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  #1  
Old 05-06-2012, 07:04 AM
septimus septimus is offline
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Is Asinine Parsimony an especially American thing?

U.S. airlines used to be fun to fly. Free food; free booze; overweight luggage was usually OK especially if you smile at the check-in station. Now prices are driven down by shoppers trying to save a dollar, so the airlines have to make up for it by charging for movies and soft drinks.

Filling your gas tank used to be pleasant. An attendant would wash your windows and check your oil. It would cost a bit more but ... hey! There's an unemployment problem today anyway. If Americans don't want to spend an extra 20 cents per gallon financing the Liberul Welfare State, why not spend it subsidizing our unemployed young?

Where I live in Asia, airlines and gas stations are still full-service ... service which comes with a smile.

And now I read this recently-unzombified thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by suranyi View Post
How could one buy a 44 cent stamp at the Post Office without pennies?

And don't say "round up to 45 cents".
Our post office charges 2 baht per envelope but even though there are -baht coins in circulation they round up to the higher baht. No one complains, despite that -baht is worth more than a penny (in fact close to $.15 in earning power). At markets and informal stores almost everything is priced as a multiple of 5 baht (over $1 in equivalent "earning power"!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by wheresgeorge04 View Post
Where I work, our Marlboro cigarettes, all styles, used to come to, after tax, $5.26. If I gave everyone who bought a pack using $6.00 in cash $.75 change instead of $.74, my register would be short probably a quarter over one shift.... Over a month, $30 profit, down the shitter.
Maybe your manager will raise the price to $5.29 and screw the customers out of the penny instead. But probably he won't bother: $30 just isn't as much as you think it is, even if it's (hyperbolically) "down the shitter."

BTW, one complication U.S. has is that sales tax, at least in California, varies widely. (The Marlboro store across the street is in a different flood control district, with a different tax rate. ) I've never heard of such fine-tuning of tax rates in other countries ... probably because, again, people just aren't as obsessed with getting "screwed" out of an odd nickel because their neighbors needed flood control.

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Originally Posted by Shakester View Post
Every few months Americans gather here to argue this same question, over and over again....
Every time, the dirty furriners are ignored and the Americans continue to argue the same stupid shit back and forth endlessly....
Yes. I was born in the U.S.A. so am bad-mouthing my own kin, but, frankly, it's often very hard to believe these are the same people who won the World Wars and landed on the Moon.
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  #2  
Old 05-06-2012, 08:01 AM
Cicero Cicero is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by septimus View Post

Yes. I was born in the U.S.A. so am bad-mouthing my own kin, but, frankly, it's often very hard to believe these are the same people who won the World Wars and landed on the Moon.
Won the World Wars? You may be closer to saying they were on the winning side.

However, back to the topic, there are skinflints everywhere. It's not a USA alone thing.
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  #3  
Old 05-06-2012, 08:07 AM
Alessan Alessan is online now
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I have a feeling that the phenomenon noted in the OP are top-down rather than bottom-up - from corporations trying to reduce their quarterly expenses.
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  #4  
Old 05-06-2012, 08:26 AM
Dave Hartwick Dave Hartwick is offline
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I think it works both ways. American Airlines is trying to capture the cheapskate market and so it tightens rules and charges for extras. I'm sure they didn't do this without having asked customers exactly what they'd do without. However, in my experience, no frills flying isn't particularly American. Qantas and Virgin Blue charge for entertainment on domestic flights, I believe.

The hanging onto the penny really is dumb. They're worth so little that shopkeepers leave a bowl of them next to the register, yet every time a the subject of discontinuing the penny arises, somebody will say that it would be an excuse for prices to go up. No excuse is required. So the government continues to produce a coin that costs more than it's worth.

Another example of suspect thrift is allowing Walmart to dictate to producers. I recently read that Rubbermaid moved some of its manufacturing overseas-- costing decent American jobs-- because Walmart demanded lower prices. Sure, low prices help consumers, but they're cold comfort to somebody who got laid off or had to accept a pay cut.
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  #5  
Old 05-06-2012, 10:20 AM
Kobal2 Kobal2 is offline
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I don't think it is.
French here. I don't care for chump change in my pockets since it all goes into a big jar at the end of the day, and you can't buy anything with 600 1-cent coins without feeling like a massive tool & slowing down the whole line while the cashier painstakingly recounts that shit ; so I often tell people to keep the change when it's under 20 Euro-cents.

