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Marriott's $7 water, $2.25 coffee, $12 suntan lotion - what's next?

Marriott's $7 water, $2.25 coffee, $12 suntan lotion - what's next?

Jul 29th, 2004, 03:25 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 850
We just stayed at the Grand Wailea for a week, and instead of paying $10 for their bottled water we bought a couple of our own (same brand/size for 2 bucks when we made a run to Long's).

When housekeeping saw our empty bottles they assumed that we had consumed theirs and put a $20 charge on our bill. I guess that proves they don't snoop because we'd put the water, along with the $40 bottles of suntan lotion in the closet so that the kids didn't partake.
Jayne11159 is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 04:23 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,265
I was in the Lobby of the Westin Peachtree Plaza earlier this month. A guy cut his finger and went to the front desk to ask for a bandaid. The clerk sweetly told him that she didn't have any, but there was one available in his MINIBAR!! (forgot to check the bandaid prices when I got back to my room. I just remembered it when I saw this post!)
lvk is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 04:31 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 725
This is an example of why I don't stay in places that have minibars. No minibar-no outrageous prices.
rj007 is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 06:17 PM
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The bandaid incident wins the prize.
Jayne11159 is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 07:26 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 384
My personal favorite is the Vancouver, Canada airport. When we arrived several years ago we were amazed at this beautiful place, with its glass jetways, nature displays, etc. On departure back to the states we were surprised to have about $20 or so collected for the privilege of having experienced this facility. Basically an involuntary surprise user tax. I'll stick with our plain old vanilla airports and save my change.
Binthair is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 07:59 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,107
I've got no beef with hotels trying to make a profit, but I, too, despise the sleazy underhandedness of many of these charges. As long as it's up front, at least I can decide whether I want to spend the ridiculous amount of money for mini-bar items or not.

But when I check my bill and find a daily charge for the in-room safe (which I did not use) or an extra "service" charge that was not mentioned when I booked the room, I will protest vehemently and ultimately not stay at that hotel again.

If the bottle of water costs $2 at Longs, let the hotel charge $4 from the mini bar. Wouldn't that be enough of a markup? Isn't $7 a bit over the top?
Marilyn is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 08:07 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
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Don't get me started on built in "service charges". In addition to the mark up on the water, the hotel automatically charged a $10 coffee service fee per day. I checked and the filters weren't made of silk and they didn't serve Starbucks. On top of that we had to keep reminding room service to replenish our meager supply. My husband, who watches his pennies, was so mad one morning when he realized they'd forgotten the coffee packets again, he went down to the self-service cafe and helped himself to a $4 cup of coffee. From that day on they never forgot to leave the coffee in our room!
Jayne11159 is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 08:09 PM
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 231
I had read in advance that the Hilton Hawaiian Village charged for using the in room safe and for coffee, tea, water, etc. I brought along my own lock to keep my family's valuables safe and simply ignored the coffee, tea, etc. That in room coffee never tastes quite right to me anyway. The HHV did have signs indicating how much all these "extras" cost although apparenly one man didn't see them. While on the elevator, it was mentioned how this gentleman had had a cup of coffee every morning for the last four days before noticing it was $3.95 a cup!
Cats_Do_Dance is offline  
Jul 29th, 2004, 08:22 PM
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I've yet to have the misfortune of being charged for in-room coffee at a Hilton, but I've found that my supply is kept more than adequate by leaving a couple of dollars protruding from the filter basket on the coffee maker.
Flyboy is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 12:52 AM
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Craig: It's not about "entitlements". It's about good business sense, and being penny wise and pound foolish.

Most people I know who feel they're being nickel-and-dimed to death at a hotel are less likely to stay there again. Not only that, they'll tell friends and relatives to avoid that hotel as well (e.g. in threads such as this one).

