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India bars hotels, restaurants from levying service charge 

Restaurants often add a 5% to 15% tip to a customer's bill under a "service charge" category.

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India bars hotels, restaurants from levying service charge 
GNN Media: Representational Photo

New Delhi: India’s Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA) has banned hotels and restaurants from levying a service charge on bills by default. 

According to details, the order came after authorities said there had been an increase in complaints by customers being forced to pay the charge.  

Restaurants often add a 5% to 15% tip to a customer's bill under a "service charge" category.

The announcement now gives an enforceable shape to the government’s directions on the matter: the practice of levying service charges by default has now been defined as an ‘unfair trade practice’, by the consumer protection authority—a regulatory body set up in 2019. 

The new guidelines also bar restaurants from collecting tips from customers "under any other name" or "deny service or entry to customers who refuse to pay a tip". 

Moreover, under the new guidelines, consumers can lodge their complaints online or through the National Consumer Helpline.   

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