Author Topic: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...  (Read 3365 times)

jeromedawg

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5046
  • Age: 2018
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« on: June 24, 2019, 04:05:37 PM »
Hey all,

Just got back from vacation and last week while in Tortola this shady server padded our bill with like 5-6 additional items we didn't order. It was a large order with 14 of us on it so there were a lot of items. The server probably figured she could sneak in the extras without anyone noticing and it worked especially because we were in a rush to head out (since we wasted almost 2 hours at that tourist trap waiting for someone to take our order then even longer waiting for the food to come out) to get back onto the charter boat to finish the tour/excursion we were on. My brother paid with his credit card since we were in a rush to leave and he glanced over it without noticing the charges. While he was doing all this and about to sign, the server distracted him further by demanding additional tip on top of the 15% service charge (which she claimed didn't go to her at all). He called the card issuer (Chase) and they told him there's nothing they can really do since when they investigate the restaurant will just tell them "he signed for it" - but that's a bit hard to believe. I figure stuff like this probably happens or a regular basis and I'm sure people contest it too. I told him to call Chase back and speak with someone else - is there anything else he should do besides ripping this place on Yelp and Tripadvisor? This is a tricky situation because he did sign for it but at the same time he was rushed and the waitress was also distracting, pressuring and rushing him. I think she knew exactly what she was doing and was trying to capitalize on an easy opportunity to commit easy fraud.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2019, 04:09:51 PM by jeromedawg »

rantk81

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 839
  • Age: 41
  • Location: Chicago
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2019, 04:40:43 PM »
You could at least name-and-shame the place!

jeromedawg

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5046
  • Age: 2018
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2019, 04:43:32 PM »
You could at least name-and-shame the place!


Already ripped em on Yelp and Tripadvisor. Pirates Bight is the name of the institution, as a word of warning for any of you who might be heading out that way soon.

Frankies Girl

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3786
  • Age: 85
  • Location: The oubliette.
  • Ghouls Just Wanna Have Funds!
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2019, 05:07:09 PM »
Always, ALWAYS check your receipts before leaving, I insist on snapping a photo of the completed ticket with tip and total tabulated, and also make it an even number every time, or something unique going forward - like every single total must end in ".07" so the tip might be odd, but I can go to my bank for a dispute and say "as of XX date, I started adding the tip so the final total always equals .07. This disputed charge does not, and I can show you the image of the restaurant copy I left with the waitstaff. It gives you more ability to show that the restaurant is in the wrong if you establish some sort of proof.


Similar happened to my husband, but it was that he was with a few friends at a local bar after a concert. Friends were drinking, he wasn't. Ordered a single sandwich, tipped server 20% even tho they literally forgot him and never even refilled water glass. So let's say it was $10 + $2 tip. Total should have been $12.

The charge shows up a day later - $22. Somehow that $2 mysteriously had a "1" inserted in front of it. Making the tip higher than the total order. She must pull that crap all the time on latenight orders since most of the people in there are a bit drunk and likely won't remember exactly how much they ordered/tipped unless they are anal like we are.

We got freaked out for like 5 minutes, he located the bill, as he always writes down the total/tip on the extra copy and we wait to check it against the charge once it finalizes on our card online. Call the restaurant, speak with the manager. Explain that the waitress "mistakenly" added a ton of money to the tip line, and tell them this needs to be fixed. Manager apologies and tells him he will refund the whole thing but husband tells him to just change it to what it's supposed to be (give him a refund on the over-tip the waitress added "by mistake" and he'll be happy. Manager does so, because I suspect he could tell that the number was altered, or else they'd had complaints about this waitstaff before.

In any case, I'd suggest your first attack point is to contact the restaurant, with ticket in hand and politely but firmly insist that there were extras added to the order, likely they were for a table nearby and the waitress was confused/busy and got it on the wrong table. Insist (again, no namecalling/bitchy attitude, just explain firmly and politely that you are totally sorry you didn't notice this at the restaurant and it was so busy in there that it likely would be super easy for this sort of thing to happen, but you are very worried and concerned that you're being charged for items you didn't order/receive and can they please fix this?

