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The Trend that is ‘Cafe Lounging’

News July 24th 2014

‘Café Lounging’, “what’s that?” I hear you ask.

‘Café Lounging’ or ‘Wi-Fi scrounging’ are people who order one bevereage from a cafe and then spend a few hours using their free Wi-Fi provided. There is a fine line between taking advantage of the free service and just taking advantage.

It is rapidly becoming common knowledge that ‘Café Loungers’ are abusing a free privilege given to them by the establishments which they are using. What I’m aiming to gain from this blog today is an understanding of where the line is.

‘WI-FI AVAILABLE HERE’ signs are now scattered all around the nation in most cafés. It entises people by using the power of the internet, something which people nowadays cannot go anywhere without. People will use the Wi-Fi to keep up with work, keep up with current affairs or most likely for social media. The great thing about having Wi-Fi is you don’t feel like you’re going to miss something whilst enjoying your favourite cup of coffee.

However, when does it get to the point where a customer is border line ‘squatting’? When does it become ok for the cafe owner to ask the customer to leave if they aren't eating or drinking? After all the cafe has offered this free Wi-Fi service? I appreciate that not all people can access the internet, but to buy a cheap drink doesn’t then allow you to unlimited time on the company’s Wi-Fi. It’s a business after all, owners have to make money. Personally I feel you should only stay in the cafe for an hour max after finishing your drink (the unwritten law for most or perhaps just good manners?).

This may all seem to be a bit far-fetched, but currently in New York there is an ongoing clash between McDonald’s restaurant workers and Korean senior citizens, who apparently spend all day eating one portion of chips between them.

Libraries are seriously under used these days, they all offer free internet access, further to that it’s quiet and provides you with the silent environment needed to get on with whatever it is that needs doing. I wonder how many people would switch to libraries if they started doing lattes and cappuccinos.

My conclusion is simple; I think the unwritten law is reasonable to both arguments. If you wish to sit at a café table for 6 hours on some work that needs doing then you’ll need to buy six items within that time frame. Seems fair to me

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