An Australian tourist was charged £55,315.12 ($68,060.28) for a single beer at a Manchester, England hotel, BBC News reports. And even though he's going to be getting money back, the man has been charged a four-digit transaction fee as well as interest while he waits for the hotel and his bank to sort things out.
Peter Lalor, an Australian journalist who covers cricket, was in town to report on an important tournament last week. He was staying at Manchester's Malmaison Hotel when he decided to have a beer, thinking he'd be charged £5.50 ($6.80) for the Deuchers IPA.
Lalor admits that he made a couple of mistakes during the transaction. He wasn't wearing his reading glasses when presented with the bill, and he didn't ask for a receipt, either. However, something about the transaction rubbed Lalor the wrong way, and he decided to look again and asked for the barmaid to look over the transaction.
"She checked, covered her mouth, started to giggle and refused to tell me, saying only there had been a mistake and she would fix it. She kept giggling," he said.
The barmaid spoke to her manager, who immediately started discussing arranging a refund. The problem? He'd been charged approximately ten thousand times the sticker price of the beer.Unfortunately for Lalor, the realities of international five-digit bank transfers mean that it's going to take ten days for him to get his money back. In the meantime, he says he's been losing money on interest and has been charged a $1,000 AUS transaction fee.
"Until the money comes back I won't rest easy."
Lalor is hardly a man of means. Cricket writers don't make that much money, he says.
As for the beer, Lalor said it was pretty good, although not worth six digits in Australian money.
"It's a good beer. The original version of it won a heap of awards, including the Supreme Champion Beer of Britain, but if you are thinking that no beer is worth the best part of 100,000 [Australian] dollars, then I am inclined to agree with you," he said.
This is not the first time that a multi-thousand-dollar mistake has been made at an English bar. As previously reported by The Inquisitr, back in May a diner who was eating at an upscale restaurant, in Manchester no less, ordered a bottle of Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2001, which, at £260 ($332), is still pretty pricey. However, the server accidentally grabbed another bottle, one which the restaurant sells for $5,700. Fortunately for the diners, the fault was with the restaurant and so the tony establishment chalked up the loss to the cost of doing business.