If they flat out refuse, then you contact the card company, and dispute the charges. Brother is on shaky ground tho since he did have actual time to review the charges but didn't bother to do so carefully and still signed. All he can do is explain to the card issuer what you already said  and ask them what they can do about it. It's fraud, and terrible and I hope you did name the actual waitstaff as well (if you don't get the restaurant to make it right) but you should have contacted the restaurant FIRST and given them a chance to fix things before blasting the hell out of them on social media sites. How are they to know and deal with a crappy employee if you don't give them the opportunity first?
« Last Edit: June 24, 2019, 05:09:04 PM by Frankies Girl »

2Cent

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 731
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2019, 09:03:33 AM »
It sucks, but do you really think a few dollars are worth spending so much time and energy? Just learn your lesson and resolve to check better next time. Then let it go.

kitty_boos

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 8
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2019, 09:39:59 AM »
We also just got back from the same place.  Long story short we had to dispute the baggage credit card charge from one of the airlines. NEVER fly Seaborne!  Anyway, also on a Chase card. 

If he has set up an online account through Chase, just log in, select the charge and there should be a link(?) to dispute it. It'll ask a bunch of questions and you can also put in the exact dollar amount you want refunded. In our case, we were due a full refund.  In his case, minus out the bogus items.

Doing it this way, Chase automatically refunds the amount and the company, etc. has 35(?) days to respond.

wenchsenior

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3481
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2019, 11:24:06 AM »
You could at least name-and-shame the place!


Already ripped em on Yelp and Tripadvisor. Pirates Bight is the name of the institution, as a word of warning for any of you who might be heading out that way soon.

Pirate's Bight on Norman Island? Or is there one on Tortola as well?  I once had a beer at the original Pirate's Bight after doing a long day of biological surveys, but that was 10 years ago before the original bar burned down. ETA: I doubt I'll get to either Tortola or Norman this year when I'm down there, but it's a good heads-up either way.

slappy

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1400
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2019, 11:25:59 AM »
Why do you assume she "padded" the bill? It could have been an innocent mistake. How would it benefit her to pad the bill?

I had an issue recently where I stayed at a resort and there was a $70 meal charge on my tab that wasn't mine. I called them, explained the situation and they said it was relatively common and they reversed the charge immediately.

Catbert

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2715
  • Location: Southern California
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2019, 11:39:39 AM »
If something was fiddled on the credit card bill (e.g., outrageous trip or different amount than original restaurant bill) a dispute would be worth it.  In this case the problem was on the original restaurant bill,  How are you going to prove now that the bill you were present with and had a chance to review before paying is wrong now?

Waste of time to dispute.  Ripping them on TripAdvisor, etc is the best course of action. 

ThatGuy

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 186
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2019, 07:37:22 PM »
@Frankie's Girl, a waitress told me to always put a dollar sign in front of each of the numbers to make it difficult for anyone to alter the amounts. I guess she knew what she was talking about.

the_fixer

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1246
  • Location: Colorado
  • mind on my money money on my mind
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2019, 09:47:17 PM »
Well it did have the word pirate in the name....

Just saying lol

Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk


jeromedawg

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5046
  • Age: 2018
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2019, 10:54:13 AM »
Why do you assume she "padded" the bill? It could have been an innocent mistake. How would it benefit her to pad the bill?

I had an issue recently where I stayed at a resort and there was a $70 meal charge on my tab that wasn't mine. I called them, explained the situation and they said it was relatively common and they reversed the charge immediately.

We got some clarification after one of the managers reached out (after I posted the review) and contacted my brother. She explained that the server "mistakenly" billed our charter captain's (and his deckhand's) meals on our bill. Okay, sure - could have been an innocent mistake. But then lying that the 15% service charge doesn't go to her (the manager confirmed that it goes to the servers AND kitchen) and then guilt-tripping my brother into giving the additional tip - that doesn't sound so innocent. Also, if she's 'buddy-buddy' with the captain we went out with, she could have been trying to do him a favor by adding his meal to our tab on his behalf. So nothing about this really seems so innocent.

