Fewer reservations = better business?

Fewer reservations = better business?

restaurant with tables and pos system

No.

You didn’t hear us wrong.

You should never take enough bookings in a restaurant to fill all the tables.

And I hear you say, hold on, you’re saying that shouldn’t ensure our restaurant is busy and booked up?

Well, sort of!

So, it's a busy Saturday evening...

8PM let’s say.

You’ve taken back to back bookings to keep the restaurant filled to bursting for the peak times. Pat yourself on the back! Or not?

This sounds counter-intuitive but you’ve got to think, by ensuring that the restaurant is booked up in advance, on whom am I missing out?

Yes, you got it, the walk-in trade!

You get a party of 6 walking in and have to send them away!


In a busy restaurant, you must make efforts to accommodate the walk-in traffic.

Constantly filling up your busy periods with reservations is bad practice for a few reasons!

We’ll list them below but to summarise, it can affect repeat business especially during less busy periods, so you must be careful!

restaurant with tables and pos system

Why should I leave space for walk-ins during busy periods?

  1. Pre-booked tables are not always guaranteed to turn up
  2. By refusing walk-in business constantly it does not create goodwill
  3. This consequently affects traffic in less busy periods

So what should you do?

To alleviate these issues, try and keep between 30-40% of your seating available for walk-in customers during busy periods.

The exceptions to this are special occasions where you would expect more people to make bookings in advance.

Having this capacity for walk-in trade means that you will not be turning away walk-ins during the peak times whilst at the same time filling up the restaurant for the less busy period, by asking the customers that call for reservations to come in either side of the peak times.

How can eatPOS EPOS help?

The eatPOS EPOS built-in booking module app allows you to take and manage bookings easily through the EPOS system, allowing you to manage everything from one location.

Get in touch today to discuss by clicking here or give us a call on 0116 380 0299 and revolutionise your till system today with a better restaurant POS, restaurant EPOS solution.