Welsh pub offers diners a 25% discount if they lock their phones away

A pub in Wrexham is offering a 25% discount to those that lock away their phones while they eat as part of its ‘Mobile-Free Mondays’ campaign.

The Fat Boar pub wants to encourage its customers to spend less time staring at their mobiles and more time actually talking to each other.

Customers will receive a 25% discount as part of a trial period of Mobile-Free Mondays.

Staff will come round with a cash box and invite punters to lock away their phones. The boxes will remain on the table, but staff will keep the keys to ensure there’s no cheating.

Announcing the scheme in a Facebook post, the pub explained the rules: “1. Hand us your mobile when you sit in our restaurant.
“2. Not have the phone returned until you pay your bill.
“3. Book in advance.
“4. Talk, chat & enjoy your evening with no distraction!”

Rich Watkin, the Fat Boar’s director, told the BBC: “Mobiles can often be a real distraction and stop us from just sitting among family and friends and simply having a good conversation and that’s why I came up with the idea.”

Restaurant manager Jade Darlington added: “I think we all feel a certain amount of pressure to be constantly checking emails, social media, texts and all the other messaging on our phones.

“But if we can do something to encourage people to put their phones down and concentrate solely on one another and the fun night out they are having with us, then I think that’s a really positive thing”.

In a post on Instagram, the pub thanked everyone for “such a great response to our Facebook post from last Monday”.

“We are always looking at new initiatives and fun light hearted ideas that will spark interest in our pub. We see people come in with friends, family, partners etc and then not interacting with each other.

“The dining culture has changed so much, to the point a lot of places have mobile phone charging points and offer incentives via your phone. So we don’t want to just follow what others do.

“We want people to switch off to the trappings of social media for a couple of hours and just relax with the company they have in front of them, and getting 25% off their food bill is a nice bonus!

“We had a great response to our first #mobilefreemonday, even with the freezing cold weather outside. We really enjoyed the increased chatter amongst the tables and look forward to next week already!”

The pub hopes to also set up the scheme at its sister restaurant on Chester Street in Mold.

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