To my thinking, the first time a customer orders and realizes that they don’t have their wallet or cash on them can easily be taken as an honest mistake. (It happened to me at a really nice restaurant on a date — I left my wallet and cash in my apartment.Thank God my date had credit cards with her. More on that later.) A second, third, or fourth time, you know someone’s trying to game the system or worse.
The food is held back with employees while assembled, the order is confirmed, bagged, and totaled at the register. At that time the customer pays and is given their order. It’s easy to see how someone might use company policy to their advantage. The manager sees it as someone wanting to walk away with food for free, and thus “waste” of product. Restaurants are in the business to make money, not give away free food. How someone would choose to go to a restaurant without cash is beyond me. Once is an accident, more than twice is a habit. [chuckle]