Tourist in Italy left fuming after being charged 20 euros to slice a cake | World | News


A restaurant in the heart of Palermo, Italy, has garnered attention after a group of people were charged an extra 20 euros for the cutting and serving of a birthday cake.

The cake in question was not procured directly from the pizzeria but was brought in by patrons who had purchased it from an external bakery.

Customers of the establishment were surprised to find an itemised entry on their bill reading “20 x cake service,” equating to one euro per person seated at the table, irrespective of whether they ate the dessert.

The cake service is a widespread practice in many Italian restaurants, both in Palermo and elsewhere.

It involves allowing customers to bring a dessert from home to celebrate a special occasion, such as birthdays, anniversaries, or graduations.

The restaurant takes care of cutting and serving the dessert at the tables, either at no additional cost, with a symbolic fee, or a fee proportional to the number of guests.

In Palermo as well, the cake service should be a gesture of courtesy and flexibility on the part of the restaurant, foregoing selling their own desserts to accommodate the customers.

Simultaneously, it’s an opportunity for cost savings and personalisation for the customers, who can choose their favorite dessert and pay less compared to the restaurant’s menu.

However, the cake service also presents a paradox: while advantageous for both parties on one hand, on the other hand, it creates expectations and inconsistencies.

Customers, as in Palermo, expect the cake service to be free or nearly so, considering the dessert as a gift to the restaurant rather than a product to purchase.

Yet, restaurants incur costs to provide the cake service, such as personnel, materials, and waste disposal.

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