Even though it’s no different than other forms of theft, it can sometimes be difficult to get the authorities worked up about a restaurant customer who skips out on a meal without paying. But some restaurant owners are having success with getting these dine-and-dash scofflaws to pay up by publicly shaming them on social media.
KDFW-TV in Texas has the story of one Fort Worth-area eatery that is realizing it can use social media both to promote the business and to call out bad consumers.
Over the weekend, it posted surveillance photos of a customer who had just dined at the restaurant with his family. In the images, he’s standing by the register, acting like he’s going to pay… all before he pockets his bill and exits without paying.
The Facebook post asking the man to please make good on his debt drew a lot of attention.
“We had 42,000 views, 300 shares and 200 comments,” the restaurant’s owner tells KDFW.
And the plan worked, with the customer coming back in to pay the bill he’d skipped out on a few days earlier.
Last year, we brought you a similar story of a Reno, NV, restaurant that Facebook-shamed (with a little help from local media) a dine-and-dasher into paying his $100 dinner bill.
While the restaurant got its money, things didn’t go so well for the bill-skipper, who was subsequently arrested on a probation violation.