Let’s say, hypothetically, that a regular latte at Starbucks costs $2.65. Let’s say that there’s a separate menu item posted called “Vanilla Latte” and it costs $2.95. Let’s also say that a regular latte with “syrup” (vanilla, for example) is $2.65 plus $0.30, or $2.95. Why then does a “Vanilla Latte” cost reader Jayne $3.25?
On two different occasions, I have visited a particular Starbucks and ordered a Vanilla Latte, priced at $2.95. Twice now, I have been charged an extra $.30 for the vanilla flavoring, bringing the price of my $2.95 drink up to $3.25.
The first time, I let it go, thinking it was a simple mistake and hey, it was only $.30. But then, the same thing happened today. I politely asked the cashier why I was being charged extra for the vanilla in my Vanilla Latte (a Vanilla Latte is a separate menu item, priced exactly $.30 higher than a plain latte with no flavor). The cashier looked at me as if I was crazy and said, “Well ma’am, you ordered a Vanilla Latte”, as if that was supposed to make it all clear. I explained that had I ordered a plain latte and asked for an added shot of vanilla, I could understand the extra charge. But, the cashier was having none of my logic. I asked for a manager and when I was told that one was not available I gave up, sensing this was an argument I wasn’t going to win.
Think about how many people go to Starbucks on a daily basis for their drink of choice. Now, imagine that Starbucks overcharges each and every one of those people, just $.30 or so, each time. How many of those people do you think would notice or complain? Starbucks is probably making a killing off of their regular customers who just swipe their cards or fork over the cash without a second thought. Just as a warning, if it happened to me twice in a week, it might be happening to others out there as well. Make sure you’re being charged for exactly what you ordered!
We think that if it says “Vanilla Latte $2.95” and you order “Vanilla Latte,” you should get it for $2.95.
If a store isn’t charging you the posted price for what you’ve ordered, you should report it to their corporate headquarters, and if they don’t take care of it, your attorney general. You may be thinking, “There’s no way our attorney general will give a crap about me being overcharged $0.30 a few times.” You’re probably right. However, you should know that San Diego’s AG busted Baskin Robbins for shorting people on their so-called “pints” of ice cream, so you never know what will interest an AG…
(Photo: Travelin’ Librarian )