Would You Turn Your Cellphone off to Receive a Discount?

Would You Turn Your Cellphone off to Receive a Discount?It has happened to all of us. We are in a restaurant, a movie theater, or other public gathering when a cellphone rings. What happens next is enough to send anyone over the edge of sanity. Some loud mouth, inconsiderate person decides to share their conversation with the rest of us. But what’s the solution? If a company, a restaurant, a movie theater, or some other public entity gave you a discount, would you turn in your cellphone before entering the establishment?

One upscale restaurant in the Los Angeles area called Eva Restaurant is doing just that. If restaurant patrons are willing to surrender their cellphones when entering the business, they in turn will receive a 5% discount on their meal. This is not a ban on cellphones, since the discount program is strictly voluntary. What the owners of the restaurant are hoping is that this program will provide customers with a better, less distracted dining experience.

Is handing over your phone to people you may not know a good idea?

While handing over your phone to receive a discount on your food purchase may seem like a wise decision, how does one know that personal information stored on your phone may not be compromised? Information can include:

  • Personal phone numbers
  • Banking information
  • Passwords
  • Email contacts
  • Credit card information

With this being said, even losing a phone can be hazardous to your privacy. Most of us who wish to protect our phones will either add a password or, with the new Android Jelly Bean, protect access to our phones using facial recognition. There are other means available to protect our phones, so the chance of restaurant personnel trying to crack a password or code is slim. If you own a dumb phone, the point becomes a non-event.

If you are extremely paranoid and want a 100% guaranteed way to ensure that your information is not compromised, you can often remove the battery from your phone. The odds of anyone having the exact replacement battery would be very slim.

For those of us who come from a generation that once relied on a home phone and answering machine, I don’t believe it would be a hardship to go without a cellphone for an hour or so. But how about others who live for text messages, phone calls, and emails on the go? Would it be that hard to give up a cellphone for an hour when a discount is offered?

What about you? Could you give up your cellphone for an hour or so?

Comments welcome.

CC licensed Flickr photo above shared by compujeramey

Source: Eva Restaurant