What to keep in mind when igloo dining
Igloo dining is a faily new dining experience that took off during the COVID 19 pandemic. A lot of restaurants started building igloos (mostly) outside their building, usually heated, in order to have groups of people dine together in an igloo, while at the same time keeping a distance from other people.
One of the reasons why igloo dining took off was the unique dining experience that it offered to people. You could dine with an amazing view, whether it was a lake view, a mountain view, a street view, or perhaps you could be enjoying a warm dinner as it was snowing outside.
But there’s a few things to keep in mind when it comes to igloo dining, as there are some written rules, and sometimes unwritten rules you need to follow.
Reservation is usually required in advance
Because restaurants have a limited number of igloos, restaurants require an advanced reservation for their igloos.
There’s usually an order minimum
Because igloos are limited and the demand is high, restaurants have to place an order minimum. From what we’ve seen, that minimum tends to be around $200-$250 mark. That minimum doesn’t include gratuity.
Expect to pay a mandatory gratuity
This is common sense, but there’s still people out there that don’t tip. And because restaurants are facing hiring challenges, they’re forced to place a mandatory gratuity of 20% (or sometimes 18%) on igloo dining. But don’t let that scare you off, because group dining almost always had an automatic gratuity anyways.
There’s a non-refundable reservation fee
There might be a few restaurants that don’t have this, but most restaurants we’ve seen have a non-refundable reservation fee. The reason for this fee is that restaurants want to make sure you show up. Again, the limited amount of igloos that restaurants have is what leads to this.
Expect to have less than 2 hours of dining
It might sound weird, but restaurants usually chop up their igloo dining in 2 hour slots to avoid people from staying in the igloo forever. Also, because the next group of people have reserved your igloo. Don’t forget that the restaurant also needs to clean it and prepare it for the next group, so be courtious when igloo dining.
Expect to reserve online only
Lots of restaurants only accept online reservations for the igloos, so before calling a restaurant to reserve, make sure you check out their website. That’s where most likely you’ll find information on igloo dining, and how to reserve.
Limited number of guests
Well, you will be inside an igloo, so normally you can’t have 15 people inside. Restaurants usually only allow up to 10 people igloo dining.
This might be obvious, but in states that prohibit indoor smoking, you’re not allowed to smoke inside the igloos either.