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Thread: mini-bars

  1. #1

    mini-bars

    Do you have to have those things? When you're booking a room, is there some option by which you're allowed to waive access to a mini-bar?

    I ask because I've never stayed in a US or Canadian hotel.

  2. #2
    It depends on the hotel.

    Some give you a key at check-in; I suppose you could refuse it.

    Others place items in a basket in the room, with a price list.

    Or the fridge has a plastic tab which you break off to open.

    Some have a hyper-sensitive sensor that charges you for the item, even if you just touch it. It assumed you consumed it, since you nudged it.

  3. #3
    You do not have to refuse the mini-bar, all you have to do is ignore it. They are hoping that since it is there in yiur room you will be tempted to eat the $5 jar of peanuts or drink the $4 bottle of tomato juice.

  4. #4
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    I usually empty the mini-bar of most items, and put them to the side. Then I use the refridgerator for my own stuff... wine, snacks, juice, etc. Prior to leaving I'll put the Hotel's stuff back in place.

    The only thing to be careful about is some mini-bars are "automatic", meaning that once you remove an item (even if you take it out to look at it!) the price is added to your bill. I can't remember which hotel, but I've had to corect my bill twice there because I was charged for mini-bar items.

    Regards,

    Voyager
    "No matter how sophisticated you may be, a large granite mountain cannot be denied—it speaks in silence to the very core of your being."
    -Ansel Adams

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Voyager
    The only thing to be careful about is some mini-bars are "automatic", meaning that once you remove an item (even if you take it out to look at it!) the price is added to your bill. I can't remember which hotel, but I've had to corect my bill twice there because I was charged for mini-bar items.
    The first time i saw this was a few years ago at the Sofitel. I found this pretty cool at the time. It didn't take me long to start hating that system. The last time i saw such a mini-bar was during one of my last stays at the Sheraton. They're a pain & i'll only use the mini-bar if i can squeez a few cans of pop over the others already in there. More often than not with such mini-bars, i wind up with a surprise on my bill when i'm checking out. So beware. Beware of the modern-day mini-bar. Beware, beware, beware!

  6. #6
    I always refuse the key to the mini bar. They are fine with that. I usually stay at the Delta downtown or the Sheraton.

  7. #7
    The biggest problem with the mini bar is when your company declines what you have bought and goes nuts on the mini bar.

    I've often thought they would make more from the mini bar if they charged more reasonable prices... its not that you can't afford it; its just that at a certain level you feel screwed and refuse to use it.

    Another nuisance is having the "mini bar checker/restocker" burst into your room or disturb you.

  8. #8
    The last hotel I stayed at had a plastic tab which you had to break to get access to the minibar. However, they had a bottle of red wine and a basket of snacks out in the open. When they offer a key, I also decline. I prefer hotels with refrigerators, not minibars.

  9. #9

    I use to work in the Hotel business.

    Years ago, I worked in the hotel business to get me through school. There were some occasions where a hotel guest would build up a bill of $150 plus on the mini-bar. There was one occasion where it cost one guest over $250 because the escort took advantage of the free eats and drinks and stacked up a tab on his account. I guess that he did not want to look cheap and say no.

  10. #10
    Like Voyager I prefer to empty the minibar and put my own stuff in it, but this is the first time I have heard of automatic minibars. How does one spot them? Anyone know if HDLM uses them?

    I know the Omni doesn't, I have been re-arranging their minibar for years without any issues.

  11. #11
    Retired veteran hobbyist
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    Quote Originally Posted by rollingstone
    Like Voyager I prefer to empty the minibar and put my own stuff in it, but this is the first time I have heard of automatic minibars. How does one spot them? Anyone know if HDLM uses them?
    They're not that hard to miss. They look more high-tech when you look inside & there's usually a warning posted somewhere about what will happen if you lift a drink from its place. I don't believe that the HDLM uses them yet, but since they've been renovating quite a number of rooms over the past few months, who knows.

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