As far as the slowness of service, the excuse was that they were "slammed" and busy because the Disney Cruise was in town. Huh? There was only ONE ship in port in Tortola that day! And when we got there it actually wasn't that busy at all. It started getting busier 30 minutes after we ordered but there were tables open and half a dozen servers mostly just standing around. Hardly something I would call "busy" lol -maybe for "island life" but what do I know...*shrug*
Given that we were the only ship in port that day, I wonder what this place is like when there are 2 or more ships in port!!!

What's interesting is that my brother said the manager was *deeply* concerned about the review I left and wanted it updated or removed pending resolution of the issue. So I guess this tactic worked. I have no remorse or regret for slamming a place on Yelp, Tripadvisor, etc, when even one of their waitstaff does something shady...IMHO this is the most direct form of accountability

BTW: Pirate's Bight is on Norman Island, not Tortola... my mistake!
« Last Edit: June 26, 2019, 10:59:58 AM by jeromedawg »

jeromedawg

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5046
  • Age: 2018
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2019, 11:02:33 AM »
It sucks, but do you really think a few dollars are worth spending so much time and energy? Just learn your lesson and resolve to check better next time. Then let it go.

$97~ (which was the captains tab + extra tip my brother was guilted into giving, especially when her service was crap: checking on us a total of 2-3 times after ordering and during the 2 hour event) isn't "a few dollars"
« Last Edit: June 26, 2019, 11:06:49 AM by jeromedawg »

Car Jack

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2058
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2019, 11:17:21 AM »
I haven't been to this restaurant or to Tortola but have been around the Caribbean.  On many islands, the service charge is NOT a tip.  It's customary on these islands and goes to pay for labor, so while some of it goes to the waitress, it's simply paying her hourly wage.  It is also customary to add a tip.  An example place where I remember this being the case for sure is on St Martin.  Service around the Caribbean is also customarily slow.  Many, many places lack the American culture to get in, get the eating done and get out as soon as possible and for restaurants to mainly want to turn tales.  Coming in at 1 for a late lunch and not leaving until 5 isn't uncommon.  So if you walk in at 12:15 and absolutely need to be out of there by 12:45, then just order a bag of potato chips and run to your next activity.

I would certainly side with you on the addition of other people's meals.  Consider that the crew might have told the server "put it on their bill" and perhaps they're the ones who ripped you off.

I'll also add that because the 15% service charge is so common, there are restaurants (I remember several specifically in Aruba) where they state right on the menus that they do not add a service charge.  Then they say to tip your wait staff according to how well you were served.

I have had one time I can remember where my girlfriend (now wife) and I went for a rare, fancy dinner at the top of the Pru in Boston while we were both students.  This was at a time where I wore a suit to fit in there.  I paid with a credit card but left the tip in cash.  When the cc bill came, I probably only charged 3 things that month and matched slips to the statement.  The waitress had added a tip.  I talked with the manager who said to come in.  I did with my receipt and statement.  They paid me back in cash and said that this particular waitress had been fired for various things.


jeromedawg

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5046
  • Age: 2018
  • Location: Orange County, CA
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2019, 11:32:56 AM »
I haven't been to this restaurant or to Tortola but have been around the Caribbean.  On many islands, the service charge is NOT a tip.  It's customary on these islands and goes to pay for labor, so while some of it goes to the waitress, it's simply paying her hourly wage.  It is also customary to add a tip.  An example place where I remember this being the case for sure is on St Martin.  Service around the Caribbean is also customarily slow.  Many, many places lack the American culture to get in, get the eating done and get out as soon as possible and for restaurants to mainly want to turn tales.  Coming in at 1 for a late lunch and not leaving until 5 isn't uncommon.  So if you walk in at 12:15 and absolutely need to be out of there by 12:45, then just order a bag of potato chips and run to your next activity.

I would certainly side with you on the addition of other people's meals.  Consider that the crew might have told the server "put it on their bill" and perhaps they're the ones who ripped you off.

