But in the UK they have no idea how to run a business and run off the two people who were paying often.
I would have just upped the prices a bit or changed the menu. Take advantage of the fact that these guys obviously like the food.
How are they the restaurants best customers? They are eating more than the cost of the buffet, which is netting the business a net loss. Plus, they were not ordering any drinks, which typically generate a high margin to offset the low margins generated by buffets.
A business has the right to choose who they wish to have as customers - I encounter potential customers nearly everyday who I politely inform that I cannot be of assistance to them and refrain from offering any more details.
The comments from locals that accompany the story do indicate that the restaurant has changed the wording on its menu to include verbiage that somewhat limits the buffet, which is prudent. It is absurd that some people feel the need to go in and eat a week's worth of food at a restaurant. Of course, the easy solution is to just remove the choice of buffets for everyone to prevent the minority slobs from tanking your business.
One day I was at the local Chinese buffet at dinnertime. Dinner was $2 more, as it included King Crab Legs. Two fatties came in, ordered water, and proceeded to eat nothing but Crab’s Legs. They went back at least 10 times whilst I was there. I was offended,,,, and embarrassed!
How are they the restaurants best customers? Because they are prime evidence that the food is good and there’s plenty of it. For every guy like these two, there are many women and children who will come in and eat very little. Now, in you local advertising, who would you use? The big guys or the picky little women and kids who don’t appear to want to eat your food? You aren’t from the UK, are you?
No business is immune to losing a little on individual transactions, but those losses are generally offset by the vast majority of profitable ones.
"All you can eat" is a draw, and will bring in lots of folks who really can't eat as much as they think. There will be a few who can consume relatively large amounts of food, but they will often bring other customers in who cannot.