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25th Jan 2016

Restaurants Use This Menu Trick To Persuade You To Spend More Money

Have you been fooled by the ‘anchor decoy’?


Eating out is a little luxury in itself.

Whether you’re stopping off for a fancy brunch, or splashing out on a dinner date, it’s fair to suspect you’ll be spending a bit more than the cost of your local chipper on this little get together.

But a thread online has started revealing some of the ways a restaurant will try to swindle a few extra cents from your purse.

While we’re already well aware of the bottled water charge, or being seated at the bar while you wait for your table, ThoughtCatalog has added the ‘anchor decoy’ to the list of tricks you need to keep an eye on.


The ‘anchor decoy’ is basically an item on the menu that stands out for all the wrong reasons (by usually being considerably more expensive by its rival options).

Rather than intending to sell the inflated priced item to the customer, restaurants use this bait to encourage consumers to view the other options as better value for money.

As well as being highlighted or placed in a prime space on the menu, anchor decoys are more common on menus where they remove the € sign – proving to ‘minimise price sensitivity’ to people weighing up their eating options.

While you’re likely heading out to celebrate or relax over a delicious dinner, it might be worth keeping an eye on these little tricks so you have some extra cash for that extra glass of wine at the end of the meal.