$660 Calamari Draws Controversy, Officials Then Launch ‘Rip-Off’ Crackdown in Greece

July 25, 2019 Updated: July 25, 2019

Several tourists became incensed after they were charged $935 for what they said was calamari, tomato juice, and six bottles of beer.

They claimed that they were charged $661 for six plates of calamari, $167 for six beers, $20 for a glass of tomato juice, $20 for two bottles of water, and $66 for three Caesar salad appetizers with chicken, the Daily Mail reported.

The tourists went to the DK Oyster restaurant in Mykonos, Greece. According to the Mail, the restaurant refused to show their party a menu or show them prices before giving them their final tab.

Francisco Tajeda, 38, a U.S. Army soldier, warned other tourists to stay away from DK Oyster.

“This place is a ripoff, look at the picture I posted,” he said.

“Avoid this place, this place is a trap,” he wrote on TripAdvisor. “They charged us 830 euros for calamari, 6 beers and 3 salads. The staff is not honest and refuse to provide a menu and prices.”

Tajeda then offered a warning: “Avoid this place at all costs! No pun intended.”

Crackdown

According to a report from The Independent, Greek authorities are cracking down on “rip-off” restaurants after tourists complained. The report named Tajeda’s complaint as one.

Some 50,500 raids will be undertaken over a several-month span, the report noted. Undercover officers have already targeted restaurants in Greece, suspending hotels in Mykonos.

A restaurant owned by “Salt Bae” chef Nusret Gokce was shut down for several days after not issuing receipts, which amounted to about $30,000.

The Times of London reported that a few dozen businesses have been closed down by officials.

The raids are being carried out at the behest of the Greek finance ministry.

DK Oyster Responds

DK’s owner, Dimitris Kalamaras, said that the area around the restaurant is luxurious, so the prices reflect that. “We regret the language of the person who posted this photo. Indeed, the prices are correct,” he told the Daily Mail.

“Although we feel that they reflect the level of our efforts, care and the quality of the food served in one of the world’s most coveted beaches, we can sympathize with an unsatisfied customer.”

But he said that to describe his establishment as a “trap is not fair.”

“Why is a luxury hotel allowed to charge 200-500 euros per night and nobody compares it to a room to let? Why does a customer of a small retailer pay for a jacket 50.00 euros and others charge up to thousands? Are we all criminals, thieves, bad people?” he asked.

The manager added, “I want to tell you from my heart that we value our customers, and we have carefully accounted for the cost in order to produce a product which we consider to be value for money.” Then Kalamaras offered a word of advice to Tajeda.

“If you can’t afford them, in order to avoid any bitterness, just opt for the special combo menu – which may not be the most satisfying option, but allows a small glimpse for those who cannot afford the experience,” he said.

Another Instance

A group of tourists said that they were charged a considerable amount for seven sodas and a milkshake after visiting a Greek restaurant.

The tourists, from the United Kingdom, said they were on vacation in Rhodes, Greece, and went to The Gate in Old Rhodes Town.

Vicky Scott, who was with four friends and family, wrote on Facebook that her group was charged more than $100 for eight drinks, according to News.com.au.

“Went to The Gate restaurant in Old Rhodes Town for a drink,” she wrote on Facebook. “The bill for eight soft drinks was €82 ($100) — €14 ($18) for a milkshake!”

“I confronted him and all he could say was ‘thank you lady’ people like him should not be allowed to rip off tourists,” she said of the manager. “On our way back he posed for the photo until he realized who I was then he followed me down the street telling me I couldn’t take his photo.”

Scott then urged other people to share her message to “stop others” from “getting ripped off” at the establishment.

The Independent reported that the bill shows two drinks cost €5 ($6) a piece, five cost €10 ($11.32) each and one cost €14 ($16). Also, an €8 ($10) service charge was also added, which is about 10 percent of the bill.

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