What Guests Love and Don’t About Dining in the New Normal

2020 has been a year for the foodservice industry. Restaurants and food businesses are reopening, under very strict regulation. The CDC has listed dining out as high-risk. Yet, many guests are still dining out, especially in major cities such as NYC. We asked a few food enthusiasts how they feel about dining out and even ordering in during the Covid-19 pandemic. Here is what they had to say:


“One thing I actually like about dining out now is the space you get. I don’t feel like we’re on top of each other or so close to the next table, which is important, because you know, COVID. For take out, I’m convinced the crab legs and seafood places give us more than when we eat in!” – Jolene


“Dining out? Nope, won’t do it. For delivery or take out, when I do, I like the organization, mobile updates, and quick transactions. What I like least is I can’t stop thinking I am about to get COVID, and the shorter hours. I don’t like that not everywhere properly packs food for transport.” – Abdul


“I like that it feels special to sit down to eat somewhere again. I like that it seems as though people are treating servers more seriously. I like that I can have a quick conversation with a person three tables away that doesn’t result in some drunk at a bar next to me telling me his life story while I’m just trying to suck down jalapeno poppers. I like that servers can be heroes too. I don’t like that I feel like a health criminal every time I go out for food. I don’t like feeling like I’m bringing disease back to my family. I don’t like that more places aren’t doing Family Meal Deals—It’s a genius business model and costs you next to nothing to create” – Andrew


“I love actually love the mask, I’ve always hated being around people coughing and sneezing. Food comes out faster and everything seems cleaner. The cons for me are that the food quality at some of my favorite restaurants has gone down. There is less or no wait staff at some places, and feeling the ambiance of a restaurant seems to be gone at some spots.” – Nicholas


“I like going out because I like al fresco dining, which is much more abundant now. I go out because I like the feeling of normalcy it brings to this whole crazy year, seeing humans again, and feeling the ambiance in restaurants. At certain places it can be difficult to get a seat, so I like how you can order ahead for pick up, and eat there if they have available seats. It’s like being at a restaurant without the wait. I don’t like that so much is now served in plastic.” – Anna


“I would say I like the inconveniences least – like when you have to go to the bathroom, remembering to put on a mask. But I feel like the staff at places is working harder, so I appreciate that, and tip better because of it. – Zach

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