I remember a while back, when a particular airline who shall remain nameless would bake fresh chocolate chip cookies during their flights and carry them through the coach section, on their way to first class. The smell of the cookies would waft through the cabin and invariably dozens of people would ask for one, and be politely told they'd need to buy a first class ticket next time if they wanted a free cookie. Absolutely incredible. Little kids would scream their heads off, and I guarantee you many parents of these kids made sure their families chose a different airline the next time around.
fdecarlo is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 04:55 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 1,476
Anyone who doesn't stay at a hotel based on one or two comments isn't I think a very "smart" traveler..whether those "comments" are made here, TripAdvisor, etc.

An example: someone above started with, "Now that the economy's improving...." really??? WHERE? Crawford?

You get what you pay for in hotels..always have, always will, and frankly, I want my Marriott stock to keep on rising...
TopMan is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 05:07 AM
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The phone charges at the Fairmont in Bermuda were $1.50 per call to "connect" to an 800 calling card that was purchased in Bermuda. We realized this very early on and felt this was just another to show how cheap the hotel really was. Unfortunately others' don't realize such charges until check-out. Like the stunned man who strictly told his teenage daughters under no circumstances should they use their mobile phones, but should ONLY use the 800 calling card when calling their friends, home, etc. - He had $600.00 in connection fees!
seetheworld is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 05:49 AM
Join Date: Sep 2003
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How about one of the newest scams w/mini-bars - Look-But-You'd-Better-Not-Touch!

Yep, be on guard.

There are hotels with mini-bars where, if you open them and you so much as pickup or move an item and even if you replace it, a sensor sends a zinger to the hotel's accounting system and (voila) you've bought it (even if you didn't take it).

A number of hotels are using this as a way of avoiding manually checking/inventorying minibars' contents and charging guests' accounts accordingly.

So, it's a good idea to check w/the front desk at check in to see if this is the case and decline the minibar key (particularly if you're traveling with the kids).
rahmanbar is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:00 AM
Join Date: Jun 2004
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Yup, my son found out the hard way about that one, rahmanbar on his recent trip to London. He just wanted to chill his water that his Auntie gave him when he arrived at his hotel (saw his parents do it many times in the states) and he was billed. The "funny" thing was he quickly opened the bar door to rectify the situation and he was billed AGAIN! Needless to say, we received a very frantic call from him inquiring as to what he should do. BTW, he had to make his call from a pay phone so he wouldn't get billed a "connection" fee for using his 800 calling card - he unknowingly racked up a sizable charge without knowing it!!!
seetheworld is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:02 AM
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fdecarlo - read my post again - I didn't say it was all about entitlements

topman - regardless of what the employment situation is where you live, it is a fact that the economy is improving. I fully expected someone to take a shot at me for saying that - you win the prize.
Craig is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:31 AM
Join Date: May 2003
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" I fully expected someone to take a shot at me for saying that - you win the prize."

You make a statement -- the economy's improving -- totally unsupported by the facts, and then congratulate yourself for predicting someone would criticize the statement?

OK, my turn: Pigs can fly.

Now, go ahead, take your best shot.
k_999_9 is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:40 AM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 1,126
I agree with the nickel & diming. I just can't stand that. And this new cutsy practice of $10 per day resort fee is an insult to my intelligence. Just charge $10 more per room per night & be done with it. Unfortunately, it is catching on and spreading like a disease amongst resorts. But, it works against them too. If I am paying for resort fees, I am going to hold those ammenities to a higher standard--just because they have brought it to my attention that I am contributing to their upkeep.
bugswife1 is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:46 AM
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The electonic minibars( that charge if you just remove an item) are not in use to avoid manual checking.

THey are used by hotels to reduce the cheating. It seems that a lot of people removed that expensive bottle of scotch, for example, and then filled the empty bottle back up with colored water.
Dick is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:53 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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k 999 9 -

Just pick up any business publication (Fortune, Business Week, Wall Street Journal) for the facts - I shouldn't have to list them here for you - this is a travel forum.
Craig is offline  
Jul 30th, 2004, 06:55 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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Don't sweat it Craig. Some people are always going to see the glass half empty.
Brian_in_Charlotte is offline  

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