The amount of "Wh...what ? Are you insane ? That's MONEY! You're throwing away MONEY!" looks I get, from both cashiers and the customers behind me, never ceases to surprise me.
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  #6  
Old 05-06-2012, 10:44 AM
Ferret Herder Ferret Herder is offline
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Ryanair was installing pay toilets on its planes. I don't think anything that the US-based airline carriers have done measures up to that.

Last edited by Ferret Herder; 05-06-2012 at 10:44 AM..
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  #7  
Old 05-06-2012, 10:58 AM
Odesio Odesio is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by septimus View Post
Now prices are driven down by shoppers trying to save a dollar, so the airlines have to make up for it by charging for movies and soft drinks.
When I flew on Pan Am from New York to Frankfort in the 1980s my parents had to pay extra so that I could hear the movie being shown.

Quote:
Filling your gas tank used to be pleasant. An attendant would wash your windows and check your oil. It would cost a bit more but ... hey! There's an unemployment problem today anyway.
I went to New Jersey for the first time last year and it was just bizarre that it was illegal for me to fill my own gas tank. I'm so used to pumping my own gas that I'm more comfortable doing it myself rather than having someone else do it for me.

Quote:
I've never heard of such fine-tuning of tax rates in other countries ... probably because, again, people just aren't as obsessed with getting "screwed" out of an odd nickel because their neighbors needed flood control.
In some states it's the schools which are paid for out of sales taxes. At any rate, maybe the United States just has a bit more autonomy when it comes to local jurisdictions than most other countries. I know my British friends have been amazed at the sheer number of elected officials we have in the United States.
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  #8  
Old 05-06-2012, 12:15 PM
emcee2k emcee2k is online now
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Why would you assume this was an American thing?
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  #9  
Old 05-06-2012, 12:25 PM
Jackknifed Juggernaut Jackknifed Juggernaut is offline
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Have you seen how much Europeans and Asians tip?
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  #10  
Old 05-06-2012, 01:42 PM
Nava Nava is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackknifed Juggernaut View Post
Have you seen how much Europeans and Asians tip?
Have you compared the salary of European and Asian waiters with that of American ones?
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  #11  
Old 05-06-2012, 02:44 PM
enipla enipla is offline
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I much prefer to pump my own gas. It's much faster. I can do it. Let me.
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  #12  
Old 05-06-2012, 03:03 PM
Ferret Herder Ferret Herder is offline
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Oh, and I'm sure they're out there, but I can't think of any US airlines that charge for water, soda, juice, or coffee. Booze, yes. I haven't seen any PPV movies on one yet. Plus they used to rent headsets for $5, now American Airlines sells them for $2.

Last edited by Ferret Herder; 05-06-2012 at 03:05 PM..
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  #13  
Old 05-06-2012, 03:47 PM
Kimmy_Gibbler Kimmy_Gibbler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nava View Post
Have you compared the salary of European and Asian waiters with that of American ones?
Isn't that the OP's point, to the extent that there is one (and of this, I am not sure)....

Why do Europeans and Asians begrudge paying waiters a good wage and a generous tip?
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  #14  
Old 05-06-2012, 03:58 PM
Ludovic Ludovic is offline
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Asinine Parsimony

I saw them open for the Butthole Surfers.
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  #15  
Old 05-06-2012, 04:01 PM
furt furt is offline
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I'm American, but I've never once seen an airline charge for sodas.

I prefer pumping my own gas. Saving a buck on it is gravy.

I throw pennies away.



