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Me vs Costa...

(209 Posts)
ImAMarshmellow Thu 07-Dec-17 13:18:53

Went to a shopping centre this morning with ds. Wanted to stop for a coffee mid morning so went into one of the 2 costas in the retail park.
Ds is intolerant to soya, dairy and eggs, which means he essentially can't have anything that Costa sell. (Bread contains soya, crumpets have eggs in and cakes are self explanatory. They also prepare stuff in the same area, so cross contamination is highly possible) I don't want him eating a bag of salt and vinegar crisps, so I normally take a bag of Ella's puffs snacks or similar. (He's 15 months).
Bought myself a coffee and cake and sat down with ds and his snack. He's happily chomping through his snack and an employee brought my drink over and asked if I had bought the snack ds was eating from there... I explained not and that he can't eat anything from there because as far as I am aware most of the foods are unsuitable for his dietary needs. She basically asked me to either leave or put the snacks away.
So was I wrong for bringing my own snacks or was I being reasonable since he really can't eat anything from there?
The only other 2 places to eat within that retail park would have been the same I.e they sell cakes/snack style foods.

LiquoricePickle Thu 07-Dec-17 13:20:31

YANBU. For obvious reasons.

curryforbreakfast Thu 07-Dec-17 13:21:04

She was doing her job as she was told to do it. But Costa HQ don't care if your baby eats his snacks.

So just deal with it the British way, she tells you that you can't do it, you say ok and do it anyway. Everyone has done their role, all good.

toffee1000 Thu 07-Dec-17 13:21:28

I think a lot of places are like that (ie can’t eat anything not brought from them on the premises).

MyToeHurtsBetty Thu 07-Dec-17 13:22:23

YANBU as you had bought and paid for a coffee and cake and were eating that.....

witchofzog Thu 07-Dec-17 13:23:10

Great customer service. Most 15 month olds need a distraction. You had bought food and a drink and he is allergic so a bit of common sense would have been better in this situation. Tabby

witchofzog Thu 07-Dec-17 13:23:41

Tabby?? Yanbu blush

Pickleypickles Thu 07-Dec-17 13:24:27

I think because you had bought coffee and cake and son is so young and intolerant to everything YWNBU. It sounds like you just got a jobsworth, a no outside food rule makes sense, but i think common sense should be applied to every rule.
I would email costa and explain what happened and that you arent very happy.

Out of interest...what did you do?

00100001 Thu 07-Dec-17 13:24:41

Just smile, say you didn't realise, and ignore her.

Jayfee Thu 07-Dec-17 13:25:59

Just phone the manager and explain, not in an angry way, and if he is placatory be happy that you have improved tolerance for other mums. If he is not placatory, big complaint to head office imo

WutheringTights Thu 07-Dec-17 13:26:27

Most places don't mind you feeding a baby something you've brought with you if you buy food from them for you to eat. I've never had a problem and I have three children and often frequent a variety of cafes, coffee shops etc. In my mind around eighteen months is the cut off age for this but given your situation I think a little leeway is required. Ignore them.

Jerseysilkvelour Thu 07-Dec-17 13:26:39

Your DS is 15 months and they objected to you having brought your own food? I think that's unreasonable, I know they have their rules about only food bought there etc but who the hell makes people buy cake to feed their babies? Everyone brings snacks at that age!

Tell Costa HQ, you'll probably get a voucher out of it.

BluthsFrozenBananas Thu 07-Dec-17 13:28:34

I think Costa should have shown some discretion here once you explained your sons allergies, but I assume they have a blanket policy in place on outside snacks. They’ve probably had the situation in the past of groups of mums with toddlers turning up, buying a couple of coffees then laying out a spread of brought in snacks on the table.

ImAMarshmellow Thu 07-Dec-17 13:30:43

I can understand a small cafe being annoyed (small profits etc), but I'm sure we're not going to bring down Costa with a tiny little bag of snacks. I would buy something from them... if I bloody could angry.
I wasn't sure if I'd turned into 'that parent' blush

PeppaPigTastesLikeBacon Thu 07-Dec-17 13:31:57

I didn’t realise you couldn’t. If I’m going to Nero (or Costa) I always bring a snack and some water for my DD. I buy coffee and sometimes a cake for me so I am a customer.

PinkHeart5914 Thu 07-Dec-17 13:33:33

Yanbu, your child has allergies and as they don’t sell anything he can have what do they expect? And youhad brought coffee and cake for yourself so they got your money. If you were just too tight to buy him something I could understand their point but that’s not what happened here

curryforbreakfast Thu 07-Dec-17 13:34:50

I think Costa should have shown some discretion here

It was one waitress, not the corporate entity that is Costa.

RhiannonOHara Thu 07-Dec-17 13:38:42

I'd write to head office. I wouldn't identify the staff member, but just say you don't feel inclined to go to Costa again if they put their staff under such pressure to be jobsworths.

Migraleve Thu 07-Dec-17 13:41:28

I think you came up against a major jobsworth here.

Shutupanddance1 Thu 07-Dec-17 13:41:41

I always take snacks for my 17 month old confused - usually because it takes servers ages to come with food when sitting in a cafe etc but then I share whatever I’ve bought with my DD.

Why would I waste money on food for a 17 month old when the majority of it wouldn’t be eaten?

MiaowTheCat Thu 07-Dec-17 13:45:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RatRolyPoly Thu 07-Dec-17 13:45:59

OP, our ds's have matching allergies! Mine is now 2.5 and will still always have a tangerine or whatever if I'm having something to eat in a cafe; you just try eating a snack in front of a 2 year old and not letting them have one! In more homey establishments I'm always sure to ask first but I wouldn't think twice somewhere like Costa.

Prusik Thu 07-Dec-17 13:47:06

I feel like I'll be in the same position very soon. DS is milk free, soya free and gluten free. He's 11 months now, I always bring snacks. normally just blueberries or something. He wouldn't be able to eat a whole piece of cake anyway!

Flokidoki Thu 07-Dec-17 13:47:19

I think this was a case of that one employee. In a former life I was a manager at a Costa, we had lots of regulars that did this and I never made it an issue, and nor had the staff that came before me.

Neolara Thu 07-Dec-17 13:47:29

I agree that it was a reasonable thing for you to do. However, when I had tiny kids, one of the mums I knew would regularly go to cafes and bring out huge amounts of food she'd brought from home and tell the cafe it was because of allergies. It wasn't. (I knew her and her kids well). She just didn't want to buy anything for the kids from the cafe. Her kids would quite happily have eaten the kind of food they had on offer. She was just a cafe CF. I suspect cafes have a lot of parents turn, refuse to buy food for the kids saying they have allergies. As a parents of a child who has anaphylatic allergies, I found it irritating as you could see some cafe owners kind of rolling their eyes. Means they are less likely to believe people who have kids with genuine issues.

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