To me adding $2.50 onto a customer's print order is as dumb as tacking a fuel surcharge onto a taxi ride. Both of these services require what the extra fee is supposed to cover; you can't print a file without opening it just like you can't get anywhere in a taxi without gas. If a company needs to charge an extra fee in order for a service to remain viable then the price should simply be raised rather than hidden on a receipt or behind a technical sounding phrase like "digital rendering"!
I hope that this disturbing trend stops right now. Companies, stop using asterisks or extra fees to have the "cheapest" prices on the block and consumers, stop taking it when companies slap on an extra fee like this. Although Joel is already looking for local independent print shops, I have a bit of advice to get around the fee and to be enough of an annoyance that the fee is waived for future trips. Since the first file is always free, take the approach I took with 1 per purchase coupons back in college. Go through the checkout once for every file and eventually the clerk will get so fed up with you and the whole process that she will skip "digital rendering" charges and process the order as one just to get you out of the store.
If you come across companies pulling stunts like this be sure to let WalletPop know by leaving a comment below.