At London Restaurant, You Set the Price
Customers offer diverse amounts at popular place
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Feb 20, 2009 11:43 AM CST
Customers have offered a wide range of payments for their food.   (Little Bay)
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(Newser) – A London restaurant is letting customers pay what they think their meal was worth, and diners are packing the place, the Times of London reports. In the face of tough times, Little Bay owner Peter Ilic decided to run an experiment, writes Vincent Graff: “Will British reserve, and the fear that we will shame ourselves by paying too little and appearing parsimonious, outweigh self-interest?”

“People are paying a little less than the regular prices at the moment,” says Ilic, noting visits from students. “But it's early days. They can only come once and pay a little—next time, they may be ashamed.” On average, he gets about $22 per person, he says, compared to $26-$29 before the experiment. But he’s seen customers pay as little as a few cents (for tap water) and as much as $50 per person, about two-and-a-half times what their two courses were worth.