Urban Indians expect restaurants to remove service charges in the future
July 19th, 2022, Bhawna Singh

Urban Indians expect restaurants to remove service charges in the future

Half of the interested diners would actively seek removal of service charge from their bill while a quarter would avoid or completely stop dining at such restaurants

Recently, the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) barred hotels and restaurants from levying service charges automatically or by default on food bills, allowing customers to file complaints in case of violation.

The latest Realtime survey from YouGov reveals that three-quarters (74%) of urban Indians aware of the new guidelines say they would actively demand the removal of service charges if imposed by hotels/restaurants in the future. While one in five (20%) remained unsure, a mere 6% said they are unlikely to do so. Adults aged 30+ are more likely than those aged 18-29 to say they would have service charges removed from their bills in the future (77% vs 69%).

A restaurant bill comprises the cost of food items (the amount mentioned on the menu), GST, and a service charge (payment for the services rendered but not imposed by the government. In general, when making a payment at a restaurant, more than half (53%) of urban Indians said they actively check the entire bill including taxes. Half of this proportion of respondents (23%) simply check the final amount and pay the bill, while less than one in five (17%) check the whole bill (including taxes) only when the amount is on the higher side.

When it comes to future dining decisions, nearly half of urban Indians (49%) said that they would dine at a restaurant adding a service tax to the bill, but would demand it be removed. 17% of respondents do not mind paying the amount while 11% are unsure of their decision.

A quarter, however, plans to take severe action and will refrain from dining at restaurants that levy any service charge.

Data was collected online among 1004 urban respondents in India by YouGov’s Omnibus between July 5th-8th, 2022 using YouGov’s panel of over 20 million people worldwide