Japan’s consumption tax has raised to 10% since October, and the reduced tax rate (8%) is applied to essentials. For food, you’ll pay 8% if you take out or order in, and you’ll pay 10% if you eat in the store.
And this complicates the things.
One day at a bakery. I bought a bunch of breads and a cup of tea, planning to take a little break in the store.
A cashier lady asked me if I was going to eat all of them in the store, I said no, then she asked me which one to eat now and which one to take home. She needed to know specifically to type in the machine.
I said “I’m going to have a cup of tea and this sandwich in the store… and I’ll take others home.” And by saying this, I felt that my action was limited. If I had a bite of other things than this sandwich, it would be deemed as a tax evasion…
And the other day at a different bakery.
This time I went in just to have a coffee and a donut in the store, so I could simply declare “I’ll eat here”.
Then a cheerful cashier lady gave me a small cup, addition to my ordered coffee. She said “we are giving this cup to customers who honestly told and paid 10% tax. Good things happen to honest people. You can have coffee or miso soup or corn soup from that machine for free.”
Though I was quite puzzled by their choices, I happily received this offer and reached the multiple beverage machine (it’s all in one machine). I thought it’s a brilliant idea.
Holding this honest people’s cup, I remembered the Aesop’s Fables of “What you had lost in the river was golden ax or silver ax..?”
“Are you going to eat here or take out?”
Your honesty will be tested at the checkout.