Couple who dined & dashed after S$245 coffee shop feast should be caned: Ho Ching

Hot take.

Julia Yee | September 04, 2023, 06:23 PM



A couple who left without paying for a S$245.60 zi char meal were criticised by Ho Ching on Facebook.

Ho is the former CEO of Temasek and now chairperson of Temasek Trust.

The scene of their crime was a coffee shop store located at 245 Outram Road, Lao You Ji Fishhead Steamboat and Seafood Restaurant.

Chen Wei, the 38-year-old waitress who had served the pair, told Shin Min Daily News that the couple had strolled in at 4:45am, when the restaurant was about to close.

On Google, the restaurant is said to be open daily from 5pm to 4:30am.

Staff worked overtime to deliver feast

The couple, who appeared to be in their 40s, ordered the menu's signature dishes, including a three-egg spinach dish, a stewed chicken, and a Hong Kong steamed turbot fish, which cost S$208 in total.

Photo via Shin Min Daily News

Factoring in the rice and two drinks, the couple racked up a final bill of S$245.60.

Chen, along with a chef and another staff member, worked overtime to serve them for nearly an hour.

Unable to stomach their spread in its entirety, the pair later asked for their leftovers to be packed.

Having mistaken that the customers had already paid their bill, Chen left the packed food on their table.

The couple then collected their leftovers and left in a yellow taxi sans payment.

Waitress left to foot the bill

This left Chen to cover the cost of their bill, according to Shin Min.

"My monthly salary is only S$1,800. The money is not a small amount for me. I hope they can come back and repay it as soon as possible," said Chen.

She said that even though she has come across previous customers who forgot to pay, they'd always call the restaurant to alert them and transfer the money via PayNow.

After waiting for about a week, however, this couple has yet to come forward and foot the bill.

Chen added that her boss is aware of the incident and would take action against the couple if they still fail to come forth.

Weighing in on the issue, Ho Ching had this to say of the culprits:

"There are cheats and there are cheats. The ones who cheat retirees, low wage workers, and the vulnerable, are the lowliest of the low life. We should try to find these folks, and cane them properly for preying on the weak and vulnerable."

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Top images via Shin Min Daily News