Yes, I’d absolutely tell the waitress. In fact, not too long ago, the hubby and I had dinner at the local pub and our drinks had not been added to the tab. I didn’t realize the omission at first, because the pub owner just tells us the amount due and we never see an actual bill. But by the time he handed over the change for the total he had quoted, my mental calculator had finished tallying what I thought the approximate cost of our meals should have been, and I mentioned that I thought the total had been too low for what we had ordered. He checked, and sure enough, the drinks had not been rung up. As I turned over the cash for the remaining balance, the owner thanked me profusely and repeatedly for my honesty; it had never crossed my mind to walk out knowing I hadn’t paid for something I had consumed.
On the other hand, I would just as quickly tell the waitress if we had been overcharged for our meal. Just a couple weeks ago, we dined at a Mexican restaurant in Amsterdam (if you are looking for good Mexican food, Amsterdam is not the place to get it). Overall, prices in Amsterdam were steeper than we are used to (which is saying a lot, because England isn’t cheap), so I expected the bill to be high. But when the check came, I glanced half-heartedly at the total as I laid down our credit card, and nearly dislocated my shoulder snatching the card back–the bottom line was twice what I had roughly estimated it should have been! Looking closely at the itemized tab, I discovered that the entire meal ordered by the neighboring table had been entered into the register along with our items. While I dream of someday anonymously buying a restaurant meal for a randomly selected stranger/family, the gluttonous couple at the next table did not fit the profile I had envisioned as the beneficiaries of a free meal. We flagged the waitress over and she immediately and profusely apologized when I pointed out the extra charges. With the owner’s help, the bill was corrected and we settled our tab, then walked out into the cold Dutch night vowing not to cross the thresholds of any more Mexican restaurants until we leave Europe.
Now that my mom has returned to the States, I’m back on my normal blogging schedule, which means today is Deep Thought Thursday. Gregory Stock’s The Book of Questions provides the inspiration for this weekly feature.