Like it, want it, order it: Digital dining of the future
New Quarterly Dining Trends Report from Bookatable reveals Brit’s expectations for the future of dining
– 2 out of 5 Brits (40 per cent) would use technology to optimise their dining experience, such as choosing the exact time meals are served
– Nearly half of us (42 per cent) would use technology to pick the precise restaurant table we sit at before arriving at the venue
A fifth of UK food lovers (20 per cent) would opt to pay and order meals more efficiently by using mobile payment services
The modern “want it now, get it now” culture is establishing itself in the world of dining. Insights from the Quarterly Dining Trends Report from Bookatable, Europe’s largest restaurant booking platform, reveal that Brits prefer a faster, more flexible way of dining, using technology and digital advances to personalise our dining experience.
The report reveals that personalisation is a key focus for Brits dining out, with almost half (47 per cent) expecting to curate their entire dining experience in the not so distant future. Everything from choosing a restaurant table before they arrive (43 per cent), to selecting the background music (16 per cent), and having access to live cameras in the kitchens and bars (18 per cent) were among some of the future dining predictions.
|BRITS’ DINING ESSENTIALS FOR THE FUTURE OF DINING|
|Personal and attentive service||71%|
|Digitally divided bills between large groups||39%|
|Using technology to choose a seat before entering the restaurant||42%|
|Previewing portion size via technology such as hologram / plate projection||24%|
|Efficient mobile ordering & payment options||20%|
Tech-savvy, time poor Brits are looking to streamline dining processes with more efficient ‘fast-track’ and pre-booking options when organising their evening out. Diners looking for a speedier service seek time saving tools, like choosing the specific time slots meals will be served (40 per cent) and the ability to order additional items off the menu via a mobile app (18 per cent). Although avid foodies welcome digital advances, we still consider restaurants that offer a personal service from staff (71 per cent) as an imperative factor when deciding where to dine out.
Instant gratification is central for diners looking to personalise their eating out experience, and restaurants tapping into technology are more likely to help guests achieve this. In just five years’ time, almost a quarter (24 per cent) of Brits would like a preview of portion size, ingredients used (21 per cent), and the presentation (22 per cent) of a dish shown via technology such as hologram projection or mobile app. While, more adventurous eaters (15 per cent) may be more inclined to try dishes before committing by ordering 3D printed meal samples.
Despite almost a quarter of Brits (23 per cent) noticing a shift in restaurants embracing technology, in the future, loyal diners returning to restaurants would like to breeze through settling the bill with more efficient payment options. 39 per cent would like the bill automatically split between larger groups, 24 per cent would prefer to pay using a digital dining card (a restaurant equivalent of an Oyster card) and 20 per cent of us would opt for simple mobile payment such as EasyPreOrders, which enables customers to pre-order and pre-pay for the meal booked through the Bookatable app at the end of the night – which means no manual calculating, no arguing over the bill and no hassle.
Bookatable’s Quarterly Dining Trends Report shows that 15 per cent of food lovers would like to receive mobile alerts of nearby places of interest based on the restaurant they’ve recently eaten at. A further one in five (21 per cent) Brits agree restaurants should look further to incorporate additional digital technology into the dining experience, proving that restaurants are going to have to adapt and evolve to keep up with digital-savvy diners of today.
Joe Steele, CEO of Bookatable commented: “More and more restaurants are looking to elevate the customer experience with convenience being at the forefront of future innovation. We can definitely see a shift in how restaurants are using technology, including one of the valuable elements of the Bookatable app which features a pay-at-table option, offering diners faster service and essentially granting them more time to enjoy their meal”.
Over 50 per cent of Bookatable’s reservations across 15,000 restaurants in the UK are now booked through mobile devices, 93% up from two years ago. Mobile transactions have undoubtedly become more popular through apps such as Apple pay, Paypal and Flypay, offering consumers that added convenience at the touch of a button.
Restaurants are certainly embracing digital dining, by incorporating technological elements into the eating out experience. One such restaurant is Bookatable partner, Inamo, one of London’s original digital restaurants that offer everything from interactive touchscreen tables (that can order you a cab) to personalised décor and lighting with a swipe of a finger.
Noel Hunwick, Owner of Tech-inspired Pan Asian restaurant Inamo, comments: “Inamo is leading the way in restaurant innovation, offering diners a personalised and unique eating experience with fewer interruptions from waiters than any traditional restaurant around. Our modern approach and tech-enabled tables allow diners to order their food, set the mood, discover the local neighbourhood, play games, and even request the bill, on their terms. As partners of Bookatable, we’re conscious of the ever changing needs of our guests, which is why we are always looking for ways technology can enhance and improve their eating experience.”