Clarify argument and provide better examples for second draft.
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  #16  
Old 05-06-2012, 04:04 PM
Blank Slate Blank Slate is offline
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Originally Posted by enipla View Post
I much prefer to pump my own gas. It's much faster. I can do it. Let me.
Buying gas in New Jersey sucks except for the fact that it's usually cheaper than the neighboring states. Typically, you have to wait for the attendant to come to your window, wait for them to start pumping, wait for them to take out the hose followed by more waiting while they take, process and return your card. It's ridiculously inefficient. I always carry cash for gas stops there so I can just fork it over at the beginning and hope I don't need change.

Last edited by Blank Slate; 05-06-2012 at 04:06 PM..
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  #17  
Old 05-06-2012, 04:17 PM
Batfish Batfish is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ludovic View Post
I saw them open for the Butthole Surfers.
I've always wondered, are the Butthole Surfers surfers who happen to be buttholes? Or persons who "surf" buttholes?
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  #18  
Old 05-06-2012, 04:28 PM
Ludovic Ludovic is offline
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[serious answer]Persons who surf buttholes, i.e. engage in anal sex. Back in the heyday of punk rebellion and when homophobia was still acceptable, some bands named themselves after homosexuals* in order to piss everyone off -- the "squares" who were offended that they were named after homosexuals (or didn't get the joke and thought they were made up of gays), and the politically correct who were offended by the use of anti-homosexual pejoratives.

*yes I know, not that many gays engage in teh anal.

Last edited by Ludovic; 05-06-2012 at 04:28 PM..
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  #19  
Old 05-06-2012, 04:28 PM
74westy 74westy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kimmy_Gibbler View Post
Why do Europeans and Asians begrudge paying waiters a good wage and a generous tip?
Why do Americans begrudge paying waiters a generous tip and a good wage.
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  #20  
Old 05-06-2012, 04:58 PM
Ravenman Ravenman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ludovic View Post
[serious answer]Persons who surf buttholes, i.e. engage in anal sex. Back in the heyday of punk rebellion and when homophobia was still acceptable, some bands named themselves after homosexuals* in order to piss everyone off -- the "squares" who were offended that they were named after homosexuals (or didn't get the joke and thought they were made up of gays), and the politically correct who were offended by the use of anti-homosexual pejoratives.

*yes I know, not that many gays engage in teh anal.
I've always heard that they performed under a bunch of ad hoc names, but had a song named Butthole Surfer. At one gig the MC forgot their name and just called them the name of the song that he knew, and the name finally stuck. But the song does seem to rely on, uh, sexual themes. But it seem the band name is as much chance as design.
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  #21  
Old 05-06-2012, 05:18 PM
tellyworth tellyworth is offline
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Australians are somewhat notorious for complaining about how expensive everything is. But one thing you don't hear is, complaining about losing money due to rounding off. All prices are rounded to the nearest 5c, have been for 20 years, and I don't think I've heard a complaint about it since about 3 weeks after it started.
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  #22  
Old 05-06-2012, 05:32 PM
salinqmind salinqmind is offline
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I only wish they had more gas stations here that have guys come out and fill up your car. What an ordeal in the winter! Park at a pump. Make your way inside, stand in line, fork over cash (trying to remember the number of the pump), make your way back out. Unscrew gas cap, insert pump, squeeze handle (which keeps sputtering off and on! off and on! ten cents worth of gas - stop! Squeeze! ten cents more of gas - stop! Squeeze! Repeat.) All this in howling freezing wind and snow, hands dead numb. Drive off. Turn around and go back for gas cap. Blah! I want a uniformed attendant waiting on me, I would pay an extra buck in the winter!
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  #23  
Old 05-06-2012, 06:12 PM
Uzi Uzi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by salinqmind View Post
Park at a pump. Make your way inside, stand in line, fork over cash (trying to remember the number of the pump), make your way back out.
It's called 'Pay at the Pump'. You swipe your credit or debit card at the pump then start pumping. Where do you live, Bedrock?
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  #24  
Old 05-06-2012, 06:20 PM
lisiate lisiate is offline
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Originally Posted by Kobal2 View Post
I don't think it is.
French here. I don't care for chump change in my pockets since it all goes into a big jar at the end of the day, and you can't buy anything with 600 1-cent coins without feeling like a massive tool & slowing down the whole line while the cashier painstakingly recounts that shit ; so I often tell people to keep the change when it's under 20 Euro-cents.

