App of the Week, Valentines Edition: OpenTable

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By Awais Qazi

This one is for all of our lovely NJIT Power Couples.

Don’t you just hate it when a week of planning out the perfect date for you and your sweetheart is ruined by having to wait for a table at the fancy restaurant of your choice? Well, worry no more! OpenTable is an app that goes above and beyond the call of duty by helping you find the perfect restaurant and helps you easily make a reservation. The best part, this is all entirely free! There no longer is a need to slyly slip the restaurant host a quick $20 to get you a seat right away; you’ve already got a seat waiting for you.

The interface of the app is really simple. All you need to do is enter the number of people in your party, the date of the reservation, and the time you would like to show up. You can also enter a specific location in which you would like to dine, however it defaults to showing you the restaurants closest to you for convenience. You can scroll through the restaurants, see their ratings, and a bunch of other pertinent information. It shows you the dress code, so you know how to dress for the occasion, and it also shows the estimated price of your meal so that you can have a general idea of how much money to bring. You can see the entire menu in advance, in case you do not believe their estimated price. The menus are extremely easy to read, and it breaks it down into different categories, such as Soups & Salads, Appetizers, etc., so it is easy to see exactly what you would like to have. The app also allows you to pay your bill at the restaurant from within the app, so you do not have to deal with the stress of seeing the physical check come to your table. It will be right there for you on your phone.

The app also includes a rewards program. For every 2000 points you accumulate, you get $20 worth of credit from the app. You get 100 points for making a reservation and showing up, and some places will even give you 1000 points for making a reservation. You can also trade points with other people so you can share the wealth and ensure everyone is having a great time. If you have an Apple Watch, your reservations get synced with your watch, so you never miss a date. Last, but not least, you can also send out calendar invites to your friends, right from the app. So you can make a reservation and automatically have it placed on all your friends’ calendars so that they are forced to show up punctually.

OpenTable is a great app that will instantly make you feel like the most powerful person in the world. Just remember, with great power, comes great responsibility.

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