One of the things the previous owner of our shop, "Andy", always offered was the cheapest two-scoop cone on the block. He called it "one scoop is two scoops" which meant that you paid for one scoop, but got two. We have tried to maintain his tradition of the cheapest two-scoop by setting the price at $3.99 which (unlike for Andy) includes a free waffle cone. Most shops charge at least a dollar extra for the cone.
Walk farther east on the beach and you'll find that a 2-scoop (without the waffle cone) is $4.25, $4.65 or $5.25.
Unlike the others, we do charge the same for ice cream served in a cup or a cone as they cost us about the same. Our cups are made (in Canada) of plant material - corn and sugar - so they're 100% compostable in your green can. If we bought plastic ones (made in China with fossil fuel) they would be infinitely cheaper, the planet bearing most of the cost.
Despite our great price on the 2-scoop in a waffle cone, someone inevitably complains about the price about once a week. Storms out yelling what rip-off artists we are or some such. "I WON'T BE BACK" exclaimed the last woman, who obviously hadn't bought ice cream since 1950. We are always gracious, and offer to take the ice cream back and return their money, although no one has yet taken us up on that. I guess that expensive scoop of ice cream soothes their anger and outrage on the walk back to the car.
If people get outraged at us, I feel bad for the other ice cream shop owners. We all own or lease OCEAN-FRONT PROPERTY in Greater Vancouver. When ice cream was 5 cents, the property they sold it out of did not cost a million dollars. Not only are rents high, but shop owners only have two big months and another two or three fairly good ones to make all their money for the whole year. Same goes for the fish & chips places. We have to pay all our overhead expenses all year, with no income to offset them: gas, hydro, phone, water, internet, insurance, loan payments and equipment maintenance. Every year we have to train new staff. And we`re all at the mercy of a single ice cream distributor who raised prices this year from $24 a bucket to $32.50.
I guess my point is an educational one - none of these shop owners is rich. Most struggle to stay in business at all. Huge corporations (known as "grocery stores") can sell you food for cheap but they cannot offer you the experience of enjoying a slow lick on a salted caramel ice-cream in bare feet on the beach or watching a child`s face light up when they`re handed that luscious scoop of double-chocolate with a kind word and a smile.