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The curious case of the 0.1 per cent service charge

Businesses that try to get around displaying GST-inclusive prices would find that the rules are not quite so easy to circumvent.

EARLIER this year, readers may have been shocked to read about a coffeeshop zi char chain which imposed a 0.1 per cent service charge on its dine-in customers. The service charge was applied from 1 August 2022 and lasted a mere two weeks before it was reversed due to “customers’ reactions”. The move prompted considerable debate about the reasonableness of a stall in a coffeeshop imposing a service charge and what level of service could be expected to justify such a charge.

Beyond the shock factor of coffeeshop stall deciding to impose a service charge, another curious issue was the rate of the charge, at 0.1 per cent. At such a rate, the revenue derived from the service charge would be...

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