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Restaurant Loses Credit Card


JLK
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Last night, a restaurant lost my significant other's credit card. After dining with another couple, he slipped his credit card on the sly to our server, trying to treat the three of us to dinner. The server (or one of her colleagues) processed the charge, but somewhere between that moment and the moment the leather folder with our bill and his card should have been brought to our table, the card was lost (the bill was not).

I'm actually surprised that this sort of thing doesn't happen more frequently. In all of my restaurant meals (and lately, I'm dining out at least four times per week), this has never happened. Still, I obviously wish they'd handled the card more carefully.

How do you think this situation should have been handled? I'm curious to know and would like to hear the opinions of the peanut gallery before posting about our experience. Right now, I'm not altogether satisfied (I'd give the restaurant manager about a 4 on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being top marks).

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Jennifer,

Sorry to hear that this happened! What did the restaurant staff and/or manager actually do?

I think you're being very generous in saying the credit card was "lost." My first thought was that it was possibly pilfered by someone, not necessarily your server or even someone employed by the restaurant.

I would hope that the manager would facilitate your SO's immediate reporting of the missing card to the credit card company, there, on the spot.

I am not blaming the restaurant in suggesting that a police report should have been filed as soon as possible--that can help reduce the card holder's responsibility for unauthorized charges. I would give the manager high marks if he or she actually called the police or assisted in the filing of a report.

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They had several staff members looking all around the various tables. No one found it, and no transactions other than the two for our dinner were made which leads me to believe it slipped into some crevice near the cash register/computer terminal.

What bugged my SO more than anything else is that the manager wasn't particularly apologetic. He was like, "Oh, sorry. We'll call you if we find it." If the shoe were on the other foot, and it was one of us who lost our credit card and couldn't pay, I'm sure there would have been more emotion. <_<

After the lame apology, we all just sat there looking at him in disbelief. Not much of an apology for the hassle SO is going through canceling the card, setting up all of his banking (it was a checkcard that was lost) arrangements, protecting his account from fraud. No offer to file a police report. Only him handing us the bill and would SO please sign the credit card slip.

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Well, on a scale of 1-10 for the manager's response, I'd score it a 1.

The card was in the possession of the restaurant (or one of its employees) when it went missing. At best, the restaurant was not meeting its responsibility of securing such an important item. Very disappointing!

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Not to be a PITA, but if someone lost my card (esp. a checkcard) that they JUST SWIPED, I would tear up the CC slip, and insist that they void my charge. I would then ask them to wait while I cancelled my card. I would then ask the manager to bring me the void. Then I would pay my bill. If there were any unpleasntness fron management during this process, I would insist that the police be called and a report filed. I would assume that the manager would not want the police called, and would try to smooth things out. It's very easy for the restaurant to just run a void, and start over with another card-but by the time you go home and call your bank, your CC Number could be used numerous times. It's happened to me where my CC Number was captured at a gas station, and by the time I got home, $3000 had been drained from my account. Not saying anything nefarious happened here, but I wouldn't be surprised.

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The only time in my life I've had fraudulent charges was when I accidentally left my card at M. Gettier in Baltimore (Michael Gettier is now chef at Antrim 1844 in the Dred-fully named Taneytown), and by the time I figured out it was gone, $2,000 in charges were racked up at Macy's.

In the manager's defense, it was prime-time Saturday night, and he was probably taken off-guard by your SOS (significant-other's situation) - sometimes choking in the heat-of-the-moment can be mistaken for indifference.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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In the end, the manager somewhat grudgingly cut our rather small bill in half. We did not ask for a comp, but were rather surprised when nothing was offered. Adding insult to injury, the restaurant appears to have neglected to void the first charge (a call will be made) so he was charged for our dinner and a half. <_<

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In the end, the manager somewhat grudgingly cut our rather small bill in half.  We did not ask for a comp, but were rather surprised when nothing was offered.  Adding insult to injury, the restaurant appears to have neglected to void the first charge (a call will be made) so he was charged for our dinner and a half.  ;)

it may not be that the first charge was not voided. it is rather common, especially with check cards, that when an authorization is made it places a hold on those funds until the charge is finalized. once that hold has been placed, if the charges are voided, it takes a day or two for that hold to drop off.

funny how banks are rather adept at taking funds instantly, but putting them back seems to takes some time <_<

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