Belfast Titanic Quarter cafe trading on honesty

Strategy whereby patrons pay what they want proving a success

 

A cafe that lets its customers name their price is expanding after proving honesty actually does pay. The Dock in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter asks patrons to put whatever they feel is appropriate into an honesty box before leaving.

Originally opened on a pop-up basis, the premises has be trading for 15 months and has proved so successful it has added an extension.

Church of Ireland minister Rev Chris Bennett, who helps to run the cafe with counterparts from other faiths in Northern Ireland, described it as a “community living room”.

“Overseas visitors who may not know what a cup of coffee costs over here, we might give them a suggested price, but 99 times out of 100 we just leave it to people’s discretion whatever they think is a fair price,” he said.

The cafe is close to the Titanic Belfast visitor attraction. Staffed by volunteers, the charity cafe is also boosted by the fact it doesn’t have to pay rent. Building owners Titanic Quarter have offered the commercial unit free of charge until a new tenant emerges.

Titanic Quarter chief executive David Gavaghan said the cafe had become a “community hub” for an area with about 15,000 people living, working and studying.