TGI Fridays / general manager forced me to leave instead of resolving complaint
Here is the letter that I sent to their corporate office:
To Whom It May Concern:
I am writing about a terrible experience I had at the TGI Fridays located inside Honey Creek Mall in Terre Haute, IN on July 3, 2010, around 7:00 PM. A manager identifying himself as Todd Sackett, the general manager, forced me to leave the restaurant instead of resolving my complaint.
Five friends and I visited your restaurant to celebrate a birthday. After we were seated in the wrong area and moved to the location that was actually set up for us, we ordered some alcoholic beverages and placed our meal orders.
I had ordered the parmesan crusted chicken, but the server brought out a chicken and shrimp dish. I told the server that my order was incorrect and indicated that the chicken and shrimp would be acceptable; however, the server returned the incorrect meal to the kitchen. I assumed that she had just grabbed the wrong order and would be right back. I was wrong.
When the server had returned to check on us, I told her to cancel my order because my friends were now finished eating. She offered to provide the meal at no charge; however, I would not have had time to eat or store the food, so I declined.
When I received my bill, I asked to speak to the manager to see if he would refund my drink purchases to make up for the poor service. Mr. Sackett arrived and explained that they had already offered to provide my meal for free and that he had to throw away my food because I had refused to accept his offer. I explained that I would not have been able to eat the meal as my friends had already finished eating and we needed to leave.
Mr. Sackett told me that he could not buy my drinks and did not offer any other specific remedies to my complaint. I informed him that I would be contacting his supervisor. He provided me with his business card with a hand-written name and phone number on the back (enclosed) and then left.
As we were paying our bills, we noticed that we had been overcharged for some of our drinks. Although the description of the drink on the receipt had the correct price in it, the actual extended price for the drink was too expensive. The server apologized and corrected the error. I have enclosed the corrected receipt showing that an allowance was added at the bottom to correct the price; however, the original misleading line item is still visible at the top.
I then asked to speak to Mr. Sackett again. I had to wait a long time before I could speak to him. When he was finally available, I informed him that in addition to being forced to sit and watch my friends eat their dinner, we had been overcharged for our drinks.
He replied that we had not been overcharged. I responded that had we not caught the error, which could have been easily overlooked, we would have paid too much money for our drinks. I reminded him that I would be contacting his supervisor about my experience.
In response, Mr. Sackett sighed deeply and told me that he did not care WHAT [sic] I told his supervisor. He reiterated that he had already thrown away my food and told me to contact my state representative.
I replied that he could offer me a discount or a gift card/voucher against a future purchase instead of buying my drinks. In front of my friends and the other patrons that were probably watching, he grimaced deeply and told me that he had had enough, that I had to leave, and gestured towards the exit, as if I had done something wrong. I was humiliated.
While I was understandably upset with the service I had received and the handling of the situation by Mr. Sackett, I did not use inappropriate language or speak disrespectfully to Mr. Sackett or any of the staff.
Though my friends and I will certainly never visit your restaurant again, it is my hope that you will forward this letter to the appropriate executive(s) and the franchise owner so that future customers do not have to go through what I did. As a matter of public interest, I have posted this letter online so that others will know what to expect should they visit your Terre Haute TGI Fridays restaurant.
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