Berlin restaurants have begun scamming customers

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Several restaurants in Berlin, one of Europe's most-visited capitals, have begun issuing illicit bills to tourists with a message in English nudging them to pay more than is due.

 

Bills marked with the message "Service not included" or "Tip not included" are handed out routinely to customers who did not order in German at some establishments.

 

The addition in English or French, usually added with a stamp or printed, does not appear on bills in German. Laws governing the hospitality and catering sector stipulate that all prices include both tax and service.

 

485 words remaining. Click to read the full article.

 

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Interesting article... I've encountered this practice at least twice.

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It's worse in Prague where some waiters bring your bill with a small handheld calculator on top showing "the real total" with a 15-20% tip added on! This happened in a restaurant I really like and I've never felt the saame about the place.

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Despite taking part in a few discussions with Americans and others on this subject I still can't understand the "You HAVE to tip" idea.

 

If the resturant wants to charge a service charge then just put it on the bill as a charge.

 

A tip is to reward good service and should not be being demanded by the server no matter how oblique the demand is.

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I had this in a cocktaily bar on Simon-Dach-Str, on the corner of Boxhagener Str I think.

 

Mixed group, ordered and spoke to each other in Krout, yet we were presented with a bill which 'service not included' was written by hand on the top. Hillarious.

 

The waitress had already made her displeasure that we did not want to eat a full meal at 4pm known to all.

 

Naturally the tip given was commensurate with the service B)

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Kommentarlos, was this at Euphoria? Corner of Simon-Dach and Grünberger Str? It is always written on our bills there (we speak German but I am sure still sound like Ausländers). I always thought it was funny too. We never tipped any differently. I am just happy to say that I have never gotten it written on my bill anywhere else!

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Despite taking part in a few discussions with Americans and others on this subject I still can't understand the "You HAVE to tip" idea.

You never HAVE to tip (unless you have a huge party and its on the bill), you are just a tightwad prick who doesn't understand the customs of the land they are in if you don't do it in America (A catagory many Americans are also in).

 

Its created a system where students and unfortunates can get paid something better than a shit job at mcdonalds through guilt tripping instead of legislation :)

 

That being said, if you demand a tip you are a shitty waiter, as thats going to backfire more than work.

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Euphoria. Yep, that was the one :lol:

 

When we stared at the bill blankly in amused disbelief, some snotty waitress re-iterated in English that service was not included just in case we hadn't got the point.

 

Not really something to take seriously, but was quite biazarre at the time.

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Simon-Dach is the last place considered when thinking of where to go to eat, not for this exact reason, but for poor service all the same.

 

Even as someone from a long line of overtippers, I will not tip here for bad service, which is all too common. There are other places I'd rather spend my money. That said... honestly who gives a shite if someone urges you to tip by reminding you that the tip is not included? As long as they don't overcharge you, but rather attempt to cash in on the opportunity presented by Americans--people who are known to come from a tipping culture--sitting in their section, no one is getting hurt.

 

Although I know the tipping rules here, I always tip American-style when I am impressed by the service. If someone wants to work extra hard in order to benefit from the money I may be willing to leave as a gratuity then all the better for me. Eating out in Berlin is cheap, so when you get a server who is not a condescending assmonkey leave him a tip, even if he commits the crime of reminding you about it, you tightwad bastards. <_<

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If the resturant wants to charge a service charge then just put it on the bill as a charge.

That's illegal. The price listed in the menu must include service.

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Bills marked with the message "Service not included" or "Tip not included" are handed out routinely to customers who did not order in German at some establishments.

Well at least that part has been cleared up B)

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Tipping is for suckers and it should be outlawed totally everywhere. I have worked enough in the gastronomy sector to know it is the biggest scam going.

 

For the US economy, it is one of the biggest unregulated money laundering schemes there is. I hope they fine the shit out of any restaurant caught doing this here.

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For years I haven't encountered such issue. Well, maybe once but I deserved it that night.

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Eating out in Berlin is cheap, so when you get a server who is not a condescending assmonkey leave him a tip, even if he commits the crime of reminding you about it, you tightwad bastards.

Tight bastard my ass. He or she is simply fucking doing their job. I should not have to pay more for them to do it well. The tightwad bastards are the GMs and owners that underpay their best staff because they know the public doesn't give a shit and there is always another assmonkey waiting in the wings.

 

In one particular restaurant I worked in, the GM fired anyone who had worked there too long. This was mostly due to in-house corporate pay raise rules. After your second year, you were instantly fired for anything. The GM simply did not want to keep you and you higher waged ass on the books. Took away from his bonus. As soon as I was trained, they fired the guy that trained me cause he was in his third year and therefore making too much money. One guy got to year 5, but that is only cause he went from server to "newly" hired bartender. However, at year 5 he was making too much base pay and they fired him too.

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Tipping is for suckers and it should be outlawed totally everywhere. I have worked enough in the gastronomy sector to know it is the biggest scam going.

 

For the US economy, it is one of the biggest unregulated money laundering schemes there is. I hope they fine the shit out of any restaurant caught doing this here.

what about all the freelancers here? who is checking to make sure we're reporting all our earnings?

 

servers are making shit for money and if someone wants to leave them a tip whats the big deal?

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I find it funny that the Berliners think that tourists are the problem - perhaps they should look a little bit closer to home. More often than not I am astonished at how tight-fisted my German colleagues are when it comes to tipping - like rounding 7.20€ up to 7.50€ - what's that all about?? I find it insulting that they write it in only English or French, perhaps if they wrote it in German too, waiting staff might realise what cheek they have to write it.

 

Tipping is discretionary - and should be for good service.

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Tipping is a bit strange, I usually comply with the local custom though (does that make weak minded?). What do people in Berlin normally tip? I'd give 10% in a restaurant I've had dinner, I don't tip in bars though mostly because I'd go up to the bar and get the drink myself, Irish style.

 

I agree in part with the "they're doing their job and getting paid for it, why should I give them extra", but on the other hand I think waiters and waitresses in Berlin are making terrible money. From what I've read there is no minimum wage in Germany (please correct me if I'm wrong). A German friend of mine just moved to Berlin recently and got a job as a waitress, the first two days were "unpaid trial days" which in my opinion is crazy. I think some people collecting bottles for the deposit could be making more per hour than some waiting staff in this city!

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"Laws governing the hospitality and catering sector stipulate that all prices include both tax and service." - thanks a lot!

Now I don't have to feel awkward for not tipping.

"Tipping is discretionary - and should be for good service. " - clearly you didn't understand the article. Read the quoted sentence again.

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Tipping is for suckers and it should be outlawed totally everywhere. I have worked enough in the gastronomy sector to know it is the biggest scam going.

 

For the US economy, it is one of the biggest unregulated money laundering schemes there is. I hope they fine the shit out of any restaurant caught doing this here.

Good to know Mister Pink is alive and well:

 

 

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