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17th Jul 2023

Woman charged for listening to live music at a restaurant

Joseph Loftus

They’ll start charging people to use the toilets next

Ever been scammed? I have. Once. Just once. I’ll set the scene for you.

Florence, Italy. The locals call it Firenze. Summer of 2016. Love was in the air and we’d just descended the 463 steps of Duomo de Firenze. Dripping in sweat. Across the old square. My ex eyes up an ice cream shop. “Let’s go”, I say. I should’ve foresaw the warning signs. The frowning man with his scoop. The lack of a price list. Nowhere in sight. But I was too hot to care. Sweat was dripping into my lips.

We got two cones. One each. They’re leaking by the time we get the counter. A smiling woman says: “25 euros.” I smile. I wipe my forehead. I pay. A tear forms and falls onto my cheek. I was scammed. I was broken. It happens.

But anyway, enough about me. This is the story of another woman who has found herself in the news recently who feels she has been scammed too.

After going to a nearby restaurant for food, this group of women got their bill at the end of the night only to notice a surcharge of $8 each for live music.

Explaining in a Reddit post, they wrote: “GF and her friends were charged for live music at a restaurant. Is this a new thing? Never come across this before.”

Surprisingly a few people actually did come forward saying they had experienced this before. News to me.

One person commented: “We did this at a restaurant I worked at. We had music every night and the menu stated there was an $8 cover charge per person when there was music playing. The money went right to the musician(s). Nobody ever complained, the key was having signs everywhere.”

Another person added: “Cover charge for listening to live music has been around for years but they normally collect fees at the door. However, people don’t really carry cash now so they add it to the bill instead.

A third wrote: “It’s effectively a door cover charge. I wouldn’t sweat it as long as the band was good and the charge was announced upfront.”

However many others explained that they’d be downright furious if they got charged for such a thing as this, writing: “Nope not paying that unless I knew about it up front and then would happily pay it.”

A second wrote: “What if you didn’t even go there for the live music and went for the food and there happened to be live music? Yea, I wouldn’t be happy with this.”

How would you feel about this? Musicians should definitely be paid but adding it to the bill? Debatable.