Jump to content

10% 'service charge' on group restaurant booking?


  • Please log in to reply
35 replies to this topic

#1 Mpjp is feral

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:28 PM

We booked a lunch  for my mums bday at a nearby restaurant for 40 people last week and I was just reading the t&c's.  They state that there is a compulsory 10% 'service charge' on all group bookings. I've never heard of this before....in australia......has anyone else?

We are paying $135 a head so the lunch spend is $5400.....so I have to add $540 on top?!

Am I expected to tip as well?

TIA

#2 katpaws

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:30 PM

I think it is in case you don't turn up. Some restaurants in Melbourne charge like $100 no turn up fee with bookings.

And no way would i tip with that sort of extra cost.

Edited by katpaws, 11 August 2013 - 05:31 PM.


#3 Mpjp is feral

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:33 PM

But if we don't turn up they don't get their service charge anyway....it's not part of the deposit but is charged at the end of the day....

#4 JRA

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:33 PM

I have heard of it before. I would not tip as well, that is the tip in my eyes

#5 Mpjp is feral

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:35 PM

Thx..... Why don't they just include it in the per head... Ie $147.50 per head?

#6 AllyK81

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:35 PM

Never come across it & wouldn't be happy paying it. I'd call them to negotiate this. I'm sure they'd rather waive it than lose the booking.

#7 CallMeFeral

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:35 PM

I would not tip if paying that.
I'd baulk at going there at all, tbh.

#8 katpaws

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:35 PM

The other day i read that restaurants are suffering because more people are eating in making their own food (damn you Master Chef!!!). Restauranteurs are saying it is too expensive to run restaurants atm ie staff costs etc - so maybe that is why the extra cost???

#9 brain

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:38 PM

I wouldn't be thrilled with that.  A 10% deposit at booking (which is taken off the account at the end) is one thing, or on public holidays I expect an additional charge, but not just for a large booking.

#10 Mpjp is feral

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:39 PM

Just goes to show I obviously don get out enough!!!!

I was already over my $5k budget....this wasn't something I had accounted for...they never spoke to me abut it!

I might talk to them and see what I can negotiate given the spend overall.

Lucky my mum is worth it!!!!

#11 JRA

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:39 PM

If they hadn't mentioned it up front I would definitely talk to them.

#12 Bess Marvin

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:45 PM

The only time I have had a group service charge was when a large group was ordering a la carte. If you are on a fixed menu, then I would question it, see if you can negotiate down a little. While the wait staff will be busy managing your party's drinks, the kitchen staff will be able to pre-prep, so I wouldn't imagine it's AS big a deal for them as it could be.

I wouldn't tip as well. Unless they do a stellar job :)

#13 Mpjp is feral

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:55 PM

It's a 'share menu' that we've already 'designed' with the chef, so from a service perspective much easier than al la carte!!!

#14 Coffeegirl

Posted 11 August 2013 - 05:57 PM

It seems to be the standard with most restaurant bookings I've made over 10 people.

Fair enough too.  With a normal evening the kitchen and front of service staff can scatter bookings so they don't get 10 tables all ordering at the same time.

For large bookings, the kitchen normally has to have extra staff on hand to cover cooking all the meals and serving them all piping hot at the same time.  Think of 40 steaks all having to be served at the same time, rather than cooking 40 steaks over the course of 2-3 hours.  

I wouldn't tip afterwards though unless you have outstanding food and service.  The 10% is the gratuity.

#15 Funwith3

Posted 11 August 2013 - 06:44 PM

I've never heard of it. If they definitely didn't tell you about it when you booked, you should bring it up. $540 extra is just stupid - they should be offering you a BETTER price than normal because of all the money you're spending.... Not charging you extra.

#16 BornToLove

Posted 11 August 2013 - 06:59 PM

Common in Melbourne. I have booked several group (10+ ppl) bookings over the last year. All have charged a surcharge of 10% on the final bill. Two also required a minimum spend for the booking.

This is also very common in North America. Group bookings often get a surcharge of 15-25%. I have seen as high as 35%. This is in lieu of a proper tip.

Edited by BornToLove, 11 August 2013 - 07:02 PM.


#17 Mumsyto2

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:06 PM

Standard but I just look at it as an inbuilt tip. I usually tip 10% and its always 'the done thing' when with a group anyway unless something goes hideously astray so I just I would not have spent it anyway just the name is different - tip, service charge.

#18 Lim Lam

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:06 PM

View PostFunwith3, on 11 August 2013 - 06:44 PM, said:

I've never heard of it. If they definitely didn't tell you about it when you booked, you should bring it up. $540 extra is just stupid - they should be offering you a BETTER price than normal because of all the money you're spending.... Not charging you extra.

Yep

#19 No-pants Agnodice

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:17 PM

Do they just mean GST?

