June 21, 2013 Restaurant Bans Kids Under 18: Agree or Disagree?
The Sushi Bar, a restaurant in Alexandria, Virginia has made a pretty big statement: “no one under 18 years of age is allowed.” While many other restaurants around the country simply create an atmosphere and price range that is not exactly family friendly, The Sushi Bar has made their intentions clear. Owner Mike Anderson, who actually has three children of his own, likes to see his restaurant as a place to give tired parents a break for a night. He also appeals to young professionals looking for a fun and relaxed place to unwind and enjoy some sake bombs.
We thought, “These poor parents—they’re helicopter parents, God love ’em—they’re always doing this and that with their kids, and we thought, they need a break.”
While thoughts on whether or not banning children is a good idea, there are clear pros and cons for both the restaurants and the customers to having an 18 and up establishment.
- Never worry about complaints over screaming and misbehaved children.
- Adults can drink and have a good time without having to sensor themselves for young ears.
- Restaurants don’t have to invest in children’s menus, high chairs or changing tables.
- Parents who need a break won’t have to stress about other children on their “night off.”
- Families with well-behaved children may be alienated and upset that they cannot dine out due to other parents who don’t control their kids. These feelings may sway them to choose another restaurant on their date night out (without kids).
- Babysitters are not always easy to come by, so many parents choose to take their kids on a nice dinner outing when one is not available
- Many families with young teens may feel alienated, as teens are generally well behaved and would rather participate in a family dinner than stay at home.
- Families that can’t afford a babysitter would not be able to eat at this restaurant.
- This restaurant may get a reputation for being too uptight or exclusive and therefore alienating some of their target audience.
These are merely a few examples around this restaurant’s age-restricting concept. However, the real question is if this is actually a good idea for Mike Anderson or any other restaurant owner to implement.
What are your thoughts? Do you agree or disagree with this concept?
33 ways to create customer loyalty
The ultimate guide for owners & managers.