The amount of "Wh...what ? Are you insane ? That's MONEY! You're throwing away MONEY!" looks I get, from both cashiers and the customers behind me, never ceases to surprise me.
In defence of the cashiers there might be another reason for their reaction. If their till's out at the end of the shift they'll have some explaining to do to the manager. And god help them if they're seen taking money out of the till and pocketing it. (How else would they keep the change?).
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  #25  
Old 05-06-2012, 06:56 PM
Kimmy_Gibbler Kimmy_Gibbler is offline
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Originally Posted by 74westy View Post
Why do Americans begrudge paying waiters a generous tip and a good wage.
I asked first.
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  #26  
Old 05-06-2012, 07:29 PM
Kobal2 Kobal2 is offline
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Originally Posted by lisiate View Post
In defence of the cashiers there might be another reason for their reaction. If their till's out at the end of the shift they'll have some explaining to do to the manager. And god help them if they're seen taking money out of the till and pocketing it. (How else would they keep the change?).
I hadn't thought of it that way - do they get in trouble even if the total at the end of the day is above what it should be ?
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  #27  
Old 05-06-2012, 07:46 PM
tellyworth tellyworth is offline
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Originally Posted by Kobal2 View Post
I hadn't thought of it that way - do they get in trouble even if the total at the end of the day is above what it should be ?
Yes. Short-changing customers is bad for business.
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  #28  
Old 05-06-2012, 07:48 PM
SnakesCatLady SnakesCatLady is offline
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Originally Posted by Kobal2 View Post
I hadn't thought of it that way - do they get in trouble even if the total at the end of the day is above what it should be ?
Depending on the place, but yes, some do. The management believes you haven't been giving customers correct change if your register is over, which can result in complaints.

I worked fast food two summers during high school in the late '70's. The first summer I was allowed to count out change. The second summer we were required to enter the amount tendered into the register and let it calculate the change due. Too many people couldn't count out change correctly.
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  #29  
Old 05-06-2012, 09:27 PM
Folly Folly is offline
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Originally Posted by Ferret Herder View Post
Oh, and I'm sure they're out there, but I can't think of any US airlines that charge for water, soda, juice, or coffee.
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Originally Posted by furt View Post
I'm American, but I've never once seen an airline charge for sodas.
Spirit Airlines. blech...
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  #30  
Old 05-06-2012, 09:39 PM
Lord Mondegreen Lord Mondegreen is online now
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Originally Posted by Dave Hartwick View Post
Qantas and Virgin Blue charge for entertainment on domestic flights, I believe.
I agree with most of your post, however I'll nitpick here. Qantas don't charge for entertainment - they hand out headsets for free. They also serve a snack and tea/coffee on the Canberra to Sydney route even though the aircraft is only in the air for about 20 minutes. After 4 pm on a weekday the booze is also free. Oh, and no charge for checked luggage.
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  #31  
Old 05-06-2012, 09:48 PM
D_Odds D_Odds is offline
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Spirit Airlines. blech...
Spirit isn't an airline; it's a bus company with delusions of grandeur.
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  #32  
Old 05-07-2012, 02:15 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
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I think there can be a fine line between parsimony and efficiency. Does it really make sense to pay someone to stand around at a gas station all the time, push some buttons, and move a pump handle around? The action is simple and easily learned, and the driver has to sit there until the tank is full anyway. Yes, there is an unemployment problem, but paying people to do make-work probably isn't a good solution.

Does it really make sense to carry a bunch of food up in an airplane and charge everyone for it, even though the food is of relatively low quality and most people wouldn't choose to pay an extra $10 for each ticket to get a meal "for free"? It seems to me that charging for additional service really does make us all better off. I can fly a bit cheaper, and the people who really do want to pay a premium for a re-warmed omelette still have that chance.

