Advertisement

Fast food restaurants are imposing time limits on dining in: ‘These rules are here for a reason’

A Reddit post detailing one a 30-minute
A Reddit post detailing one a 30-minute "eat and run" policy at a Wendy's blew up online as viewers speculated over what prompted it.

Fast food just got even faster.

It seems that an increasing number of fast food outlets are imposing limits on how long patrons have to gobble their burgers and fries. Recently, a Reddit post detailed a half-hour “eat and run” policy as readers shared similar stories of fast food outlets restricting their chow time.

“I work right next door and I just saw this as I was entering!” exclaimed a stunned commenter in the caption of said post.

The accompanying photo, taken at an undisclosed outlet, depicts an “unfriendly” sign stipulating that there is “no loitering or solicitation” and that customers have a “30-minute” window in which to consume their food.

“The management must enforce these rules,” the sign reads. “Your cooperation is appreciated.”

Many theorized that it was a measure to deter vagrants. Reddit/Blackevilsoul
Many theorized that it was a measure to deter vagrants. Reddit/Blackevilsoul

While the reason for the advisory wasn’t specified, Redditors had their own theories, with many citing similar policies at their local fast food depots.

“Yeah, there are 30-minute limits here in Denver at McDonald’s,” wrote one commenter.

Many claimed they imposed the policy to deter vagrants.

A similar sign at McDonald’s. Reddit/ Desperate_Guess_6201
A similar sign at McDonald’s. Reddit/ Desperate_Guess_6201

“In Baltimore City, there was a sign in the bathroom that said that it was for customers only,” declared another. “They did not want homeless people living in restrooms, or even showering in them.”

“Not sure how many of you have been to Los Angeles, but these rules are here for a reason,” said another. “Vagrants will pull up and literally take up three booths with their belongings for hours after buying a single soda, and if this sign isn’t here they’ll just fight the staff (half the time they fight them anyways).”

A third wrote, “Good! The Wendy’s near me is borderline a homeless shelter. Smells f–king awful. Homeless sleeping in the booths. Walked in on one in the bathroom, naked.”

However, others blamed “teenagers” and other freeloaders who buy cheap items so they can treat the restaurant as an all-day hangout at which to carouse and leech off the wifi.

A Wendy’s sign and logo are shown at one of the company’s restaurants in Encinitas, California May 10, 2016. REUTERS
A Wendy’s sign and logo are shown at one of the company’s restaurants in Encinitas, California May 10, 2016. REUTERS

“Probably aimed at the person who orders one thing off the dollar $3 menu and a fountain drink and then proceeds to stay for 4 hours,” theorized one.

The Post reached out to Wendy’s for comment.

In a similar story ten years ago, employees at a McDonald’s outlet in Flushing, Queens called the police on a group of Korean elders who defied their 20-minute eating window.

The group would reportedly split a packet of fries ($1.39) and medium coffees ($1.09), and then proceed to colonize the Golden Arches for four hours.

“It’s a McDonald’s not a senior center,” griped the outlet’s manager Martha Anderson while voicing her exasperation.

She reportedly dialed the cops after the fry squatters refused to move, prompting customers to demand refunds as there was nowhere to sit.

And it’s not just fast food outlets telling customers to dine and dash…legally speaking.

Last year, several restaurants in New York City sparked backlash after imposing 90-minute time limits on diners due to space and staffing shortages following the pandemic.