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But other hawkers CNA spoke to said they do not charge more for extra bags, beyond the typical takeaway fee of up to 30 cents. 

A hawker selling salted duck at Bukit Canberra Hawker Centre said she doesn’t frequently get customers asking for bags, just “on and off”. A Western food stall employee at the same hawker centre said they also do not charge customers who occasionally ask for no more than one extra bag. 

But some hawkers have encountered customers taking multiple bags at a time – usually without asking.

A vegetarian cooked food stall at Chong Pang Market & Food Centre in Yishun once had to deal with an elderly customer grabbing several plastic bags hanging near the entrance of the store. 

An employee at the stall, who gave her name as Sally, said the customer took about six plastic bags after buying a packet of beehoon.

“I know what he (did) … But I don’t want to open my mouth and (tell) him because he’s old,” said Ms Sally, adding that she “let him take” the plastic bags the first time.

But the customer returned a second time and took several plastic bags again. By the third time, Ms Sally moved the plastic bags out of reach the moment she spotted the customer.

“I told the uncle … you’re (not here) to buy my bee hoon. You just want to come to take my free plastic bags,” Ms Sally said. 

Although the customer did return to the stall two more times, he eventually stopped coming. When CNA visited the store on Jul 25, the plastic bags had been placed back at their original location. 

While the stall also has other customers taking additional one to two plastic bags – sometimes without asking as well – it still does not charge more for the carriers. 

“(If) it’s one or two, I’ll give. But if you want (more), then you buy (the plastic bags) for me,” Ms Sally said with a laugh. 5, 10 cents for extra bags: Hawkers, minimarts start charging as more ask for free carriers

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