Even the thing about pay toilets on airplanes doesn't seem completely beyond the pale to me. Pay public toilets are much more common on Europe than in the US, and, though it took me a little while to get used to it, I think it's a much better system. Paying means that there's money for someone to keep the facilities clean, stocked, and safe from vandalism, and the profit motive ensures that it's never hard to find a toilet. I'd much rather pay a little bit for a nice and easy to find toilet than deal with some of the public toilets I've encountered in the states. Incentives matter.

I think the issue about rounding prices and getting rid of the penny is a different topic entirely. The people opposed to rounding prices seem to be incapable of critical thinking (realizing that rounding goes both ways) and pretty ignorant of economics as well.
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  #33  
Old 05-07-2012, 03:18 PM
cmkeller cmkeller is offline
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Blank Slate:

Quote:
Buying gas in New Jersey sucks except for the fact that it's usually cheaper than the neighboring states.
ALWAYS cheaper.
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  #34  
Old 05-07-2012, 05:26 PM
Uzi Uzi is offline
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Originally Posted by cmkeller View Post
ALWAYS cheaper.
Does New Jersey charge less of a gas tax to allow for stations to be competitive while employing extra people?
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  #35  
Old 05-07-2012, 05:51 PM
cmkeller cmkeller is offline
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I think they just chose to make their money from drivers by tolling the heck out of their roads rather than through gas taxes.
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  #36  
Old 05-07-2012, 07:33 PM
Martini Enfield Martini Enfield is offline
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I've sometimes wondered the same thing as the OP, particularly in relation to the "Sales tax not included in the price" thing common to many parts of the US I've visited.

I know I (and others) have asked about it on the boards before and usually get responses about local taxes (bullshit, computers are more than capable of calculating the price at store level) followed by "So you can see how much tax the Government is getting!"

To which I say "You get the same thing in a "total price" situation with the "This sale includes tax of $X" at the bottom of the receipt."

It's certainly been my international experience that most people I've talked to outside the US are only interested in knowing the total amount of money they have to pay for an item at point of sale, they particularly don't care how what amount of that is going to the Government (with exceptions, of course - but not for most every day stuff.) The point is, I think people would prefer not to have to do slightly complicated maths* without a calculator just to work out what 7.15% on $16.08 is (for example).

As someone else mentioned, they got rid of 1 & 2c pieces in Australia and NZ years ago and people got over it very quickly. A few years ago NZ even ditched their 5c pieces and there was marginally more brouhaha over that, but as my friends and family in NZ pointed out, "It's not like 5c buys anything anyway."

And with rounding it evens out pretty quickly as well, and regardless, it's still only a few cents which really aren't worth getting worked up over IMHO.

*For the average person, I know you're all mathematical geniuses here.
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Note: Please consider yourself and/or your acquaintances excluded from any of the author's sweeping generalisations which you happen to disagree with or have different experiences of.

Last edited by Martini Enfield; 05-07-2012 at 07:36 PM..
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  #37  
Old 05-07-2012, 09:19 PM
D_Odds D_Odds is offline
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Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
I've sometimes wondered the same thing as the OP, particularly in relation to the "Sales tax not included in the price" thing common to many parts of the US I've visited.
People are not receptive to change. U.S. citizens have grown up knowing that the price does not include sales tax, and despite there being a better way to do things, will fight the change. But resistance to change is not exclusive to U.S. citizens. Outsiders look at our oddities like not getting rid of pennies or not adding sales tax to the price of items before checkout, and shake their heads, but every place has quirks and idiosyncrasies that the locals will be loath to change.

The real problem arises in not respecting that different people do things different ways. Sure, when visiting a foreign land, you can learn some of the major customs (like tipping in the US versus Australia), but there is no way one can learn all the little differences (like here in NY we drink 'soda', but other places drink 'pop', 'sodapop', or my Georgia favorite, 'coke' (used to mean any soda)). Just accept that we're not homogeneous instead of thinking 'you're doing it wrong'.
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  #38  
Old 05-07-2012, 09:43 PM
Lord Feldon Lord Feldon is online now
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Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
The point is, I think people would prefer not to have to do slightly complicated maths* without a calculator just to work out what 7.15% on $16.08 is (for example).
Is this really how you think people shop in the US? I'm pretty sure most people just add "a bit more" in their heads (if they think about it at all) and pay whatever number shows up at the cash register.

