One-shopper dining offers

It is often impossible to find a companion to go to a lunch or dinner shop with a mystery shopper for a shop that requires two people. Adults are so busy with their own interests. You would think a free meal for a companion would be a great offer. Why don't the mystery shopper companies let just the mystery shopper go to the nicer restaurants without the requirement to bring another person? You are not paying the second person anything and you are taking their time. Often if the shopper is alone the server or the bartender will talk to the shopper and tell the mystery shopper different things about working at that particular establishment.

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There are some MSCs who allow a single diner. Try Reality Based Group or Mercantile.

It's not the companies, it's their clients. The clients have specific requirements and the MSCs have to abide by their wishes, obviously.
There is one MSC out there that does "eat at the bar" where you go alone. They also have two people shops at the same restaurant chain. The reimbursement is more for the two person shop..
A typical customer at one of those places would dine with someone, not alone. The clients want shoppers to appear as typical customers in most instances. If you were to dine alone and the waiter chatted with you more because of that, you would not have the experience of a typical customer. That said, I would love it if more dining shops could be done alone. In general, one would have fewer suitable dining companions for a restaurant mystery shop than for a regular meal out.
LSUFan, There are some MSCs that require the shopper to dine alone.

MSF, That is an opinion of yesteryear. Today, it is quite common for professionals to dine alone. People are far more likely travel extensively than they once did. Moreover, it is not just on-the-road that individuals dine alone. People are far more likely to not have either significant others or dates than they once did. The problem is that because wait staff earn based on the amount of the meal rather than being paid principally for their time, they are less happy to serve the single eater. Restaurants also prefer not to cater to the single diner as with only one person at a table, the restaurant's revenue per square foot is less than it would be if two people occupied the same table.
Being male, I have noticed more men dining alone than females. In that the majority of shoppers are women, perhaps that also influences client decisions, as they feel a gal occupying a table or booth by herself would standout.
I rarely see the higher priced restaurants with single diners in Los Angeles. I agree this would not represent the average patron. Single diners seem to be more common in the mid priced and lower priced places in my large metropolis. As for finding a companion, among my friends and family it is much more likely they would want to go with me if their dinner was covered by the msc. rather than using their credit card.
I complete NUMEROUS hotel valet shops at high end hotels with pricey restaurants inside. I regularly go to the restaurant (by myself) and have an app or side dish while working.
These are some of the same restaurants that I shop with a guest for Coyle... I am not the only one by myself either. In Chicago I regularly see business travelers/ professionals eating alone.

With that said it's all about what the client wants, even if it doesn't make sense.

Servimer Regional Manager- Midwest, including Chicago, Wisconsin & Minnesota
I have to disagree with OP...I have eaten alone for years, yes some require two (upscale), but good casual allow one person. I work for three companies and do their shops alone, doing one tonight and will get enough food for two. The OP needs to search for new MSC's, like Mercantile or the Source.,,,your welcome.

Create a life that feels good on the inside, not one that just looks good on the outside.....
Dr. Judith Wright
@luckygirl0100 wrote:

I complete NUMEROUS hotel valet shops at high end hotels with pricey restaurants inside. I regularly go to the restaurant (by myself) and have an app or side dish while working.
These are some of the same restaurants that I shop with a guest for Coyle... I am not the only one by myself either. In Chicago I regularly see business travelers/ professionals eating alone.

With that said it's all about what the client wants, even if it doesn't make sense.

I would agree. A high end hotel based restaurant is much more likely to have single diners than one out in a neighborhood.
Many business woman travel for work alone, and eat at the restaurant they stay in. I did a high end hotel restaurant alone and they asked me what kind of magazine I'd like while waiting....they definitely cater to woman alone, after all, it is 2018 and more woman are in college than men...just sayin.

Create a life that feels good on the inside, not one that just looks good on the outside.....
Dr. Judith Wright
After my post, which was predicated upon what I would notice in a casual eatery, I stand corrected with respect to women alone. In my entire life of slightly more than 3/4 century, I have never eaten, as a paying customer, in a fine dining restaurant. Out of curiosity, I did complete two such shops 12 years ago and quickly knew that, for me, the report time far exceeded the value received.
A Closer Look often allows me to go solo when my husband and friends are unavailable. I just email the scheduler to ask.
Many of A Closer Look's casual restaurant shops allow for a single diner and the guidelines address smaller ordering requirements if dining alone. I think all the fine dining require a guest, but I've dined alone for several ACL clients. Of course, most of the ACL shops are still reimbursement only, which is fine with me as long as I want the food the client serves. If I don't really like the food and there is no fee, I wouldn't be motivated to do the shop. Actually, even if there is a fee, I wouldn't be motivated to do a restaurant shop where I didn't want the food,.
funny thing about the fine dining shops vs the casual shops. I find over half of the fine dining shops with bar visit will not cover an average 2 patron meal. I mean if it's given fining dining is alacarte and each orders an appitizer, an entree, a side, and a dessert and then add in tax, 20% graturity, and a $15 one drink bar visit, well I would have gone over each and every time the reembursement plus the pay. then if it's in the tourist part of town where most fine dining is, there's parking to pay for and no valet service. casual dining I think they try to have enough for 2, but 80% of the time, I go alone, so there's plenty of reenbursement for a really big meal just for one. sometimes I get 2 appetizers and/or a soup, plus an entree and dessert. I think it would be ok with them because I'm truly rating each dish and sometimes required to provide a picture of eaach.
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