Restaurants would prefer to skip Valentine’s Day.

Restaurant Association members report that couples who come for Valentine’s Day clear out the highly profitable regulars at the bar who drink more, and spend more.

What’s more, the tables for two limit the big checks which come from bigger groups and corporate events.

And couples take longer and don’t turn the tables as quickly. Valentine’s Day couples average 120 minutes per meal versus the 70 minutes on a regular night, and they tip less. Ouch!

There’s some good news for restaurants though. The bloom is coming off the Valentine’s Day rose. Only 51% say they plan on celebrating the day this year, down from 55% last year, and an all-time high of 63% in 2007.

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