I’d be insulting your intelligence if I asked whether you knew that the hotel minibar was overpriced. It is something we all just take for granted. However, every now and then the hotel tries to take things to the next level. Take for example this “couples pleasure kit”. It is pretty normal for a hotel to charge $20 for a cardboard box and two $1 condoms, but the Gild Hall hotel in New York city actually has the guts to demand $195 for their kit.
Sure, you’ll get a vibrator, handcuffs, condoms and lube, but seriously – $195? That scores an A+ on the ripoff meter.
$10 imported Scottish water
Water is the biggest scam in any hotel minibar. Hotels market their water perfectly – putting it right next to your bed, in the hope that you’ll arrive parched and might miss the price tag assuming the water is free.
In recent years, hotels have discovered premium water brands, and traded the $3 generic bottle for a bottle of eau de euverpriced. The Mansfield Hotel in New York City offers guests a large bottle of imported Scottish water. For $10. You need to be a special kind of thirsty to drop ten bucks on a bottle of water.
$14 Gummi bears
Minibar candy sucks. You’ll rarely find a good old Snickers bar, but there is never a shortage of overpriced organic weirdness. Or, like at the Omni Berkshire Place, a metal container with gummi bears. $14 gets you about 30 of the little bears, which means you’ll be paying just under 50 cents for each of them. Better eat them slowly.
Dealing with bad breath can save you $14
At the W hotel – The Tuscany, in New York City, the overpriced selection includes a $14 toothbrush and toothpaste. Even though a small dental set is offered for free at most decent hotels, the upscale W thought you’d have plenty of cash left to pay for their set.
Pricey water – in three sizes
The Amalfi Hotel in Chicago is another of those properties that discovered the money making machine that is water. Thankfully, they cater to all kinds of thirst with three different bottles. If you are “two large gulps” thirsty, that will be $5. If you are “need expensive imported water” thirsty, it’ll cost $7. All three bottles cost just $19. Which is about $15 more than the price you’d pay in a retail store.
(Many thanks to Oyster Hotel Reviews for providing some of the content for this article!)