Eight dirty tricks Spanish restaurants use to overcharge you

The Spanish consumer rights organization have published a list of the different ways Restaurants and bars try to trick their customers into spending more money than they intended.

VAT Prices are 10 percent more expensive on your bill than on the menu because the menu prices did not include VAT. This practice is actually illegal in Spain, even if menus include the phrase "VAT not included".

Bread ... You dig into the bread basket then realize the cost was added to your bill at the end.

Supplement for well-done meat.

Some Spanish restaurants actually charge customers more if they want their meat well done. Maybe for the extra use of electricity or the extra time the chef spent over the grill?

Supplement for ice

Some bars charge their customers for ice cubes, some even putting a price on each cube!

Charging for tap water ..

Some bars actually charge customers for tap water, a practice that is not actually illegal, as long as they include the price on the menu.

Charging you to use the bathroom

Some bars have even been known to charge for soap and paper towels.

The secret menu del día

Some bars have a menu del dia, a cheap three course lunch beloved of Spaniards, but don't publicize the fact. Some try to hide their menus because of they still believe that a law from 1965 – which stipulated that all bars should offer a menu del dia consisting of a starter, main course, bread, wine and dessert – still exists.

They think they are being clever and getting around the law by offering this menu but not advertising it – However the law no longer exists...

Charging for cutlery

A restaurant charged customers €1.50 per knife and fork. This is just as illegal as charging customers for cleaning the table or the table cloth.

Under Spanish law it is illegal for restaurants to charge customers for anything that is considered necessary for the provision of service.


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