The $560 Ukrainian Meal Scam Shouldn’t Be Happening
Comes an email…
I’m a middle class, middle aged, divorced American guy who visited Odessa in September. I went out on a date with a young lady and her mother to dinner at a French restaurant.
It looked nice but not too high end.
We had a light appetizer, each had a main course, dessert ( ice cream).
To drink we had a bottle of white wine and three glasses of water.
The bill came back to 13,000 UAH!($560 US).
Was that normal or was I ripped off?
Yes, he was absolutely, positively ripped off.
For the record, the restaurant was “Grand Prix” in Odessa, and no, of course, they have no prices on their menu, at all.
Unfortunately, this is a pretty common thing in Ukraine, as well as other parts of the world.
Poor guys, who just want to find a decent girl, because there are such few around in the US…
Then this happens.
Anyways, the point is this:
If you have this kind of money to burn, congrats, but you need to have the brain to go with it.
Ukrainian Meal Scam – How It Works
Here’s how this usually goes about.
A guy will be on a dating site, and contact a girl about a meet. She’ll say yes, but she’ll often times be mighty, mighty picky about where she is going on this date. She won’t like X restaurant because the food is too oily, or won’t like Y restaurant because they don’t have her favorite wine on the list.
It can be anything, but it almost always comes back to her wanting to go to a very specific restaurant with you, and being unwilling to budge.
Of course, she’s attractive, so the Ukrainian meal scam begins…
She eventually convinces you to go with her to her place of choice. The vixen eyes and beautiful hair convince you. And then, exactly what was described by the reader above happens.
If you’re lucky, there will be a menu and there will be prices on it. But check, make sure, and THINK about it. If a steak at the restaurant you ate at the night before was $10, and this one is calculating at $100 — the red flag should be waving. This is the Ukrainian meal scam beginning to happen. Next comes the expensive caviar, champagne, or whatever else they can mark up like crazy.
If you happen to spot all this before ordering, you naturally need to man up and get out of there.
If it’s after the fact, when the final bill comes, you’re probably better off just paying it, especially if you are not in the city center and don’t have your wits about you.
That’s our $0.02, but really, the main lesson should be that you NEVER let her pick the place.
And also, never, ever buy her a laptop.