I'll also add that because the 15% service charge is so common, there are restaurants (I remember several specifically in Aruba) where they state right on the menus that they do not add a service charge.  Then they say to tip your wait staff according to how well you were served.

I have had one time I can remember where my girlfriend (now wife) and I went for a rare, fancy dinner at the top of the Pru in Boston while we were both students.  This was at a time where I wore a suit to fit in there.  I paid with a credit card but left the tip in cash.  When the cc bill came, I probably only charged 3 things that month and matched slips to the statement.  The waitress had added a tip.  I talked with the manager who said to come in.  I did with my receipt and statement.  They paid me back in cash and said that this particular waitress had been fired for various things.

Thanks! In this case, it sounds like the service charge is in fact a tip but because it's split between the kitchen and waitstaff, or is divided evenly, she only sees a smaller piece of the pie. The prices they charge for food is higher on average and they are the only restaurant on the island as part of the resort, so the overhead can't be that much. The other thing is that they seem to acknowledge they are a common lunch stop for cruise ships and *admitted* the slow service/wait times attributing it to the fact that a cruise ship is in town... It seems like this is a popular lunch stop for people coming off cruise ships on charters, so I think the explanation is just blowing smoke. I'd understand if it's a lunch spot in a lazy beach town in Mexico but this isn't exactly that - they have to know that a large number of clientele are coming in off charters (and cruises) and have limited time to stick around. Even the charter captain claimed "usually they aren't this slow" - so something doesn't add up...
I did think that the crew could have told her to put it on our bill...or that they were in cahoots. The thing is, our bill was *huge* because it was for 14 people. So whether the waitress or crew, I wouldn't be surprised if there was some form of "just sneak it onto their bill - they won't see it" going on.

Frankies Girl

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3786
  • Age: 85
  • Location: The oubliette.
  • Ghouls Just Wanna Have Funds!
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #15 on: June 26, 2019, 11:48:27 AM »
@Frankie's Girl, a waitress told me to always put a dollar sign in front of each of the numbers to make it difficult for anyone to alter the amounts. I guess she knew what she was talking about.


Already do that. I waited tables a few years in high school/college. I know all the stupid shit that used to happen, which is why I suggested what I did - contact management and then go social media (which is a great option but can be abused unfortunately by jerk customers). The waitress that padded her tip in my story did so at risk of losing her job because I'm pretty sure there was no way she could have added a "1" without it being IN the dollar sign $, indicating she did it, not the husband.

I also write in the tip line "CASH ON TABLE" if we do that route.

Genuine jerk thieves will still find a way to steal tho.


OP - glad to hear they contacted your brother, but if he does change his review, I would still make mention of a "mistake" on the bill, but management reached out after you posted about it on Yelp.

You want folks to still be aware that their waitstaff are either bad at math or (really) padding their bills so to be aware if they go there that this could happen and be very careful going over their final tally. Totally removing the bill pad/suspicious activity means they get to keep doing this sort of crap.

I would modify the review is left up as: the waitress (Jane) got confused and added extra items to our bill from another party and mistakenly told us that we had an extra gratuity added for our group. I was really disappointed about the mistakes we discovered after reviewing the bill later, but the management reached out to us after we mentioned this in a previous review and fixed things up for us.

Samuel

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 712
  • Location: the slippery slope
Re: Shady waitresss padded the bill with extra items...
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2019, 09:37:49 AM »
Explain that the waitress "mistakenly" added a ton of money to the tip line, and tell them this needs to be fixed. Manager apologies and tells him he will refund the whole thing but husband tells him to just change it to what it's supposed to be (give him a refund on the over-tip the waitress added "by mistake" and he'll be happy.

Side note: I really love seeing personal ethics and strong character in action. 99% of people would have taken the full refund (which is a perfectly defensible position, the restaurant did employ someone shady and wants to rehabilitate their reputation), but saying "I ordered the food, I ate the food, I'll pay the agreed upon price for the food" is the kind of high level integrity I aspire to.