We all know that Singapore is full of good ramen restaurants. It's quite an achievement for one to stand out from the crowd. I first tried this place three months ago and fell in love with the food. The last time, I received a one-for-one voucher for next visit.
I recently visited it again on 23 Feb thinking I'll use the one-for-one since I miss a good bowl of ramen. I had to takeaway. I checked the voucher and it didnt specify dine-in only (which some restaurants do). I visited this outlet and when i presented the voucher for takeaway, they flatly refused to.
I spoke to the manager and asked why they were refusing to honour the voucher when their terms did not state dine-in only. She said it was the restaurant's internal policy. I politely explained that even if that were the case, a customer has no way to know their internal policy. The only way is for them to spell it out on the voucher. Further, the voucher did not say that the management could change the terms of it. It is trite that if you give customers your word (through your promotions), you abide by it.
Nevertheless, they refused to acknowledge that they are breaking their promise and flatly denied my takeaway request. I was disappointed but decided I would just buy one bowl for takeaway.
This is where the story gets worse. After I paid, I checked my receipt and realised that they were charging 10% service charge. This amounted to $1.35. I clarified why service charge was imposed for takeaway since there is no table service to speak of. The manager then said that it was surcharge for takeaway boxes. I was quite distrubed because most resturants wouldn't charge a takeaway charge if you bag your food. Nevertheless, I asked her whether it was in the menu. The manager herself admitted that it was not. I pointed out that you shouldnt charge for things you dont spell out to your customers. She didn't care. Leaving me with no recourse, I just accepted that I had been conned into paying $1.35 for two ordinary plastic boxes that hawker centres use.
Santouka ramen, you are one of the leading names around. It is disappointing that you resort to unfair consumer practices. Whether I return ever again depends on how you respond to this (if at all).