COVID-19 surcharges cropping up as businesses try to recover

National and World

One restaurant in Wisconsin is trying to offset the losses by putting a COVID-19 surcharge on the bill


Credit: Vostok/Moment/Getty Images

(WKBN) – As businesses begin to reopen and grapple with the losses from being closed, along with the expense of creating a safe environment for customers during the pandemic, many are looking at ways to recoup some of those hefty losses.

Many businesses are reducing staff, and some of those temporary layoffs could stretch out for months or longer, according to economists.

Nearly 36 million laid-off workers have applied for unemployment benefits as the business shutdowns caused by the viral outbreak deepened the worst U.S. economic catastrophe in decades.

Restaurants are especially vulnerable when it comes to a population that may be wary of dining inside an establishment with a group of strangers amid the pandemic.

One restaurant in Wisconsin is trying to offset the losses by putting a COVID-19 surcharge on the bill.

Local media there reported that a customer took to social media to complain about the practice. It was just $1, but it is causing a reaction – both against and in support of the business. Some are outraged while others are sympathetic.

The Wisconsin restaurant isn’t alone. Another restaurant in San Diego started doing the same thing. Others are sure to follow.

Surcharges aren’t anything new. Airlines do it when gas prices surge and shipping companies are also adding extra charges during the pandemic to offset costs.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has provided a toolkit for businesses to help them navigate operations during these unprecedented times. The information includes details about loans, CDC guidelines, and best practices during the pandemic.

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