Pret A Manger customers and staff complain about ‘rip off’ subscription service

Coffee chain Pret A Manger has reportedly received thousands of complaints about its drinks subscription service as people are frustrated that not all of the beverages are available.

Those who take out the subscription pay £20 a month and get unlimited hot and cold beverages from Pret stores.

But, the BBC reports that 5,000 complaints have been sent into the coffee shop chain about the offer as some drinks – like smoothies – weren’t always available.

Former staff have said that the introduction of the subscription had caused an increased workload which was overwhelming workers.

The subscription launched in 2020 after coffee sales plummeted due to the pandemic and the company said it was “really pleased” with the response to it.

And, the chain states "If our Baristas brew it, blend it or steam it, you can have it!"

But, some customers have said that this isn’t the case.

Rachel, from Watford, said: "As I was now travelling into London again I thought I'd treat myself to drinks I wouldn't usually try.

“But most of the time I'm told that I can't have a cold drink because they're unavailable."

Another, Brendan, stated that he limits himself to two drinks a day, but can usually not get his favourite mango and pineapple drink.

He told the BBC: "It's become a long standing joke with the staff now.

“I laughed it off for a while, but now I'm getting angry and I'm starting to feel I've been ripped off.”

And, some customers have even made complaints to the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

The regulator has approached the company and said that they should "consider reviewing the ads for their subscription service".

And, staff members have said that the “endless smoothie and frappes giveaway” was frustrating them – and one team member claimed that workers “boycott” the tricky to make drinks.

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They added that the drinks are complicated and making 50 in a day can be felt by the staff members.

While another added: “The whole demeanour changed when they brought in the subscription. The blending machines can't take it.

"I can understand why Pret think it makes commercial sense but the staff can't take much more."

A Pret spokesperson told the Daily Star: “We’re really pleased with the response to our Coffee Subscription since it launched last year.

“It’s been incredibly popular with Pret customers and significantly less than 1% of all coffee subscribers have raised any concerns about this issue.

“We continue to work with shop teams to ensure they have what they need to keep Team Members and customers happy, and we are incredibly grateful to all our colleagues for their hard work over the past year.”

Do you have the Pret subscription? Tell us your thoughts in the comments…

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