Which century should I do this shop in?

Okay, so I opened the email because it is a trendy restaurant in my town so I thought it might be a great mystery shop job. It is rated $$-$$$. The $$ is probably because you can get small items like a cup of soup or a muffin for $4-5. Then I read the following:

Reimbursement of $25 total for you and one guest
Avoid the highest price entrees like lobster or expensive steaks.

Well, fortunately they do not seem to have lobster on their menu. Unfortunately for $25 including tip, tax and the 3% extra added to every bill so the restaurant can afford to give their servers health insurance $25 would only be a down payment on a meal for two in 2018.

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Typically, when it isn't full reimbursement, the MSC doesn't want professional shoppers. They want people who would normally go to the restaurant and are offering basically a rebate to also complete a shop. It's not intended to attract profit-seeking shoppers.
I was always curious about the TX Roadhouse shops that offer a $25 reimbursement for two people.
@hotsauce1 wrote:

I was always curious about the TX Roadhouse shops that offer a $25 reimbursement for two people.

Actually, the $25 TX Roadhouse shops are bar shops for one person, although you can take someone with you. One person can have a drink and eat quite a lot for $25 at TX Roadhouse. TX Roadhouse also has a dining room shop that reimburses $35 for two (or more, if you choose). The $35 is usually enough for me and another person to eat and stay under $35, including tip, and I'm kind of a big eater and I usually tip well.
Yes, I do the bar shops for one person for $25. I don't do the $35 one for two people because my husband and I do generally spend more. You can get away with it if you order midrange menu items, but I am partial to their ribeye steaks, LOL.
@hotsauce1 wrote:

I was always curious about the TX Roadhouse shops that offer a $25 reimbursement for two people.

$35. For people curious on how to pre-calculate menu prices to aim for, $35 / (1 + 15% for tip and 8% for tax) = $28.45 pre-tip and pre-tax. That’s easily doable for a dinner for two, especially if you stick to just waters.

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 28 year old male and willing to travel! Badged for Denver International Airport.
My husband and I order a small steak or ribs, their burgers are good, their Road kill is a shopped sirloin, with cheese and peppers, delicious. We both get a baked potato with sour cream, a salad, and two Coors 20 oz beers. (this is their sale beer, they don't tell you, their add on's cost money also.)
The cost is $38 dollars, I don't mind the additional few dollars. We enjoy just eating there about once a month or two.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/2018 04:22PM by shopper8.
@TroyHawkins wrote:

Typically, when it isn't full reimbursement, the MSC doesn't want professional shoppers. They want people who would normally go to the restaurant and are offering basically a rebate to also complete a shop. It's not intended to attract profit-seeking shoppers.

100% agree. Before I take any dining visit for the 1st time, I ALWAYS go to the dining place's site and check out the menu and see how the reimbursement limit fits in with what I have to get for the shop. Usually it is good enough to take it. But not 100% of the time. Like you said, I REFUSE to do a shop where I am "out of pocket" - and then have to do the report, too. I have gone over the limit a few times but because I chose to do so not because I had to do so. As long as people take these kinds of visits, MSCs will continue to offer them - no reason not to do so. The people who takes these visits are also the same ones who do the Jack in the Box ones for $8 and do a full audit with pix and all - for $9 when it takes 2+ hours to do it. Good for them. Take these crappy visits all you want - leave the good ones for me since these shoppers are doing low pay/high work jobs.
Somehow, I was under the impression that as a new shopper I had to take "crappy visits" in order to receive better, higher paying ones. Is this accurate? Thanks!
@lorijordan wrote:

Somehow, I was under the impression that as a new shopper I had to take "crappy visits" in order to receive better, higher paying ones. Is this accurate? Thanks!

NO. NO way!

The only thing I would say is: For MSC that operate on SASSIE - your default rating is a 5. All new shoppers are a 5 until they do their first shop. Most MSC will not let the decent shops be done by anyone unless they are at least an 8, maybe 9. For MSC like this, you need to basically take just about ANY visit they have that you can do so you can get off of a 5 and go to a 9+ in your rating. Don't take crappy visits just to get one but in order to get off the 5 you do need to do something so take something you might not normally do just to get 1 shop in the system and get to a 9+ so now you can do more than without it
@SoCalDude wrote:

@TroyHawkins wrote:

Typically, when it isn't full reimbursement, the MSC doesn't want professional shoppers. They want people who would normally go to the restaurant and are offering basically a rebate to also complete a shop. It's not intended to attract profit-seeking shoppers.

100% agree. Before I take any dining visit for the 1st time, I ALWAYS go to the dining place's site and check out the menu and see how the reimbursement limit fits in with what I have to get for the shop. ..

