Should there be a price for service?

Posted on Posted in Uncategorized

Is it necessary for service charge to be present in our everyday lives?

Think about cafes, restaurants etc. Most would provide service charge. After all, it is not everyday you see a posh restaurant requiring self-service.

However, some people are unhappy about service charge, stating that the service is not good enough, or worthy of the charge. For example, in a restaurant/cafe, a few waiters and waitresses are talking to each other/using their mobile phones/daydreaming. Subsequently, this causes them to be unable to serve their customers, or take a long time to notice and serve them.

This is an example of bad service. To prevent such cases from happening, waiters and waitresses should be alert at all times, lest they disregard a customer’s service needs. Also, they should not be using their phones during working hours, instead they should only use them before or after work, or during their breaks. If the waiters and waitresses want to talk, they should – at the very least – make sure all customers are not in need of services. Even then, they still should not talk for too long – after all, they are supposed to be doing their work.

Other people complain about service charge for a different reason – they think that the restaurant/cafe requires self-service, yet they still need to pay for service charge. For example, in a cafe, waiters/waitresses might pass customers a pager to inform them when their food is ready. Then, customers would still have to go to the counter and collect their food manually, as if it was self-service. However, the cafe would still charge the customers for service. Subsequently, this causes the customers to state that no service was provided, thus service charge is irrelevant.

To prevent these sort of arguments from taking place, the cafe should try to provide as much service as possible, to justify the service charge. For example, waiters and waitresses can bring the food and beverages to the customer’s table. This way, they would have provided service for the customers. However, if the cafe is short of manpower and has to let the customer collect his own food, maybe there should not be a service charge for the bill.

Overall, places that charge money for service should at least be able to justify the charge with sufficient service standards. Otherwise, places that cannot do that should not charge their customers for service.