#20 c.sanders

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:18 PM

that's ridiculously expensive. are they serving everyone lobsters? lol. :) i would try to negotiate or go elsewhere.

#21 Therese

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:22 PM

When booking a group of ten or more people it does seem quite common. I don't think you are expected to tip then though. ( thankfully)

#22 Shellby

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:31 PM

Where I live we don't have it, but once a year I have dinner out with a group in Sydney and found it was very common - normally we will search around until we find somewhere that doesn't have the charge.

I was told one reason for the charge was large groups tend to stay longer or take the table for the whole night, whereas a group of 2-4 would only stay long enough for a whole meal and leave whereas a group over 10 tend to stay past that all chatting and getting around to each other meaning they lose money on those tables not being free for new diners - so it kinda means sense when you look at it that way.

#23 seayork2002

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:43 PM

I have heard about that for years but never understood it if you have, for example, 5 tables with 2 people on each how is that different to a table of 10?

#24 HubbaBubbaMumma

Posted 11 August 2013 - 07:51 PM

Sorry but it's a blatant rip off.

Your 'service charge' at a restaurant is what you pay for your meal - it's all costed to factor in wages, food costs, linen, power etc.

I'd personally finding a restaurant that doesn't charge it.



#25 Feral-as-Meggs

Posted 11 August 2013 - 08:07 PM

Ive seen it a lot in Sydney.  From the restaurants POV the reasons are:

Big groups take ages to get organised and order, as some people are always late and then there is a lot of dithering.  Then they stay late chatting.  So the restaurant may lose a second sitting.  

Often big groups don't actually tip, as there are usually some people who don't put in enough and what other people put in for a tip gets used up just paying the bill.  

Even if the whole restaurant is not booked out, other diners might not come in when its clear there is a big group booking, as they feel overwhelmed as a couple or small group, so they lose tables.  

It's a pain getting all the courses ready on time, and they might call in extra staff.  

But you aren't expected to tip on top.  






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Heartwarming prank gives single mum the house she was hired to clean

Cara Simmons arrived at work to clean a large and beautiful house in time for a party planned for that evening. It was soon hers.

Why we should stop telling new parents to 'enjoy every moment'

A few weeks ago, some dear friends of mine had their first baby. As the proud dad texted me a picture I had to fight the natural instinct to say “Enjoy every moment!”

Transgender dad breastfeeds his babies

A transgender man who breastfed his first baby - despite having his breasts removed as part of his transformation from female to male - has now had a second child.

Couple face $1 million medical bill and bankruptcy after babymoon birth

A Canadian couple were slammed with a million dollar medical bill after their daughter was prematurely during their babymoon.

Win one of 5 Little Tikes Cozy Coupe Sport

Australia?s No 1 selling car is now available in a Sports model and we have 5 to give away to some lucky Essential Baby families.

Cigarettes, junk food dominate supermarket sales growth

One in every five dollars spent at supermarkets goes on cigarettes or junk food, according to industry data.

Teacher under fire for breastfeeding in class

There is no doubt mums have a right to continue breastfeeding after they have returned to work, but one teacher in the US has taken it to the extreme.

Video: Baby sniffs beardless dad to make sure it's him

She looks him up and down and then touches his chin, but baby Lindsey still isn't sure this clean-shaven man is her dad.

The tragedy of losing a favourite teddy bear

We were green and uninitiated, perhaps a little naïve when it came to the favourite toy responsibility.

It's possible to workout while pregnant

Medical experts say intense fitness routines can be done safely during pregnancy - if the mums-to-be follow some guidelines.

Baby for Asher Keddie and Vincent Fantauzzo

Fans followed every step of her on-screen pregnancy in Offspring, now Asher Keddie is going to be a mum in real life too.

What parents really want for their kids

Are our hopes, dreams and expectations for our children what they really need?

'I had a feeling something was seriously wrong': the fight for Kaden's diagnosis

Before even giving birth, Katie Myers' maternal instincts warned her something was wrong with her baby.

When your pregnancy causes a relationship rift

Some dads-to-be don't miss a beat when their partner is pregnant; others struggle with a range of issues and can become withdrawn, right when their support is needed most.

Couple uses group photo trick to announce pregnancy to loved ones

Katharine and Kris Camilli devised a clever trick to immortalise their family and friends' reaction to their exciting pregnancy news.

Why Tracey Spicer has given up make-up

"After 30 years on television, I had become what I despised: a painted doll who spent an hour a day and close to $200 a week putting on a mask."

Empowering bikini photo of 46-year-old mum goes viral

When a group of teenagers made rude remarks about her body as she walked past them in a bikini at the local beach, Julie Cross refused to cover up.

Devastated widow discovers she's pregnant the day before husband's funeral

They had been trying to conceive a baby for seven years. Tragically Kristy Kirchner found out she was pregnant the day before her husband Royce's funeral.

Win a family pass to Disney Live!