Yes and that is exactly what I did in this case. The restaurant is The Larder which is a trendy chain. On the menu a burger is $16, most sandwiches are in the 12-16 range. I cannot see the ordering requirements but in my experience with these sit down nice places they usually require a drink and appetizer too. For $25 you cannot eat there for one let alone two if that is what they expect. It is sad if they are thinking this is a $25 off coupon...Tax here is 10% plus 3% to the server for health care plus a 15% tip leaves you with a $19 reimbursement. It is a shame that The Larder, perhaps unknowingly, which is a very nice place, has hired a company that will give them non professional shoppers. Perhaps they knew what they were getting for their money. My employer (a major non profit hospital) hired a mystery shop company last year for phone call shops and then ended up cancelling the contract as the info was useless. They should have asked me first!! but they have no idea I am a shopper. Wasted money that could have helped defray some of the high costs of medical care.
There are other platforms for which it might make sense to do a few stinkers..... On some platforms, you need to complete a certain number of shops before you gain certain self-assign privileges (iSS).... Some MSC's won't to assign you higher end shops until you have established yourself as a reliable shopper. (I had brief exchanges with schedulers for both Ath and HS Brands about this.)

I read about the Maldives shops mentioned in another thread... I can't imagine an MSC assigning somebody to those shops with whom they did not have an established relationship....Of course, if you blunder on a shop and find your rating suddenly dropped, it might make sense to do a couple of easy stinkers to boost it.

That said, I would **never** do a shop that is likely to pay me much under minimum wage after reimbursement.


@SoCalDude wrote:

@lorijordan wrote:

Somehow, I was under the impression that as a new shopper I had to take "crappy visits" in order to receive better, higher paying ones. Is this accurate? Thanks!

NO. NO way!

The only thing I would say is: For MSC that operate on SASSIE - your default rating is a 5. All new shoppers are a 5 until they do their first shop. Most MSC will not let the decent shops be done by anyone unless they are at least an 8, maybe 9. For MSC like this, you need to basically take just about ANY visit they have that you can do so you can get off of a 5 and go to a 9+ in your rating. Don't take crappy visits just to get one but in order to get off the 5 you do need to do something so take something you might not normally do just to get 1 shop in the system and get to a 9+ so now you can do more than without it

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
@MFJohnston wrote:

There are other platforms for which it might make sense to do a few stinkers..... On some platforms, you need to complete a certain number of shops before you gain certain self-assign privileges (iSS).... Some MSC's won't to assign you higher end shops until you have established yourself as a reliable shopper. (I had brief exchanges with schedulers for both Ath and HS Brands about this.)

I read about the Maldives shops mentioned in another thread... I can't imagine an MSC assigning somebody to those shops with whom they did not have an established relationship....Of course, if you blunder on a shop and find your rating suddenly dropped, it might make sense to do a couple of easy stinkers to boost it.

That said, I would **never** do a shop that is likely to pay me much under minimum wage after reimbursement.


@SoCalDude wrote:

@lorijordan wrote:

Somehow, I was under the impression that as a new shopper I had to take "crappy visits" in order to receive better, higher paying ones. Is this accurate? Thanks!

NO. NO way!

The only thing I would say is: For MSC that operate on SASSIE - your default rating is a 5. All new shoppers are a 5 until they do their first shop. Most MSC will not let the decent shops be done by anyone unless they are at least an 8, maybe 9. For MSC like this, you need to basically take just about ANY visit they have that you can do so you can get off of a 5 and go to a 9+ in your rating. Don't take crappy visits just to get one but in order to get off the 5 you do need to do something so take something you might not normally do just to get 1 shop in the system and get to a 9+ so now you can do more than without it
My husband and I aren't big eaters, we usually get the 6 oz Sirloins at Roadhouse and he just gets water and I go non-alcoholic. Still, including tip we usually go over $35.00. If we could shop during their early-bird hours we wouldn't have a problem because it's a dollar cheaper each but for the 2 person shop they can't be done before 6. But we love to eat at Roadhouse so it's worth it for us. I have done one of the bar shops by myself and I did enjoy that too even though I'm not really a drinker.

What's done is done. An egg cracked cannot be cured.
There are 3 kinds of lies. Lies, Damn lies, and statistics.
@sassymmmm wrote:

My husband and I aren't big eaters, we usually get the 6 oz Sirloins at Roadhouse and he just gets water and I go non-alcoholic. Still, including tip we usually go over $35.00. If we could shop during their early-bird hours we wouldn't have a problem because it's a dollar cheaper each but for the 2 person shop they can't be done before 6. But we love to eat at Roadhouse so it's worth it for us. I have done one of the bar shops by myself and I did enjoy that too even though I'm not really a drinker.

