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Cafe Fest Singapore responds to backlash, offers more services

SINGAPORE – Café Fest Singapore today (Sept 7) stepped up services such as express queues and one-for-one deals to customers who had bought special passes to their event, following complaints that the passes were not worth the S$20 to S$30 price tag.

SINGAPORE – Café Fest Singapore today (Sept 7) stepped up services such as express queues and one-for-one deals to customers who had bought special passes to their event, following complaints that the passes were not worth the S$20 to S$30 price tag.

Organisers of the inaugural festival, which gathered 12 cafes in Singapore at Waterfront Promenade over this weekend, had previously stated that the event would be exclusive to pass-holders, who would also enjoy discount prices. The S$30 VIP pass would also grant access to an exclusive tent with live performance.

But pass-holders arrived at the event yesterday to find that the general public was also allowed to spend at the event, leading to long queues and items being rapidly sold out. The discount was also limited to just around S$1 per item.

Many unhappy pass-holders took to Facebook to express their disappointment, with some suspecting fraud and threatening to report the incident to the Consumers Association of Singapore. But organisers Ms Sarah Lek and Mr Gabriel Tan said it was simply an “oversight” and compensation is in the pipeline.

“It came down to our mistake for not communicating to the consumers clearly that the event was made open to the public” ­– a decision made “halfway” through the preparation of the event, Mr Tan told TODAY. “But we take the feedback very seriously and we will not shun responsibility. Pass-holders who wish to be compensated can email us by next Sunday while we work out the details. We are not ruling out refund as an option.”

Meanwhile, vendors also spiced up their offerings to pass-holders who visited the event today. Four out of the twelve participating cafes offered express VIP queue areas to these customers, while some also offered one-for-one deals and free coffee.

“Most of the vendors have also agreed to serve only pass-holders today,” Ms Lek added. “There was also complaint that we didn’t control the access to our VIP tent yesterday – today we’ve tightened our crowd control on that.”

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