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Order & Pay apps – Are they the future?

The pub industry is evolving. With Wetherspoons having rolled out an Order & Pay app feature at many of their sites, the success of the feature could result in other venues to offer their own features.





Before we discuss the positives and negatives of such a system, what exactly is the Order & Pay app?

The premise is simple, download the Wetherspoons Order & Pay app to your phone or device and when you are in a venue that supports it you can use the app to order your items of choice as well as pay for the order on your phone.

You then simply wait for the order to be delivered to your table, removing the need to queue at a busy bar or try to remember what everyone wanted.

But what do people think of the system? We asked a handful of people to give their thoughts on the way it works and whether they’d like to see it have more of a presence.

Christopher Neil said, “As a visually impaired person, it would be really useful for me as it can be difficult to read the paper version of a menu, as well as struggling to see said person at the bar! The issue for me is the fact it can “restrict” fussy orders but generally it’s a good thing.”

In fact, a few people told us that their main concern would be clarifying specific changes to orders, whether it be removing salad or serving a drink with no ice that could potentially be overlooked ordering on an app.

There is also the technical side of the app and whether it could be used under high demand or at peak times.

When asked his thoughts on the app, Michael Gane said, “Depending on the kind of building, mobile data can often be poor to non-existent. This means you have to 100% rely on wi-fi to successfully place an order and make payment.”

There’s also the concern of bar staff training, would bar staff be able to distinguish between the orders made via phone and the orders made in person? At peak times, when lots of people are ordering, would it be easy to lose track of orders?

Andrea Price had this to say, “I think it could cause some frustration at the bar unless there are dedicated bar staff who do not deal with app orders. Imagine standing at the bar with no-one in front of you but the barman is too busy dealing with electronic orders to deal with you.”

In general, the consensus was that the app is a great idea but majorly depends on how it is implemented and how accessible it is both for bar staff and for the customer.

Have you used an Order & Pay app? What are your thoughts? We’d love to hear from you! If you have any experience using this or have a story to share be sure to contact us either by email, phone or through our website or Twitter!

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