We need a "buyers beware" list or something

I know Taiwan depends a lot on connections, problem is when you are a forigner or ABC chances are you wont have any. It makes it really easy to get scammed when you dont even know what 's up. I have been to a few shops that just absolutely robs you blind. Especially those “buffet” places. A lot of things are a total mystery, like you get some food, then surprised to find your bill comes to 200 or more NT, and you barely even got enough for a kid to eat! You ask the guys who works there how much things are, and they act like they dont know… I know of one near shui fu road, the new one that just opened. It is in danshui. I got 3 meatless things, with a tiny bowl of rice, 50NT, doesnt come with soup (that is extra). Most other places at least offer free soup and tea… and costs the same for the same kind of food. This is just plain wrong…

I seriously think we need a buyers beware and “good business” list, sorted by type (restraunts, night markets, whatever) so that formosans will know which places to look out for when buying stuff.

simply NEVER go back to anyplace that has cheated you. and yes a list would be great

hi. i noticed that you were saying to be cheated in buffet restaurants.

actually, a lot of buffet restaurants in taiwan will automatically add gratuity (10%) into your bill
and they consider kids who are over particular height (for example, 120cm) to adult customers,
or kids not over the particular height will be charged as half of adults.

most of times it will be posted on the front door or in the menu of that restaurant.
(unfortunately maybe they are only be written in chinese)

the way to avoid this kind of problem is to ask staff there first before your order.
for example, “do you charge 服務費(fu wu fei) / 小費 (xiao fei)”?
or check up websites of that restaurant first to make sure if they have this kind of rules. :slight_smile:

The buffets I’ve been to here - the little lunch ones, that is - have been completely crazy, but not malicious. We would all get roughly the same thing and be charged totally different prices, or get the exact same thing two days in a row for different prices.

I don’t think it has anything to do with being a foreigner though - my prices were lower than the Taiwanese guys as often as not. Besides which overall it was always cheap and good.

Anyhow, I’m not disagreeing that some places suck, I just don’t really believe the “they screw us for being foreign” thing in this case :wink:

There are three different buffets that I frequent for lunches. I’ve noticed that if I go to the same one too often, eventually the price starts to creep up. So I go to another one for a while. Then the price starts to creep up, so i hit number three for a while. When the price creeps up there, I go back to the first one, they’re happy to see me, and the price is as it should be.

i like those little buffet jobs too , but they seem to price by feel (like whatever they feel like at the moment)

I find it hard to believe that a restaurant could be subjectively charging their customers as suggested; they would be shooting themselves in the foot and jeopardizing their clientelle if they did.

Lots of restaurants have different and, sometimes very complicated sets/pricing schemes. For example, the basic set at a Mongolian hot pot restaurant that I went to last week was just broth. A little different from your average shabu shabu place where price only varies depending on what kind of meat you choose. However, they had every combination of meat anvegetables under the sun that could be added. It took a little thought to understand how it worked, but it was great; so many options.

As for buffets, are they really “chr dau bau” places or just biendang shops that offer a lot of different variety? Prices at these usually vary depending on what type of main you choose and how many different sides you add on. Some of the mom and pop jobs will adjust prices a little to reflect cost. After typhoon Nari a few years ago, a lot of the vegetable crops around the island were wiped out and prices for greens were higher. The increase was reflected across the board, from supermarkets to biendang shops. The thing to consider is that these places work on tiny profit margins, so any increase in cost is passed on to the consumer.

Generally, I can’t complain too much about a place that will give me a chicken leg or a pork chop and a choice of 3 different veg. even if the price changes from NT$70-80 every once in awhile. :idunno:

Caveat emptor: Find out what you are buying and how much it costs before you eat it! :wink:

I agree that they do. But I have the opposite experience. The more I go to a buffet the lower the price. The one near my house used to be near 100 and now never tops 50. Went in there with a friend once and my friend complained that his food was more expensive than mine. The laoban says “Your mom live here?” and my friend says “Yes.” Laoban says “Hers doesn’t”
Same sort of thing with the one next to work. Except instead of discounting, the “overlook” items. When they got a new ringer upper girl she charged me normal and the laoban told her not to.

If I have this kind of price discrimination (favorable) then I have absolutely no problem believing someone else gets the unfavorable kind.