Singapore Couple Return Their Trays & Clear The Table Behind Them, Malaysian Café Expresses Thanks
While this initially caused disquiet among some Singaporeans, it seems the practice has become a habit for many of us.
A young couple, reportedly from Singapore, were recently seen returning their trays at a café in Malaysia, though they technically didn’t have to do so due to the absence of fines.
Their actions earned them praise from netizens for setting a good example.
Video of thoughtful gesture shared by café
The simple but thoughtful gesture was shared in a TikTok video by Kopi & Kueh, a café in Port Dickson.
The CCTV footage, which was posted on Thursday (7 Dec), has already gained 80,000 views and more than 2,000 likes.
In the caption, folks from the café wrote in Malay that they hoped to see more customers like this.
Singapore couple stack plates on tray to return them
In the video, the couple had already finished eating and instead of just leaving, piled their used plates, bowls, and cutlery onto one tray.
The man then rose to carry the tray away.
Before moving off, though, the man stopped to push the bench he was sitting on under the table with his legs. The woman also ensured the chairs she used were tucked neatly under the table.
This is something that some diners might forget to do while preoccupied with returning their trays.
Woman clears table next to them
After the couple walked off camera, the woman subsequently returned to do something more thoughtful.
She proceeded to clear the table behind them, which had been left in a mess by other customers.
Clearly, this wasn’t her responsibility but she did it anyway, impressing the café operators who remarked about it in their caption.
Singapore couple return trays to grateful staff
Though the café didn’t have a tray return corner — possibly not expecting customers to return their trays — the man returned his tray to a counter.
The woman then returned the tray from the other table to the smiling staff.
They were obviously grateful to have part of their burden lifted by the couple’s considerate actions.
Netizens applaud couple
Netizens applauded the couple in the comments, with one saying she respected customers like these.
While some supposed that the couple were Japanese, who’re renowned for cleaning up after themselves, others disagreed, pointing out the woman’s tattoos that would be unusual for a Japanese.
Others identified the couple as Singaporean and were happy to note that they were “trained” well in Singapore.
A commenter explained that this “training” comes from the recently introduced law that fines people for not clearing their trays.
Finally, someone claiming to be a friend of the couple confirmed that they were from Singapore. The café asked him to pass on their thanks to them for showing a “great example”.
Owner pleasantly surprised at couple’s actions
Speaking to Sin Chew Daily, Kopi & Kueh’s owner said they were pleasantly surprised at what the couple did as very few customers cleared their tables.
Though they have encountered customers who cleared their own tables, the couple from Singapore had even cleared tables used by other customers.
They shared the footage so that Malaysians could learn from the couple’s example and lighten the burden on staff.
Picking up after yourself even without fines
While it appears that the law in Singapore is the main reason why we clear our tables, we like to think that basic civic consciousness won the day in the couple’s case.
After all, as they weren’t in Singapore, it could’ve been all too easy for them to leave their clutter behind and be free from the fear of fines.
The fact that they stuck to the good habit of picking up after themselves is worthy of plaudits, indeed.
Hopefully, Singaporeans and Malaysians alike will learn from their example and we won’t need fines at all.
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Featured image adapted from Kopi & Kueh on TikTok.
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