TLC for bartering restaurants

There are a couple reasons why barter restaurants need special care. For one thing, absolutely everyone has to eat.  That means they can potentially trade with anyone which makes them very valuable in your barter network. Also because food cost percentages are are usually around 30 percent they have significant cash costs. The last little twist to make things complicated is that you are paying their staff directly in part through your tip.

So…with all that in mind, I have a couple suggestions to keep on your favorite restaurant’s good side and hopefully keep them bartering for a long time.

1) Be nice
If there is a mix-up about when they accept barter as payment, be nice. Gracefully pay in cash and talk to the owner later. When you talk to him/her, don’t complain. Express how much you like their restaurant and that you called because you want to help their business.

2) Leave enough cash
Most resaurants need the tax and tip to be paid in cash. When I dine on barter I make a special effort as an embassador for barter to be a good tipper. In most areas tax is somewhere around 10% and a good tip is 20% so you are doing good if you leave about 30% cash.

3) Post on yelp
It’s in your best interest for your favorite restaurants to stay profitable so do what you can to help them. Besides recommending the restaurant to your friends you can also recommend it to strangers. You can do this by finding the restaurant on yelp.com and posting a glowing review. For those of you with smart phones you can download a free Yelp app to make this faster.

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