole point is that I usually go to Jimmy Johns a lot more often because of their speed and the fact that a cell phone talker doesn’t really disrupt the process much. I pretty much only go to Subway if I want a hot sub and go to Jimmy Johns the other times since the cell phone talkers have so much less of an impact.

            • MMD says:

              [citation needed]

        • elangomatt says:

          I think they probably would gain a bit of business. If I am going somewhere to pick up lunch and usually I want to quickly get in and out, I am going to go to the place that has faster service. If there is a place that enforces some no-cell-phone-while-ordering rule, then I’d probably go there since those problem customers invariably slow things down.

        • bearfan says:

          Those sandwich jockey’s as you call them work hard for their money ass! What do you do for a living that makes you so self important?

  19. Harry Greek says:

    I have seen this many times; it’s a busy lunch hour, and the line is packed with hungry people. Someone is on the phone talking (usually really low,… while it’s very loud all around – how do they even hear what is being said???) and the people behind the counters ask; “Next, may I take your order,…”

    The yapper does not acknowledge.

    Put the phone down for the 5 to 10 minutes it will take you to place your food order and get it. It’s not that hard.

    Even worse, the order is placed, the food is made, the pick up is called out,… but the yapper is too busy.

    It’s just total thoughlessness.

    • CalicoGal says:

      I remember going to a busy deli, where the order taker would ignore the next person in line if he was on the phone and didn’t make eye contact, the order taker would skip the inattentive yapper and take the next person in line’s order. Then when Yappy noticed he’d been skipped, the order taker would make him wait as non-yappers passed along.
      Then, the order taker would take his order.
      Passive aggression FTW!

  20. RandomHookup says:

    This can’t be a legit sign … everything is spelled properly (including “IT’S”).

    • raydee o'bugg says:

      To be fair, a lot of well-educated, intelligent, literate individuals are having to take low-paying sancdwich-slinging jobs because they cannot get grown-up jobs.

      It means a brief upswing in the quality of hand-written signs. They might not care about their minimum wage job, but they definitely care about clear communication.

      I was one of those people–though I was slinging ice cream, not sandwiches.

  21. ferozadh says:

    Cue all the assholes to come out of the woodwork and say it’s their cellphone bought with their hard-earned money and they’ll do whatever they want. You sure can. Just stay in the bubble of vacuum that you live in.

  22. Foot_Note says:

    best idea ever!

  23. dullard says:

    It is rude and inconsiderate to use one’s cell phone in such a manner that disturbs or delays others. Restaurants are not telephone booths.

  24. theblackdog says:

    I hope it shows up on the receipt as GOTFPD $3.00

    (Get off the fucking phone douchebag)

  25. lovemypets00 - You'll need to forgive me, my social filter has cracked. says:

    I know this is going to sound like I’m a luddite, but somehow, 20 years ago, we managed to go grocery shopping, order sandwiches and pizza at shops, and even walk across parking lots – all without being on the phone and yapping away.

    I really don’t mind if I’m in the grocery store, and someone calls home and says “what cereal did you want? Oh, OK, be home in a bit, bye”. What really bugs me is people who walk around carrying on entire gossipy conversations, stopping in the aisle, holding up the checkout lines, etc. It’s rude, and honestly, it wastes my time, so that makes it my business.

    If you can’t make a quick half hour trip to the sandwich shop and back without talking on the phone, you have issues.

    • AtlantaCPA says:

      You really needed to have used “back in my day…” somewhere in there.

    • dru_zod says:

      Some people can’t make a 30-second trip from their car to the store without talking on the phone. Thirty minutes without someone to talk to would probably cause them to have an anxiety attack. Some people even have to make calls while they are in public bathrooms, just to pass the time as they do their business. It’s ridiculous.

  26. Bodger says:

    I am impressed not only by the action but by the correct use of the contraction “it’s”. That appears to be beyond most today. I would probably give them a $3 tip just for that.

  27. Shtetl G says:

    Am I really the only person who first thought that Dell was trying to add 3 dollars to all phone orders because I had misread the word deli?

  28. 3fingerbrown says:

    Let’s see… deli owners who insult me and are rude are thought to be cute. If I am rude at a deli I have to pay a rudeness tax?

  29. Peg Warner says:

    Also known in the service industry as a douchebag tax.

  30. Pete the Geek says:

    I agree that distracted “yapping” on a cellphone slows the line, but I disagree with the phone fine for several reasons. Patrons can slow the line in various ways, including talking to someone in line, not knowing what they want, or having questions. A customer may be getting orders for coworkers and need to talk to them during the order process. A busy worker may have a very narrow window of time to both get lunch and check on his or her kids. Or perhaps someone needs to call the bank, insurance company, or doctor but still needs to eat lunch. Delays in the order line are a part of life. I believe that the deli management would do better to find constructive ways to reduce all the delays in the line instead of singling out phones. For example, they could put someone at the head of the line to take orders and help people with their questions.

    • penuspenuspenus says:

      It’s nothing about slowing down the line. It’s about courtesy. If you want to be ill-mannered and talk on the phone while someone is trying to help you, fine. That’s $3.

      If you waited in line for me to give you my attention, I bet you’d be mighty pissed when it was your turn and I ignored you or gestured for you to hold on while I had a private conversation.

    • MMD says:

      “For example, they could put someone at the head of the line to take orders and help people with their questions.”

      This would solve many types of delays, but would create one more employee for cell phone users to ignore.

      Cell users aren’t the only ones who cause delays, but their behavior is the most offensive of the factors you listed and the behavior that can most easily be corrected.

  31. dush says:

    So if you really like this store would you purposely talk on your phone so they could make more profit on your meal?

  32. Buzz says:

    Reply to Zippy, you should already know what to order before you get to the register. This is an awesome idea. I wonder if the soup nazi came up with this idea.

  33. Fafaflunkie Plays His World's Smallest Violin For You says:

    If only retailers could take this one step further: allowing bouncers to forcibly take said person more interested in his/her phone than communicating with the person taking the order out of the line and giving him/her a little lesson in etiquette. Yeah, I know there’d be repercussions doing this–ambulance chasing lawyers would have a field day, not to mention that would be considered a criminal offence as the laws are written now–but if there’d only be a way to legalize this, I’d be a happy panda.

  34. Tijil says:

    That should work both ways.

    When I’m at the counter ordering, if the salesperson answers the phone, I should get a discount on what I’m charged…

  35. diello says:

    I like the sign. But an easier method is that the counter-person can just look pass the yappers and onto the next customer and take their order. It’s easier to uphold the sign that says “we have the right to refuse service” against mobile phone yappers than it is to charge them more money.

  36. metzb22 says:

    Awesome! I would do the same if I had a restaurant or other similar establishment.

  37. bearfan says:

    I wish they had this rule everywhere. I am so sick of people on their fucking phones 24/7. People need to get a life, and get off their stinking phones!