Last edited by Lord Feldon; 05-07-2012 at 09:43 PM..
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  #39  
Old 05-07-2012, 09:47 PM
Ferret Herder Ferret Herder is offline
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Is this really how you think people shop in the US? I'm pretty sure most people just add "a bit more" in their heads (if they think about it at all) and pay whatever number shows up at the cash register.
Yup. I don't even remember how much the state, county, and city sales taxes in my area run. Yes, I pay a different sales tax in my little suburb of Chicago than I would just a few miles away if I cross a city boundary. I know I'll pay more if I cross the county line, but don't know what any given city's sales tax is.
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Old 05-07-2012, 09:49 PM
kidchameleon kidchameleon is offline
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Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
I've sometimes wondered the same thing as the OP, particularly in relation to the "Sales tax not included in the price" thing common to many parts of the US I've visited.
Well, those organizations that don't pay sales tax would probably like to know how much they will have to pay, too. Either way someone is inconvenienced.
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  #41  
Old 05-07-2012, 09:52 PM
Kobal2 Kobal2 is offline
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Originally Posted by iamthewalrus(:3= View Post
The people opposed to rounding prices seem to be incapable of critical thinking (realizing that rounding goes both ways) and pretty ignorant of economics as well.
Fair's fair though - you know the rounding would only ever go up.
Not that it would make much of a difference even if sales departments were actually honest about rounding to the nearest even dollar value since every last price ends in .99 or .49 these days
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  #42  
Old 05-08-2012, 07:42 AM
Jackmannii Jackmannii is offline
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So, do travelers on non-U.S. airlines get free multi-course gourmet meals served on linen tablecloths, with wine and strolling violinists, readings by prominent authors and jugglers and mimes to amuse the kiddies - and it's only Americans' asinine parsimony that prevents us from having this wondrous flying experience?

Hell, I'd pay more for a flight like that (except stuff the mimes, and don't make me dress up in a suit and tie).
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  #43  
Old 05-08-2012, 11:46 AM
Anne Neville Anne Neville is offline
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Originally Posted by Martini Enfield View Post
I've sometimes wondered the same thing as the OP, particularly in relation to the "Sales tax not included in the price" thing common to many parts of the US I've visited.

I know I (and others) have asked about it on the boards before and usually get responses about local taxes (bullshit, computers are more than capable of calculating the price at store level) followed by "So you can see how much tax the Government is getting!"

To which I say "You get the same thing in a "total price" situation with the "This sale includes tax of $X" at the bottom of the receipt."
We tolerate it, and not including the sales tax in the price of items makes things easier for national chains like Wal-Mart, which are selling stuff in lots of different areas with different sales taxes. Each of the 50 states has its own policy on sales taxes, and some cities and counties have additional sales taxes. They can make one TV ad advertising the price of something, instead of having to make a different one for each sales tax zone. I think that's the real reason sales taxes are not included in prices in the US- large companies with a lot of money want it that way.

ETA: To answer the OP, the saying is "penny wise, pound foolish", not "penny wise, dollar foolish". So I suspect this kind of petty parsimony is not unique to the US.

Last edited by Anne Neville; 05-08-2012 at 11:48 AM..
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  #44  
Old 05-08-2012, 12:48 PM
iamthewalrus(:3= iamthewalrus(:3= is offline
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Originally Posted by Kobal2 View Post
Fair's fair though - you know the rounding would only ever go up.
No, you don't know that. I'm not even sure why you think that. Other countries that have eliminated pennies have instituted fair rounding that goes down as often as up.

If a store wants to increase their prices, they can just do that. They don't need to hide it under the guise of a price-rounding scheme.
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Old 05-08-2012, 01:23 PM
Blaster Master Blaster Master is offline
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I actually like the way we do things. Sure, it's nice to get "free" things from a business, but the bottom line is that it's not free, you're paying for it, you're just not being given an itemized bill.

