Restaurants forced to charge temporary inflation fees

HONOLULU (KHON2) – Notice an extra charge on a restaurant receipt? Well, that’s what happened to a Honolulu resident and her friends.

The group told KHON2 that they dined in at Romano’s Macaroni Grill and said the extra charge was unexpected.

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“She saw it on her receipt, a surprise tacking on price of a temporary inflation fee,” said Honolulu resident Lana. “She did not know what that really was, but she paid her bill.”

Romano’s Macaroni Grill’s website does have a disclaimer about the new fee, citing pressures of inflation and rising prices. The company said this fee helps partially offset operational cost increases.

“We’ve had some fuel surcharges start to show up from people all over, from the shipping and delivery vendors who are just trying to pass on temporarily those kinds of expenses for them as well trying not to raise their prices to a permanent level. ”

Greg Maples, Hawaii Restaurant Association

Customers are also wondering how long the temporary inflation fees will last. Hawaii Restaurant Association (HRA) said the answer is unknown as prices for almost all goods have gone up again by 40%.

“We have fixed expenses like our rent, our salaries, taxes, the cost of doing business along with the food and supplies,” said Sheryl Matsuoka of HRA. “If they do not raise their prices, they will not be able to pay their bills, because they are not going to make any money.”

Eateries will drop the temporary inflation fee once fuel and prices on goods stabilize acceding to HRA. For now, it’s asking restaurants and customers to be patient with each other.

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“I think we owe it to them to say something, maybe it’s just a little handout. Maybe it’s something you put in their bag that kind of explains the situation, ”said Maples. “I think most people will understand it there. Everybody’s feeling it. ”

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