Today, Groupon announced their new discounted fine dining service, Groupon Reserve. The website, which features daily deals for goods and services, now has about 600 restaurant deals throughout the country, Business Wire reported.
Groupon Reserve is based on Savored.com’s reservations engine, which Groupon acquired in September 2012. Customers can dine at a discount by reserving tables at select restaurants, without having to prepay or use vouchers. “As Groupon has evolved, we've seen growing demand from our customers for upscale offers and exclusive experiences,” Groupon CEO Eric Lefkofsky said. “Groupon Reserve gives the most prestigious brands a new way to reach our large and desirable audience.”
Like Savored, this service is a way for restaurants to fill their empty seats. Customers have to book a free reservation for the discounts, but one thing to be aware of is that an automatic 18% gratuity may be added to the discounted bill for certain restaurants. The fine print varies from restaurant to restaurant.
OpenTable, a restaurant reservation online service, is a competitor with over 28,000 restaurants across the country and the world in its database. Diners who reserve tables through OpenTable and dine at the restaurant will receive Dining Rewards points, which go towards a “dining cheque” that can be used at future OpenTable restaurants.
Groupon Reserve is not as widespread yet, but it is now available in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. Groupon plans to expand the service to other cities and international markets by the end of the year.