Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Surcharges

I don't know if it's just me, but the growing practice of companies tacking on fees and surcharges to your bill really pisses me off.  The restaurant industry, one of the most exploitative industries in all the world, seems determined to punish everyone for the cost of health care. So, we're seeing surcharges popping up on restaurant bills for employee health care.  I gather it's sweeping California and is now turning up in Denver area restaurants. This is no more legitimate than tacking on a fee for the light bill.  And that's been done too. I walked out of a Wyoming hotel over an energy surcharge a few years ago.  

The costs of business, including wages, taxes, insurance and employee benefits are just that--costs. A business can charge whatever they want for their goods or services.  But I think these tack-ons amount to a crooked slight of hand where you get no particular value for these added charges.  The only thing I can do about it is refuse to pay it and seek out other businesses that don't play this game.  And that's what I do. It may be a losing battle, but if people would simply walk out the door when they encounter this practice, it would stop rather quickly.  I actually think these tack on charges bring in far less revenue than the greedy businesses believe simply because there's no way to count up sales lost in the bottom line. How many people like me simply walked out the door, or never came back because of it.  

So, in moron terms, if you have to charge $4 for a hot dog instead of $3 because of your costs of doing business, then post it on your menu and people can decide if they want that hot dog. Tacking it on as a by the way, we're sneaking this in, is underhanded and deceptive. 

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