Hospitality industry tackles restaurant bill dodgers

An increasing number of pub landlords and restaurant owners are stepping up efforts to counter the phenomenon of bill dodgers. That's according to a report in Het Nieuwsblad. It's especially a problem at the coast, but the hospitality industry is finding more ways to catch the "thieves".

It may be linked to the financial crisis, but more customers are leaving pubs and restaurants without paying the bill. The so-called "restaurant running" usually happens at busy moments and involves clients eating or drinking outside. It's especially seen at the Belgian coast, because many clients often go to a place just once and never come back.

Restaurant owners are installing more CCTV to keep a better eye on things. There is no conflict with privacy legislation, as long as they clearly indicate that they are using cameras. Others give their waiters outside the latest communication technology in order to be able to intervene quickly when this is necessary.