I don't get it.
Ever since the economy collapsed, my business has been down. We have less customers, WAY less customers. Our business makes less money than it used to. In order to adjust, we've had to lower our prices, even though we spend more on advertising. That means way less money coming home than a few years back when it was booming.
On the other hand, the restaurants where I eat have increased their prices, sometimes by more than 50%. I used to get my mixed-grill "to go" at the corner lebanese hole in the wall for $11.95 a couple of years ago, now it's $18.95. I used to buy a thali from the Indian restaurant down the street for $13, now it's $21.
When I ask the restaurant owners how they can raise prices in a time of crisis, they explain to me that the price of gas increased, and therefore sourcing products for them is more expensive than it used to be.
But how can I spend twice when I have half the money? I can't. Result? I no longer go out, I no longer buy food "to go". I'm no longer a customer of the neighborhood restaurants where I used to eat 3 times a week. They have become ridiculously expensive IMO. The other day I wanted to buy a dish at little local hole in the wall: $15 for a plastic box with white rice, boiled veggies and a little bit of beef stew full of huge bones? No, thank you.