A stitch in time would have confused Einstein.

~ Author Unknown ~

Starbucks Hidden Fee and Other Sneaky Business

July 20th, 2012 ~ Est. reading time: 1 min, 50 secs

If you feel like you’re spending money for nothing, you might be right.

Ah yes, the Starbucks hidden fee trick. Back in 2011, US based Starbucks charged a hidden additional $1.50 fee on half pound/250gm bags of coffee. Sneaky. The US Division of Standards certainly wasn’t impressed and charged the company $1575, for deceptive practice. Hardly a savage fine. If anything, more like a slap across the wrist with a wet tram ticket. But I expect Starbucks got its comeuppance through the bad press it generated.

You have to watch out for these little scams, don’t you? Starbucks hidden fee is just the tip of the iceberg of numerous cons, intended to shave off extra money from you at every opportunity. The hidden extras like gratuities, taxes, so-called deluxe service charges, gobbledygook hiding nefarious fees, and on it goes. Sometimes, it’s enough to make you choke on your chewy (that’s chewing gum in Aussie speak).

At risk of getting money-obsessed or paranoid about numerous little scams and ploys, it pays to be sensible and also philosophical. Somewhere, someone’s going to tickle too much money out of you for too little service. But then, you also need to balance out all the genuine discounts, service, and generosity you’ve been given too. So the Starbucks hidden fee diddles you out of a few dollars. But the discount you got on your groceries probably covered it.

Misleading business practices like Starbucks hidden fee for bagged coffee shouldn’t happen. But if we lived in a world of shoulds we’d really be living a hypothetical life. Companies, like people, are prone to mislead and misappropriate, unless they own values strong enough to guide their conduct.

Starbucks hidden fee is hardly crime of the century, and it must be said that in many places, the price of anything is a rather rubbery thing; depending on how rich you look. I discovered that first hand while working in a camera store as a young man. The boss thought nothing of abusing his lifelong friends by charging them double for photographic equipment. His deceitfulness was confronting. But, it’s for people like him that we need to exercise care. Whether it’s a secret fee, a misleading price, or something else questionable, check. If you have even a whisker twitch of doubt, trust your judgment. But if you find yourself scammed in a minor way, be ready to do two important things:

  1. Let it go and chalk it up to experience, and
  2. Vote with your feet by never giving that business your custom again.

Even The Queen Knows Ethical Practice Is Simply Good Business

Is A Scam?

The Slow Food Eating Clean Swindle


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