Hygiene Standards at White Sands McDonald’s Are Lacking

I went to the McDonald’s at White Sands Mall in Pasir Ris last night and I was disgusted by the lack of proper hygiene and knowledge of simple concepts of cleanliness I encountered.  This was the second time I’d seen the same behavior, so I took the time to send a feedback message to McDonald’s Singapore.

This is that message:

To Whom It May Concern,

I’m concerned about the standards of hygiene that are being implemented in your White Sands, Pasir Ris branch, and possibly all of your branches if this one location is any indication.

Last night I approached the service counter for ice cream and asked the young man behind the counter for a hot fudge sundae.  He was polite enough, but when he presented the sundae he set the plastic spoon down on the counter.

This is completely unsanitary as nearly every customer that makes a purchase at this counter puts his or her hands on it, and puts money on it.  People’s hands have been in places that I don’t want to think about, and the money they’re handling has also been in many unsanitary locations, including the ground in some cases.  For example, I paid 1.50 for that sundae.  The 50 cent piece I used to make that purchase came from the floor of Tampines Mall where I found it just prior to leaving and getting on the train to head to Pasir Ris.

To make matters worse, when I told him I didn’t want a spoon that had been placed on the counter, because the counter is dirty, he gave me a new spoon, but immediately afterwards picked up the first spoon from the counter and put it back in the container with the clean spoons.  Seriously?  I just said I didn’t want it because it was dirty from being on the counter, so why contaminate all of the other spoons?  It makes me wonder if the replacement spoon was even clean.

The employees at this branch need some lessons in proper hygiene and proper handling of eating utensils.  If this is how they handle utensils then I’d hate to see how they handle the food.

Please.  Train your employees.  This is McDonald’s in Singapore, not a hut in the middle of a jungle somewhere, where cleanliness and hygiene is an alien concept.

I look forward to your response.

Regards,

Bradley Farless

Update: The manager for the outlet called me on my mobile phone and apologized for the poor service. He said that this is definitely not the standard that McDonald’s Singapore wants to set and told me that corrective action would be taken to ensure that it didn’t happen again. He asked for a description of the employee, and then asked me if there was anything he could do to compensate me for the bad experience. I told him to just make sure it doesn’t happen again. I wasn’t trying to get free stuff out of this. I just want to know that when I go to McDonald’s, the food I’m eating is clean and the utensils are clean. I’m glad to see that McDonald’s takes this issue seriously.

“Chan” Graffiti

I found this random bit of graffiti art on what I think is a power box for the pedestrian crossing light where the Park Connector path crosses Pasir Ris Drive 1 at Pasir Ris Town Park.

I don’t know what the significance is, but the word “chan” makes me think of the popular internet image boards 4chan and 2chan, where it’s short for ‘channel’.  Or… it could be someone’s name.  Who knows?  It also looks like there used to be a robot graffiti and some sort of square shaped graffiti on there too.

Pastamania at Downtown East – GREAT Service

This is just a short note I wanted to write to praise the customer service at Pastamania at Downtown East.

Tonight, we went up there to have dinner and there was a problem with the pizza I ordered.  Within a few minutes the manager came out, addressed the situation, apologized for the inconvenience and made sure that a replacement dish was made.

To follow up on that, he came back to let me know the pizza would be out in a few minutes and apologized again for the problem.

I was happy and impressed with the level of attention that was given to our problem.

When the replacement pizza came we finished our meal and then got up and walked out of the restaurant.

Surprisingly, we hadn’t gone more than five feet out the door when I heard the manager calling after us and running to catch up with us.  He said the problem with the food shouldn’t have happened, apologized for the extra time we had to wait, and that he hoped we’d be coming back in the future.  Additionally, he gave us a voucher for a free pizza.

That’s what I’m talking about!  This manager has a great personality and does his job well.  Pastamania in general has always had a great attitude in regard to customer service.  You can see it in how every cashier, waiter / waitress, and manager handles themselves.  Well, at the Tampines and Pasir Ris branch at least.

Despite there being something wrong with the dish I ordered, I’ll definitely be going back to the same location again.  Good service is worth repeat business.

Buddy Hoagies at Downtown East

The first time my wife and I saw this place we kinda scoffed at the name.  It sounds pretty lame right?  So, we didn’t bother trying it out.  We didn’t even bother looking it up online.

I was really in the mood to try something new, though, so when a Friday night rolled around and we couldn’t decide where we wanted to go, I said, “Well, how about that Buddy Hoagies at Downtown East?”  My wife couldn’t think of anything she’d rather have, so that’s where we went.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.  The first thing I noticed was that the place has a nice ambiance.

Buddy Hoagies at Pasir Ris White Sands / E-Hub

Buddy Hoagies at Pasir Ris White Sands / E-Hub

Buddy Hoagies sitting area.

Buddy Hoagies sitting area.

The place is really relaxed.  The lighting isn’t too bright either, though it seems that way in the second photo.  That’s just a bad shot!  I think it helped that there weren’t too many other people in the place at the time.  It gave the whole dining experience a relaxed feel and was conducive to conversation.

The place also has a fun look to it, with nifty little pictures up on the wall, a cafeteria style bar, and (though you can’t see them in the photo) a section of seating with nice, cushioned seats that help you relax.

The service was pretty good.  I got the impression that our waitress wasn’t having a good day, but she still forced a smile and was passably polite, if a little brusque.

The food itself was another surprise.  For what we paid I wasn’t expecting a miracle, but you definitely get a lot of value for your money.  I was so happy with our food in fact that at the time I snapped these photos on my phone and put them out on Twitter.  Some of my Twitter followers were quite jealous of my meal that night!

Buddy Hoagies sirloin mushroom steak.

Buddy Hoagies sirloin mushroom steak.

Buddy Hoagies sirloin steak.

Buddy Hoagies sirloin steak.

The Sirloin Steak

The veggies were crunchy, the meat was well cooked, and I was actually kinda shocked to see baked potatoes.  I think this was the first time I’d had one in over a year.  Too bad there was no sour cream, chives, and bacon bits to go on it, but hey, can’t have everything right?

Overall, Buddy Hoagies was a great dining experience.  The food was fantastic and the value for the food was great too.  We’ll definitely be going back.

Cosplayers in Pasir Ris, Singapore

Sunday afternoon, my wife and I were on our way to the Pasir Ris MRT station when we saw this couple strolling down the sidewalk.  I was surprised and my wife told me we should run and get pictures with them, so of course we did.

Their outfits are really cool, but I have no idea what anime or game this is supposed to be from.  Maybe someone can help me out here?