We have 4 family passes to give away to see Disney Live! presents Three Classic Fairy Tales, touring Australia this December/January.

Gabriella Goat sues Peppa Pig

Every toddler's favourite television pig is being sued by an Italian woman who shares a name with a Peppa Pig character.

Meet the Mpregs, the male pregnancy enthusiasts

"Men can't have babies - that's something only women can do! But our community is full of like-minded people who wish otherwise."

Your new motherhood survival kit

Forget about the bright, pretty baby things - while you're in survival mode, all you'll need are the essentials.

More than 100,000 cars recalled globally after death of pregnant woman

The announcement of a mass recall comes as Malaysian police investigate the death of pregnant woman in July.

I had a 'good baby' but still suffered from postnatal depression

I had a much wanted precious baby girl, a 'good baby' who slept well, self settled and was mostly content. It just seemed implausible to think I could succumb to depression.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Win one of 5 Little Tikes Cozy Coupe Sport

Australia?s No 1 selling car is now available in a Sports model and we have 5 to give away to some lucky Essential Baby families.

Join PADDINGTON on the red carpet!

To celebrate the release of PADDINGTON, we are giving five lucky winners the chance to win a family pass to the exclusive Australian Premiere in Sydney on December 7!

Knowing you are one of the lucky ones

I am secure, confident and strong, but the responsibility of protecting my children can almost bring me undone.

Why I am so emotional now I have kids?

There are so many ways in which parenthood changes us as women, but one of the most noticeable, for me, has been the changing state of my emotions.

Baby survives despite sharing womb with 'foreign body'

Baby Maia was conceived against the odds, only to find she was sharing a womb with an ominous "foreign body".

Video: Baby shows dog how to jump - or vice versa

They say dog is man's best friend, but this playful pooch seems to have chosen a jumping baby as her number one buddy.

10 ways to soothe a crying baby

New paernts can get frustrated when their newborn gets fussy and can't settle down. When you're feeling overwhelmed, try some of these simple tips to help soothe your baby.

20 baby names that are becoming more popular every year

The data-lovers at nameberry.com have been at it again – this time, they’ve discovered the names that are continually rising up the ranks, ready to take out some top spots in the next few years.

10 great meals to make for new parents

Ideally, you want to give food that isn’t expensive to make, isn't too difficult to create, and freezes well; stews, bakes, soups and pasta sauces are perfect.

'It's not you, it's me': Boston bombing survivor mum to have leg amputated

Rebekah DiMartino is going through a break-up. She even wrote a farewell love letter. But it's not to her husband.

What it's like to go through early menopause

In a cruel twist, Carla had been breastfeeding and perimenopausal at the same time. But she's far from the only one to go through menopause early.

Restaurant served alcohol to two-year-old

Busy restaurants can be forgiven for getting food and drink orders mixed up from time to time, but not when the confusion leads to a two-year-old being served an alcoholic cocktail instead of the child-friendly beverage they ordered.

Julia Morris tells of miscarriage on a flight

Julia Morris has spoken about the devastation of suffering a miscarriage while on an international flight.

Woman's survival after birth 'a story of two miracles'

A US mother is home and tending to her new baby less than a month after surviving without a pulse for 45 minutes.

Eating ice may give mental boost to the iron deficient: study

A new study proposes that, like a strong cup of coffee, ice may give those with insufficient iron a much-needed mental boost.

Tiny lives in caring hands: Thank U NICU Day

Each year in Australia, over 40,000 newborns need the help of a special care nursery or neonatal intensive care unit. One day a year, the staff are honoured by the parents they help through those dark days.

I paid $50,000 to have a girl

This time my husband and I hadn't taken any chances. We had paid $50,000 and travelled 13,000 kilometres to make sure the baby growing inside me was female.

Weird pregnancy products

Some pregnancy products come to market and are just awesome. Others just leave you scratching your head.

Dear firstborn, I'm sorry

Being a first-time mum is tough for so many reasons – particularly because you really have no idea what you're doing.

A trace of sesame could kill my son

Helen Richardson son's had two anaphylactic reactions in a month. It's traumatic for everyone.

When you know before the test says yes

It wasn't a pregnancy test or missed period that told me I was pregnant with my second baby; it was too early for those things. A doner kebab told me I was going to be a mum again.

What not to do when your partner is in labour

Robbie Williams stole the show during his wife Ayda's labour, pretty much demonstrating everything on the "what not to do when your partner is in labour" list.

Best maternity swimwear and beach cover-ups

Thinking about a tropical babymoon but have nothing to wear? Here are some great swimwear and beach cover-up options for mums-to-be.

Dad breastfeeds his babies

Trevor Macdonald has now been pregnant twice, and is successfully breastfeeding his newest family member.

 

How many weeks til Christmas?

On your To-Do list

Get the "Santa" shopping done without the kids in tow.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.