The rudeness surcharge: would you implement it?

Last week, a barista who imposed a 50c surcharge on customers on their mobile phones while making their order made headlines. “Fifty cent surcharge for being on the phone at the counter. It’s rude!” read the sign on the counter of the cafe. While this did outrage a few customers, the majority found it amusing, and thought it was a great idea.

We recently found out via Twitter that a newsagency has also adapted a similar method to fight rudeness, with a sign stating ‘Customers talking on mobile phones will not be served’.

Is this something you would consider implementing? Is it rude when a customer ignores you and chats on their phone while you are serving them?

How do you think your customers would react to such a sign surcharge? Leave a comment below!


3 thoughts on “The rudeness surcharge: would you implement it?

  1. It’s hard enough to find out what customers want without having to be a party to a “three way conversation” because the customers are on the phone. It really slows down service when the customer isn’t giving you their full attention. It disadvantages waiting customers who have enough manners to wait until service is complete to use their phones. Are these people really so important that others can’t wait for 2 or 3 minutes for their opinion. Extremely rude and selfish to be on your phone when someone is trying provide customer service. Yes, I would put up a sign denying service to people on the phone.


  2. I simply refuse to serve them and ask to help the next customer. The only exception is the customer who says excuse me I’ve been waiting for this person to call back. These people generally either say serve the next person while I take this call or answer and ask the person on the phone to wait while they complete the transaction.


  3. I find that if I liaise with a customer whom is on the phone as if they weren’t , ie ignore the phone call and talk/ask questions etc in a slightly louder voice it upsets their “train of though”t and they either stop/hold the call or leave the counter to finish ,if its busy and they have already waited they always hold/stop the call, if they ignore my service then II ignore them and ask for the next customer, works everytime


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