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£15,000 on wine at the Shard for first date? Viral story not true

By Nesta McGregor
Newsbeat reporter


"Anyway, when the bill came it was £15,000. Turns out she'd misread the menu and thought it said £50 - but it was £5,000 per bottle."

By now most of us have probably heard, read about or perhaps shared the story of THAT "expensive Tinder date".

In summary: A first date with a Tinder match. The Shard in London. Three bottles of wine. A £15,000 bill. A 10-year direct debit to pay it off.

The tale went viral a week ago after a screen recording of it being told in a WhatsApp group was shared on Twitter.

But as good as the story is, it turns out it never happened.

image copyrightTwitter/MarvAbbey

What The Shard had to say

The Shard - the UK's tallest building at 1,016ft high - is filled with offices, restaurants and bars.

For most people, trips there are reserved for special occasions.

Since the story about the £15,000 wine went viral, the company which runs businesses at the Shard has been fielding countless calls about it.

But after checking with all the vendors in the building, Real Estate Management UK (REM) says none of them were aware of any such incident.

And as for the cost?

Aqua Shard is one of the most popular bars inside the Shard and the most expensive bottle of wine on their list is a 1990 Chateau Lafite Rothschild - worth £2,300.

image copyrightAqua/TheShard

Some social media users did sniff out this might be a red-herring early on.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

What does the law say?

We all know the routine.

Enter restaurant, sit down. Order food.

At this point in the UK - after placing your order - you've entered into a contract with the restaurant.

As the law stands, if the correct price of an item is clearly written on a menu and you order and consume it - you've agreed to pay.

"If the restaurant advertise that wine at the right price and you've not looked at the pricing properly, unfortunately that would be your fault," says Danielle Lewis-James, a consumer law specialist at Slater and Gordon Lawyers.

image copyrightGetty Images

The '10-year direct debit'

A restaurant or business can't force you to sign a direct debit.

"The restaurant could ask to tie you in to a direct debit," Danielle said.

"But if you refuse, they would have to take other action. You can't be forced to enter in to anything."

It might be in their interest to work out a way for you to somehow pay your debt though.

The moral of the story?

So the story wasn't true, but it contains a lesson nonetheless.

Whether you're at the Shard, Wetherspoons, Nando's or a local park, Danielle has some advice for you.

"Always make sure you read the menu - and always make sure you can afford the prices."

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Related Topics

  • Tinder
  • The Shard
  • Viral posts
  • Wine
  • Food
  • WhatsApp

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