A woman has been left stunned after she tried to order a £20 takeaway and found that the restaurant tried to charge her £130 to deliver it.
Alegria Gomes says she “couldn't be bothered” to cook a meal after a long day at work so she fired up the Deliveroo app and spotted New Thai Kitchen in nearby Barking, East London.
Her midweek treat – a Pumpkin Katsu Curry Deluxe Box, a Prawn Dumpling Soup and a bottle of sparkling water – came to a total of £19.95.
But then came the surprise: alongside a delivery charge which at £9.99 was about half the cost of her Wednesday supper again, was a mysterious £1 “service fee” and an absolutely incredible “£130.05 “small order fee”.
Alegria promptly bailed on her New Thai Kitchen plan and decided to heat up a pizza in her oven instead.
While she was enjoying her pizza, Alegria tweeted a screenshot of the outrageous £160.99 figure from her Deliveroo shopping basket – immediately getting a huge reaction from fellow social media users who called the crazy bill “nuts' and pointed out that it was “twice the monthly cost of hostel accommodation”.
But the restaurant was unrepentant.
A spokesperson from New Thai Kitchen called the order fee “justified” because of the distance it takes to deliver to Alegria in nearby Islington – which Google Maps estimates would take between 28 minutes and one hour at that time of night.
They added that they call each customer if their order is subject to a large charge to confirm that they'd like to go ahead with delivery, and added that they believed the bill was justified.
They said: "As a service provider we have a certain distance that we cover. If the order is beyond that, the minimum order amount has to be so much.
"The customer has the right to cancel the order, and if we see an order like this we call them up and tell them they are being charged a certain amount and ask if they still want to go ahead, then we can cancel it for them.
"If we have a customer in Central London, it wouldn't be feasible to send an order of £5 an hour and a half journey away.
"The fee is justified because if you think about it anyone can order through Deliveroo from anywhere so you have to have to look at the distance that's covered.
"The owner has set up the minimum order with Deliveroo, so if it's out of our range the minimum order has to be a certain amount."
Deliveroo stressed that New Thai Kitchen are not full Deliveroo partners, meaning they arrange and pay for their own deliveries. They added that they're in talks with the takeaway to 'advise them on how they can improve the customer experience'.
A spokesperson for Deliveroo said the minimum order fee of £15 had been reached on Alegria's order, so the additional charge was due to the delivery distance.
They added: "At Deliveroo we want our amazing customers to have the best food delivery experience possible.
"To show our appreciation to our customer, we have sent some free credit to ensure they have a great experience next time.
"We have also spoken to the restaurant partner to advise on how they can improve the customer experience."
Alegria's tweet, including the screengrab of the incident and the tongue-in-cheek caption 'maybe moving to Islington wasn't a great shout' has racked up more than 1,200 likes and retweets.
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