Wahica a restaurant chain the=at serves Mexican-style street food in the UK has been forced to review its customer eat-and-run policy after a waiter was allegedly asked to hand over money when a bill was left unpaid.
They don’t happen often, but believe it or not, eat-and-run incidents still happen these days and a tweet which expressed concern over Wahica’s policy of making a waiter pay when customers do a runner brought all the wrong kind of attention on this UK restaurant chain.
A customer took to twitter to complain that a waiter feared being made to pay when customers ducked out of the Kentish branch without paying because of company policy.
The original tweet claimed that “Ppl next to us left without paying and their server is made to foot the bill from his wages. Apparently company policy. Utterly shameful employment practice.”
Hi @wahaca just eaten in your Kentish Town restaurant for the last time.
Ppl next to us left without paying and their server is made to foot the bill from his wages. Apparently company policy. Utterly shameful employment practice.
Food's great, company is crap.@thomasinamiers
BBC reports that Whahica claims waiters only had to foot the bill for walk outs if there was a case of "real negligence" and added that this was not the case with the incident that occurred. Wahaca said the incident was caused by an "internal communications issue" which has now been resolved.
In light of the recent incident where customers walked out of one of our restaurants without paying, we realise that our policy on how to deal with this has not been clear enough and we apologise to our teams for this. You can read more here: https://www.wahaca.co.uk/walkouts/
The days when managers dig into waiting staff’s tips to cover till shortfalls or walk-outs should be well and truly gone. When you tip a waiter for good service you would think that the tip goes diretly to the waietre on top of their wages and not as a contribution to their hourly rate. That is not always the case and restaurants have for years manipulated the tipping situation to their advantage.
Proposed legislation in the Republic of Ireland would require a restaurant to clearly display their tips policy for customers to read or they could face fines of up to €2,300.
In the US lawmakers in at least ten states- Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island, have broached legislation to eliminate the ‘tipped minimum wage’ and to bring up in line with the full minimum.