If you go on Tuesdays, you get the early bird pricing 4PM-10PM, so on Tuesdays you can save that dollar. Wednesday is Wild West Wednesday and the medium size steak is on sale for the same price as the small steak.
@sandyf wrote:

The restaurant is The Larder which is a trendy chain. On the menu a burger is $16, most sandwiches are in the 12-16 range.

Take the one at LAX from a different MSC. Better reimbursement, you can go alone and order anything you want....makes a great pre-flight meal!
Mod note: Misquote removed

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)
@SteveSoCal wrote:

@sandyf wrote:

The restaurant is The Larder which is a trendy chain. On the menu a burger is $16, most sandwiches are in the 12-16 range.

Take the one at LAX from a different MSC. Better reimbursement, you can go alone and order anything you want....makes a great pre-flight meal!

Too much work for too little pay my dear. I quit doing those after awhile.
The scheduler for Texas Roadhouse sends out a billion emails an hour. I self assigned one thinking it was a bar shop and it was a restaurant. When I asked her to reassign it, she said that I could do the shop solo.

The internet doesn't make you smart. It makes you good at regurgitation.
Solo I would not take this shop at the Larder for $25 reimbursement but as I said perhaps if the menu had prices from a different century it would be worthwhile with a $25 reimbursement.
We do not have Texas Roadhouse shops where I live but all the tips about going during happy hour or when there are specials or double points if they have a rewards card are ones I use all the time.
I think I will leave the Larder on the table. I am not interested even to ask if I can go solo although based on the msc advertising this shop it is probably a simple report.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/11/2018 04:41PM by sandyf.
@iShop123 wrote:

@TroyHawkins wrote:

=====[/B]

Fixed it for you.

Nah. You fixed nothing. Tacky. What a disappointment.
Really? Grow up. I made no comment about an individual person, but only how stupid it was to take them.

Seriously, nobody cares that you're offended.

(Yes, I stole Hoju's tagline.)
It wasn't your negativity or your comment that disturbed anyone. It was that you quoted another forum member, changing the quote and attributing your own negativity to him. If you want to make negative statements and "fix" what others say, man up and take responsibility for your own negativity. "Fix" other forum members's comments without making it look like they said it.
@TroyHawkins wrote:

Typically, when it isn't full reimbursement, the MSC doesn't want professional shoppers. They want people who would normally go to the restaurant and are offering basically a rebate to also complete a shop. It's not intended to attract profit-seeking shoppers.

Professional, profit-seeking shoppers also do not take shops that are fully reimbursement and no fee.
I do reimbursement shops when they are easy and cover all or most of the meal. That's food I didn't have to buy or prepare and dishes I didn't have to do. Today I did a carryout pizza restaurant shop that reimbursed $40. I got a huge gourmet salad and extra-large specialty pizza that was delicious, and we can get several meals out of it. And I am a professional, profit seeking shopper. The report took about 35 minutes. Well worth my time.
Actually what IShop123 did there is commonly used on many forums, often for humor. By including the comment, "fixed it for you," he or she did take responsibility. The comment made it abundantly clear.

@roflwofl wrote:

It wasn't your negativity or your comment that disturbed anyone. It was that you quoted another forum member, changing the quote and attributing your own negativity to him. If you want to make negative statements and "fix" what others say, man up and take responsibility for your own negativity. "Fix" other forum members's comments without making it look like they said it.

Equal rights for others does not mean fewer rights for you. It's not pie.
"I prefer someone who burns the flag and then wraps themselves up in the Constitution over someone who burns the Constitution and then wraps themselves up in the flag." -Molly Ivins
Never try to teach a pig to sing. It's a waste of your time and it really annoys the pig.
@Rousseau wrote:

Professional, profit-seeking shoppers also do not take shops that are fully reimbursement and no fee.

If I am out on a route and need a meal, I'll look for a restaurant shop - even if it's only reimbursement only. If I have the time, I figure that it reduces my expenses and improves the bottom line.

Hard work builds character and homework is good for your soul.
@hotsauce1 wrote:

I was always curious about the TX Roadhouse shops that offer a $25 reimbursement for two people.

I've had the pleasure to do the $25 belly up to the bar, which only requires 1 person and the dining shop for $35 with 2 people.

Both are a good value, depending on what you order from the menu.

Belly up the bar rocks my world when I have a huge day and I'm always by myself. I've never spent more than $6 on the bely up or the dining in shops including tip.

Live your life in such a way that when your feet hit the floor in the morning; the devil shudders...And yells OH #%*+! SHE'S AWAKE!
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