oppn parties Why Service Charge for Bad Service?

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  • Imran Khan raises nuclear war bogey again, says if Pakistan loses a conventional war, it might fight till the end with its nuclear arsenal
  • Searching for Rajeev Kumar, ex-CP, Kolkata Police, the CBI approaches state DGP to know about his whereabouts
  • Ferry overturns in the river Godavari in Andhra. 46 feared dead
  • Supreme Court to hear pleas on Jammu & Kashmir today
  • Ghulam Nabi Azad moves Supreme Court for ordering the government to allow him to visit his family in J&K
  • GST Council meeting to focus on leakages and evasions, expected to tighten processes, especially regarding input tax credit
  • Finance minister, citing figures for July 2019, says that industrial production and fixed investment is showing signs of revival
  • Amit Shah's comment on Hindi as the unifying language draws the ire of MK Stalin and Siddaramaiah. Stalin says the country is India not Hindia
  • On Hindi Diwas today, Amit Shah says use of mother language must be increased but Hindi should be adopted as the common language of the country
  • Pakistan raises white flag on LoC to claim bodies of dead soldiers
  • India beat Bangladesh by 5 runs to lift the U-19 Asia Cup
  • A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court will examine the amendments to the SC/ST act made after an apex court order that 'diluted' the provisions and which were reinstatd by the amendment
  • Delhi government decides to re-implement the odd-even system of traffic management from November 4 to 15
  • UP to discontinue law that allows the state government to pay the income tax dues of ministers
  • Anand Sharma of the Congress to replace P Chidambaram on the parliamentary committee on home affairs
Sunni Wakf Board and Nirvani Akhara write to the Supreme Court for a negotiated settlement to the Ayodhya dispute
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Why Service Charge for Bad Service?

By admin

About the Author

Sunil Garodia By our team of in-house writers.
People are talking about restaurant bills now. With the government saying that the service charge (as distinct from service tax, which has to be paid mandatorily) component should be optional – that a customer should pay only if he or she gets service of an expected quality, otherwise they can ask the eatery to revise the bill, the people have started talking about their horrible experiences in renowned restaurants where they were forced to pay 20% service charge on food bills despite getting atrocious service. Trade bodies of restaurants have retorted by saying that they will continue with the service charge and have haughtily added that patrons are welcome not to visit if they do not wish to pay the same.

Restaurants add various charges on their bills. One such is establishment charges. Taking the plea that they are providing diners with plush seating, lavish décor and air-conditioning, eateries charge a premium of anywhere between 200 to 500 percent on bottled water and branded soft drinks on the maximum retail price. If one carries one’s own drinking water, many times eateries do not provide empty glasses for the same. People have long resented this.

Logic provides that if a business is being run as a sit-down fine dining place, the price of food must cover all overheads the entrepreneur incurs. If dishes are priced upwards of Rs 350 for a portion, the waiter who serves the dishes must get his salary from that. Levying additional charges is abominable. Restaurants are already talking about how prices will be upwardly revised if they are not allowed to charge for service.

But keeping the service charge component optional is sure to start many ugly fights in restaurants. The best way would be for eateries to prominently display a board saying “this restaurant levies XX% service charge on its bill” and leave it to the diner whether he wishes to eat there or not. The same message should be prominently printed on all pages of the menu instead of being relegated to a small, 7 point line at the bottom. Many patrons end up leaving tips even after paying service charge in the bill as they do not know they have been charged separately for the service.