Friday, May 24, 2024
Friday May 24, 2024
Friday May 24, 2024

Controversial twist in Chicago eatery bill sparks debate: Customers footing the bill for server health insurance



Diners divided as restaurant adds surprise charge to support employee well-being

In an unexpected turn of events, a Chicago eatery named Giant has stirred controversy by itemizing a $5.65 charge on its bills, designated for the server’s health insurance. The move has ignited a heated debate online, leaving customers and netizens divided over the ethics of such a practice.

The contentious bill surfaced on the ‘Mildly Interesting’ thread on Reddit, revealing an itemized breakdown that included the customary tax and total charges, along with the unexpected addition of a mandatory $5.65 contribution towards the server’s health insurance.

While tipping generously and paying taxes are widely accepted norms in dining culture, this fresh approach to sharing the burden of health insurance costs has raised eyebrows. Social media exploded with speculations about why diners were seemingly covering the server’s health insurance, a responsibility typically shouldered by employers.

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One astute reader calculated the apparent cost, suggesting, “Given they’re charging as a percentage based on the cost of the meal, and health insurance is a fixed rate per month per employee.” Another humorously speculated on additional fees, saying, “Next up: Property tax fee – 8%, Power & Water Utility fee – 3%, CEO Bonus fee – 22%, Doubling the Profit fee – 200%.”

Amidst the divided opinions, some users proposed practical solutions, with one suggesting, “Fair enough, 5% less tip, problem solved.” Another expressed a willingness to pay extra for a societal cause, stating, “I’d gladly pay an extra 5 dollars on all of my transactions [sic] totals in this country if it gave people health care.”

Adding a layer of complexity to the debate, a commenter provided context, claiming that the health insurance charge is openly disclosed on the menu and the restaurant’s online platforms, stating it has been a practice “since it opened.”

Shocked reactions extended beyond the health insurance charge, with some customers expressing disbelief at the overall pricing, including $13 for ice cream and $19 for scallops.

According to information from the Chicago Eatery, the restaurant distributes the insurance cost into thirds, with the company and employees each contributing one-third. To recover the total expense, customers face a 2 percent subcharge on their meals.

Surprisingly, the restaurant claims to have encountered no backlash from customers, citing positive feedback regarding the subcharge. Giant’s ownership asserts that this unique insurance offer contributes to making the establishment a better dining experience while ensuring the well-being of their staff.


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