Which industry has the most egregious surcharges? Airlines have added some surprisingly sneaky fees over the years and were recently in the news again for considering charging extra for overweight people. One airline, Ryanair, seems to take pride in its fees and even contemplated adding a cost to use the bathroom. Not that hotels have been kind; $8 water bottles and $40 parking spots are as common as charging for Wi-Fi. But restaurants and bars, in my estimation, have developed the most crafty ways to squeeze profit out of that which was once - and should still be - gratis.
I made a list of every “extra” charge I’ve ever heard of (16 examples came to mind and I’m sure there are more) and separated them into two categories: those that seem warranted (like charging for shaved truffles on an entrée) and those that seem brazenly unnecessary and unfair (like charging extra for ketchup).
Below is my definitive list of potential offenses with reasoned assessments of the fairness quotient of each, based purely on personal opinion.
Splitting a dish/extra side dish
Splitting the check
Cocktail neat/on the rocks
Food waste/not finishing what's on the plate
Non-bottled (sometimes filtered) tap water
Extra Charges I Understand
Bread and butter/chips and salsa
Eating at prime time
Tips for large groups
Access to the room with live music
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