Britons are becoming less afraid of complaining, with 43% of people in the hospitality and catering industry believing that levels of complaints at hotels, restaurants and bars have increased, according to a new survey. The research by Beacon found that one in 10 businesses have seen customers refusing to pay for food, drinks and accommodation as a result of complaints Despite this, 32% of companies in the sector were not sure where they stand in terms of the law if someone will not pay. The study, however, showed that although more people are becoming more outspoken, 65% of hospitality and catering businesses still believe that standards of service in the industry are improving. Diane Webster, head of sales and marketing at Beacon, said: “The perception of the British shying away from making a scene and accepting poor standards of service seems to be changing. “However, as the general consensus is that standards are rising, the hospitality industry should be careful to differentiate between genuine complaints, and dishonest claims. “It is essential that business-owners and managers know where they stand and what their rights are, in the same way that customers are beginning to.”