East Coast Wine Trail

East Coast Wine Trail
East Coast Wine Trail

Saturday, 14 May 2022

Reaching tipping point

We all know that the hospitality and restaurant industries have been doing it tough over the past couple of years. 

Venues have closed; workers been laid off. 

But there is no excuse for a new scam I have increasingly been seeing on my travels: the tip con. 

It works this way. You pay your bill and a 10% or 15% service charge is included. 

You’d assume that would go to those who have provided “service” - but that is not always the case. 

Instead, many bills and credit card chits now are including a “tip” slot, where they hope the unwary will add another 10 or 15%, not noticing they have already paid a service charge. 

Generous, or stupid, souls could easily end up paying 30% for service that is often not as good as it was pre-Covid. 

Pay attention, or tip in cash to a worthy recipient. 

I have also noticed a sad trend in Patong to ridiculously overcharge foreigners for goods that may well be fake anyway.

I needed a small, soft-sided carry-on luggage bag of the type that costs $12 on EBay and a similar sum at KMart or Big W. 

First up I was quoted 1500 baht (nearly $60 aus). That came down 1000, then 800. 

After twice walking away, I finally negotiated one for 300 baht (around $12). 

I know full well that bartering is an art in Thailand - but if returning tourists are ripped off they will choose another destination next time.  

Caveat emptor.

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