Thursday, January 9, 2014

Are local businesses ripping us off?

Last night I was in the city and stopped by a Thai Restaurant for a bite to eat. We ordered a Massaman curry and a Nasi seafood. Both dishes we'd order locally. The restaurant was one of those small shop front restaurants in Swanston Street. The cans of drink were $2.50. We had table service and the staff were pleasant. This isn't fine dining but it is quite acceptable.

It made me think about Noodle Box in Doncaster East and the Thai restaurants I order takeaway food from in Templestowe. I received two large prawns in the Nasi seafood, an excellent tasting dish at a sit down restaurant for $9.90. With Noodle Box in Doncaster East if I order the Nasi seafood, I'm actually lucky to get a prawn at all (I have complained in the past, but now given up) and the Nasi without the prawns is around $13. A local Massaman curry takeaway is likely to cost around $14.

I remember one local businessman saying he charged local customers more because he was convenient for them and paid his staff less because they didn't have to travel as far. It feels to me like local businesses in the suburbs are overcharging because they can. I'm all for supporting local businesses but if they aren't providing as a good as value as you can get elsewhere it does make you question their business model. A sit down restaurant in the city charging much less than a quick takeaway in the suburbs simply doesn't make sense.

Kelvin Eldridge
Ph: 0415 910 703

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