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OpenTable is no longer just for making a dinner reservation; it’s for paying the bill. The reservation giant launched a new feature in D.C. on its iPhone app today (coming soon for Android) that allows diners to see their orders on their smartphones and pay with a few taps, rather than waiting around for and signing a paper check.
Diners can only pay using the app if they used OpenTable to make a reservation, so it won’t work for walk-ins. One other drawback: You can’t split the check, but Senior VP of Marketing Scott Jampol says the company is working to add that feature in the coming months.
Mobile-payment apps have been slow to catch on in restaurants. Some coffee shops and food trucks use Square Wallet, but you won’t find it at many sit-down restaurants. TabbedOut allows diners or bargoers to track and pay for their tabs, but only a handful of places, like The Hamilton and Nellie’s Sports Bar, use it. Meanwhile, chains like Sweetgreen and Cava Mezze Grill have their own white-label payment apps, but you need to scan your phone to use them.
OpenTable, though, has a real chance at making paying for dinner via smartphone the norm. Not only is it free for both users and restaurants (at least the ones that already use OpenTable), but hundreds of thousands of D.C.-area diners already have the OpenTable app. The payment system was first piloted in San Francisco in February and launched in New York last month. It will roll out in 20 more cities by the end of the year. Only 20 D.C.-area restaurants are offering the service to start, and more will be added on a regular basis.
Check out which restaurants are piloting the service below.
· Aggio – Washington, D.C. · Chef Geoff’s Rockville – Rockville, Maryland · Chef Geoff’s Tyson’s – Vienna, Virginia · Copper Canyon Grill – Silver Spring – Silver Spring, Maryland · Del Campo – Washington, D.C. · Family Meal – Frederick, Maryland · Georgia Brown’s – Washington, D.C. · J. Paul’s – Georgetown – Washington, D.C. · Jaleo Crystal City – Arlington, Virginia · La Caraqueña Latin America Cuisine – Falls Church, Virginia · LIA’S – Chevy Chase, Maryland · Lincoln – DC – Washington, D.C. · Old Glory – Washington, D.C. · Paolo’s Ristorante – Georgetown – Washington, D.C. · Paolo’s Ristorante – Reston – Reston, Virginia · Ping Pong Dim Sum – Dupont – Washington, D.C. · Range – Washington, D.C. · Roofers Union – Washington, D.C. · Southern Hospitality – Washington, D.C. · Teddy & The Bully Bar – Washington, D.C.