WiFi Cafes - don't discourage laptop people, innovate!

No need for minimum purchases in my opinion. Here's two ideas that idea and change agent Seth Godin blogged in February: 1. a breakfast club - $40 for a month of breakfasts 2. "For a flat fee, you get all the WiFi and lattes you can handle"

Lots of room for creativity here in my opinion.

From Peace, Love, and Coffee: Coffeeshop Campers & the Honor System (Roland's NOTE: CTTP is Coffee to the People, a Cafe with Free WiFi in San Francisco).:


Which brings us to the question, what is a reasonable amount for us to expect a person to spend at our shop? After some thought, it seems to me that if every student or senior spent $3/hr, every working person spent $4/hr, and every professional spent $5/hr, we would be a lot closer to meeting our monthly costs without placing an undue burden on our customers.

What do you think? Do you have any ideas for addressing the freeloader problem that are in keeping with the spirit of CTTP? How much do you think is reasonable for a person in your situation to spend per hour spent at the shop?

Postscript: Right after I posted this blog entry, I stumbled across a post by one of our regulars, Kevin Burton, on the subject of free-wifi in coffeeshops. He makes some terrific points about how businesses should stop trying to discourage laptop users and start offering them other useful paid services to defray overhead costs. I think this is a great idea, but I would like to hear some suggestions about how to do this at CTTP while still remaining accessible to our lower income clients. What kinds of services could CTTP conceivably offer that would be of value to the laptop brigades?