Tourist hit with €2 fee for sandwich being cut in half

By Steve Hopkins

August 10, 2023 at 1:00pm


No one show this to Irish deli workers.

A tourist got a shock at the end of his meal in a restaurant in Italy, noticing there was a charge for slicing his sandwich in half.

The holidaymaker was charged €2 for having his meal split at Bar Pace in Gera Lario, at the northern end of Lake Como.

The visitor, from Milan, ordered a meatless sandwich with french fries inside, which he split with a friend.

In a negative review on TripAdvisor, the disgruntled diner explained that he hadn’t even asked for the sandwich to be sliced.

“Unbelievable but true,” the man captioned a photo of the receipt on the review website.


The receipt lists the sandwich for €7.50, Coca-Cola for €3.50, water for €1.50 and espresso for €1.20, along with the debated “diviso da meta”, or “cutting in half” fee, amounting to €2 euros.

The customer gave the restaurant a one-star review.

It has an average of four and a half stars, based on over 100 reviews.

The restaurant’s owner, Cristina Biacchi, defended the fee telling the Italian newspaper, La Repubblica: “Additional requests have a cost.”

“We had to use two plates instead of one and the time to wash them is doubled, and then two placemats. It wasn’t a simple toasted sandwich, there were also French fries inside. It took us time to cut it in two.


Biacchi also noted to the publication that the customer did not complain or question the surcharge at the time.

New York Post noted the practice is not unheard of in expensive cities and popular tourist destinations in the US, where frugal eaters (and those with small appetites) are sometimes hit with a share charge, or a split plate charge, to make up for their lower than average table bill.

Some NYC eateries even ban the practice of sharing, the Post noted.

Since the sandwich splitting story went viral, TripAdvisor has been forced to pause reviews for Bar Pace, which has come under attack.

The website stated: “Due to a recent event that has attracted media attention and has caused an influx of review submissions that do not describe a first-hand experience, we have temporarily suspended publishing new reviews for this listing.”


Header image via Getty 

This article originally appeared on


- 'Lasting damage' caused to 1,000 year-old stone at Glendalough

- TV licence payments down nearly €3.7mil in wake of RTÉ payment scandal


- Irish Government to discuss period and menopause leave