Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Independent, UK Britain's restaurants are creaming off millions of pounds of customers' tips to boost their profits, an investigation by The Independent has found. A series of legal ploys are being used by major companies including Strada, PizzaExpress and Carluccio's to take a slice of the L4bn a year that diners leave for low-paid staff in tips.

Among the practices, TheIndependent found:

- Carluccio's, Cafe Rouge, Chez Gerard, Strada and Cafe Uno all pay their staff less than the minimum wage and use customers' tips to make up the balance in their employees' pay;

- Pizza Express takes an 8 per cent cut of tips left on a credit card;

- One chain of Asian restaurants, Georgetown, takes 100 per cent of tips;

- Staff at one London eatery receive no basic wage at all.


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