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Coffee refills

I just saw a US credit card commercial in which the server walks around a restaurant asking people if they want coffee refills, but doesn't mention that they will be charged for them.

Is it common or becoming more common not to offer free refills on coffee in the US ? How many people ask or check the menu verbiage about the charge on coffee refills ?

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  1. <Is it common or becoming more common not to offer free refills on coffee in the US ? >

    I think it's exactly as common as it's always been, which is to say not very common. A place where a server walks around from table to table with a coffee pot is offering free refills. There may be exceptions, but I've never encountered one. I haven't seen the commercial you refer to, but it is likely presenting this kind of situation as beyond the pale.

    1. I have never been to a "sit down" restaurant where I was charged for a coffee refill.

      1. I've seen some places that have a sign posted that tells the price of refills. But, it is very uncommon.
        The commercial is making a point about hidden charges on the credit card, like one would NOT expect to pay for a refill sort of message, one would not expect some of these charges on their credit card bill.

        1 Reply
        1. re: wyogal

          Of course, you're right. I guess I found the first part so odd, I drifted off mentally on what the point of the commercial was.

        2. I would not consider this typical even within fine dining.

          1. not sure what the comment should be.
            some places offer refills but for instance don't expect a coffee refill in Hawaii if you're having breakfast at a restaurant other than maybe IHOP or "ennys"..........fill in first letter

            1 Reply
            1. re: iL Divo

              Huh? They give free refills at all sit down places usually.

            2. I have been to one sit-down restaurant that charged for refills, and they were closed within 6 months. The service was so deplorable they should not have lasted one month. I still remember overhearing one lady's comment when told there were no free refills. "Not even warm-ups?" she asked, as if there was discernible difference between "warm-ups" and "refills".

              2 Replies
              1. re: Jeebs

                Wouldn't a warm-up be a splash of hot coffee in a partially drunk cup, while a refill would be a filling of an empty cup?

                1. re: Jeebs

                  How/when did that restaurant let customers know there were no free refills ?

                2. I've never been anyplace that charged you for refills on regular coffee outside of a coffee shop. If it's a specialty coffee, like an espresso or something, no, but regular drip coffee in a table service restaurant? Have never heard of being charged for a coffee refill, even in a nicer restaurant.

                  1. I agree that I've only seen it when you're getting really high end coffee. Especially when they are making that coffee to order (french press, for example?).