Charged for Minibar Items You Didn’t Consume?

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Ever checked out of a hotel or even a few days later and see a random charge you don’t recognize. It could very well be for minibar items you didn’t consume. Sometimes it may just be a few dollars, however what if it’s over $100 in charges?

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Last week, I was staying at a hotel where I settled up my bill upon check-out, however a few days later got charged an additional $118 for minibar items. I called the front desk afterwards and they wouldn’t remove them as it was too large of a charge. After some back and forth and speaking with the manager only did they agree to take these charges out.

So how can you avoid minibar charges that aren’t yours?

  • When you get to your room, take a look at the minibar and see if anything looks missing. Sometimes it won’t be obvious, but if you look in it and see two missing slots for drinks, ring up the front desk. It’s always better to make them aware before you get charged.
  • If you don’t plan on using the minibar, you can request to have the minibar cleared. While some hotels may charge for this, most do it for free especially if you need to use it to keep items cool if you have dietary restrictions.
  • When you check out, take a picture of the minibar with all the items intact, so if you do get charged, you have proof that the items are still there.

Have you been charged for items in the minibar that you haven’t used before? Please share your experiences before and how you dealt with it. 

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

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  1. My biggest pet peeve. I always get an after charge. A few dollars and many times more. Seems like a money maker. But seriously, over a hundred dollars? They are saying you consumed that your last day? Otherwise it would have been accounted for with the daily maid service!

  2. It once happened to me in Lyon. After checkout, a charge of EUR 100 appeared on my credit card. I thought it was because I forgot to return an adapter plug. On my next visit, I sheepishly returned the adapter and hoped they would take the charge off my bill. It was not about the charger; someone had nicked 2 Champaign splits and 2 fancy chocolates from the fridge. After protesting, they removed the charge.

  3. I never had a minibar charge, but I did have a room-service charge incorrectly charged to my room. I caught this at checkout (thus why you should always double-check your final bill) and found out that they billed the right room, but off by 1 floor.

  4. I hate it when they have sensors that charge you even if you just bump it by accident or pick something up. Especially when you have young kids like I do. Be vigilant in reviewing your bill!

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