Sunday 2 August 2009

Customer Service in South Africa

Frankly, I have never known anything like it, not anywhere, not ever. Special mentions go to: Jackie at Xai-Xai in Johannesburg whose Flaming Senoritas we were powerless to refuse; Mike at Arnold’s in Cape Town who was happy to recommend us places to stay, give us directions and even call them on our behalf to check for availability. He would chat to us in quiet spells, rush off to do something important, and return to pick up the conversation from the exact point in the sentence he’d left it at. I’m afraid I can’t remember the name of the waitress who served us at Bukhara, one of Cape Town’s Indian restaurants, but she was just lovely (and once you've eaten ostrich tikka, all other meat falls into the shade). Sharon, our waitress at Mama Africa, was great fun and even let me fold napkins (the next morning, we found we had her mobile number somehow). And, of course, Rayno at Tsitsikamma, as Alex has already mentioned. A unique ‘completely f*** you up’ style of customer service, and it was funny watching him trying to operate the calculator to total up the bill the next morning. Mind you, I couldn’t even say calculator.

The funny thing is, some local South Africans we met told us they always complain about customer service. Which, I guess, just goes to show.

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