Using the airline flight as an example, if I'm offered a free glass of wine or whatever, sure, I'll take it. But really the way that works is you're charged the cost of the flight plus the amortized cost of the "free" drinks. For some people, they'd rather not pay that and just not get the free drink. So, instead, they charge the bare minimum of the service and have service fees on top of that. If I'm not really that interested in drinking on the flight, why should I have to pay more so others can?

Sure, it can be a big pain in the ass to get nickled and dimed, and probably most times I'd rather just pay a little more than I need to to avoid that hassle, but in the end it does give the consumer more control over their spending. So I do think that some businesses take it too far, and airline travel is probably one of the worst offenders charging for headphones and drinks and checked baggage and all that sort of stuff, some of which works out to next to nothing and most people would want.
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Old 05-08-2012, 05:12 PM
Dave Hartwick Dave Hartwick is offline
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Originally Posted by Lord Mondegreen View Post
I agree with most of your post, however I'll nitpick here. Qantas don't charge for entertainment - they hand out headsets for free. They also serve a snack and tea/coffee on the Canberra to Sydney route even though the aircraft is only in the air for about 20 minutes. After 4 pm on a weekday the booze is also free. Oh, and no charge for checked luggage.
Yeah, my memory was sketchy. Thanks for the correction. Virgin does charge for entertainment? I'm almost certain I was on a domestic flight once where you had to pay if you wanted to watch anything other than commercials.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:25 PM
Kobal2 Kobal2 is offline
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Originally Posted by iamthewalrus(:3= View Post
No, you don't know that. I'm not even sure why you think that. Other countries that have eliminated pennies have instituted fair rounding that goes down as often as up.

If a store wants to increase their prices, they can just do that. They don't need to hide it under the guise of a price-rounding scheme.
No, but it's a convenient excuse, and the shopkeeper can blame the price hike on the big bad gummint over their own greed or malice.

And I know the rounding only goes up because I was there back when the Franc became the Euro, and moreover I was still at a point in life where one Franc represented 10% of my weekly revenue (my folks were real tight with the allowance, man ) so I paid more attention to that sort of things than I might had I not cared for every penny.

Soda cans in vending machines had been 5f since time immemorial. It's a nice round number, and it's one of those big large coins you tended to keep around in your pockets. When we switched, soda cans started costing 1 euro. Nice, round number, and it's one of those heavy coins you tend to keep around in your pockets. Of course, 1 euro was really 7 francs and a bit...
It was like that across the board. Beer in pubs, groceries, fast food... everything was priced to the nearest euro or half-euro up. Never down.
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:30 PM
Cicero Cicero is offline
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Originally Posted by Kobal2 View Post
And I know the rounding only goes up because I was there back when the Franc became the Euro, and moreover I was still at a point in life where one Franc represented 10% of my weekly revenue (my folks were real tight with the allowance, man ) so I paid more attention to that sort of things than I might had I not cared for every penny.

Never down.
That is absolute bullshit. Earlier this week I bought petrol (gas). I filled the tank and it came to $40.02. Guess what- it was rounded down.

Of course prices can be rounded down. When a price is set per litre, kg or whatever and a customer buys a quantity which has a quantity of cents which are within the range to be rounded down they will be (paying cash of course).
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Old 05-08-2012, 09:09 PM
Kobal2 Kobal2 is offline
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Originally Posted by Cicero View Post
That is absolute bullshit. Earlier this week I bought petrol (gas). I filled the tank and it came to $40.02. Guess what- it was rounded down.

Of course prices can be rounded down. When a price is set per litre, kg or whatever and a customer buys a quantity which has a quantity of cents which are within the range to be rounded down they will be (paying cash of course).
True enough, but that's not what I'm talking about either. Check the price per kilo. That will never be rounded down when the money itself changes. Whether the cashier/manager opts to let you off on a handful of pennies here and there, particularly on large purchases, is another thing altogether.
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Old 05-09-2012, 12:05 AM
Blank Slate Blank Slate is offline
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Originally Posted by Uzi View Post
Does New Jersey charge less of a gas tax to allow for stations to be competitive while employing extra people?
I don't know if that's the reasoning, but gas is cheaper in N.J. because of a low state tax combined with having four in-state refineries.
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