Would you charge a 'cakeage' fee at your pub?
Yes - less than £108%
Yes - more than £107%
Only for big groups3%
We already do5%
Some licensees felt charging a ‘cakeage’ for guests celebrating a birthday or anniversary, for example, could be seen as “greedy” while others explained they already do this in “most cases”.
Owner of the Onslow Arms in Loxwood, West Sussex, Rob Barr, explained the pub does not charge a fee for celebratory cakes brought in by customers but urged they should always ask permission prior to arrival.
He said: “I can see why some venues do [charge]. But my view has always been usually guests have spent a fair bit already at our pubs.
“I'd also feel it could come across as slightly greedy without proper explanation. It would have to be a big culture change for it to be widely accepted.
“I'd much prefer to deliver a great experience and see repeat custom than charge a couple of pounds for a ‘cakeage’”.
This comes as food inflation continues to remain “incredibly challenging” for the sector, according to data from CGA, straining profit margins for many operators, in addition to a dip in consumer spending in pubs throughout July.
Price of a dessert
Chef patron of the Pyne Arms in Barnstaple, Devon, which is number 19 on the Estrella Damm Top 50 Gastropubs list, Ellis Pannel seconded Barr, stating most customers order dessert in addition to bringing a celebratory cake.
Though Pannel added he “wouldn’t mind” if he was charged a ‘cakeage’ fee when eating out.
However, the Blind Bull in Buxton, Derbyshire which is number 74 on the Top 50 Gastropubs list, said the venue does charge a ‘cakeage’ fee in “most cases.”
A representative for the pub said: “In most cases we would [charge a fee]. It would [usually] be the price of a dessert per head, approximately £9 per person.”