Loyalty & Rewards

AmEx Cooks Up Rewards Deal With Chili’s

American Express announced that Card Members enrolled in the Membership Rewards program will soon be able to use Membership Rewards points for dine-in purchases at participating Chili’s Grill & Bar restaurants nationwide. The rollout will begin with company-owned restaurants on May 18, with the remaining participating restaurants joining throughout the rest of the year.

When dining at a participating Chili’s location, Card Members can choose to pay their check using their American Express Card and Membership Rewards points exclusively on the Ziosk tablet directly at their table.

“As the first casual dining restaurant brand to offer this opportunity, this is just another example of how we are continuing to leverage technology to enhance the guest experience within our restaurants,” said Wyman Roberts, CEO and president of Brinker International and president of Chili’s Grill & Bar. “American Express’s innovative and rich Membership Rewards program fits seamlessly into the Pay & Go functionality of our tabletop tablets, giving guests even more control and options when dining at Chili’s.”

How it works:

• Swipe your eligible American Express Card at the Ziosk tablet located on your Chili’s table.

• You will be presented an option on the payment screen to redeem points. You’ll see the option to use points along with the number of points you’ll need to use.

• Press the blue button that says “use points” to use points for your order.

In June 2014, Chili’s turned to tablet manufacturer Ziosk based in Dallas to replace its menus with digital tableside tablets at its restaurants around the country. The chain restaurant completed what it called “the largest rollout of tabletop tablets in the U.S.” with the installation of more than 45,000 tablets across 823 Chili’s restaurants.

Ziosk is now a popular tablet option operating in 1,350 restaurants nationwide, including Chili’s, Smokey Bones Bar & Fire Grill, Abuelo’s and soon in Olive Garden restaurants.

According to Ziosk, Guests who use the tablet are 10 times more likely to enroll in a restaurant’s loyalty club and 20 to 30 times more likely to participate in a guest satisfaction survey, giving restaurants even more insights into their customers’ experiences. The tablet can also boost impulse orders of appetizers and desserts. The images appearing on the screen of the tablet are a constant and sweet reminder that resistance is futile.

E La Carte also recently launched its own tablets, dubbed Presto. The restaurant chain raised $35 million for a global expansion after its initial success. The company claims a 5 percent boost in restaurant sales and an increase in table turnover of as many as 10 minutes.

One can wonder if 21st Century restaurants aren’t making waiters obsolete.

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