TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel community, announced the results of its hotel mini-bar/fridge survey of more than 1,600 travellers worldwide. The survey revealed that most travellers think that mini-bars are a swindle. As many as 86% of all travellers said that prices were too expensive and 45% claimed to have been charged two-to-three times the amount they would normally pay. A massive 94% of travellers surveyed said they would use the mini-bar more often, if the prices were more reasonable.
It would also appear that mini-bar bills are a major cause of aggravation for guests. A quarter of survey respondents reported having a dispute with a hotel over a mini-bar charge. Men are more likely to get into a row over a mini-bar bill (32 %) than women (22%).
Travellers do however try to beat hotels at their own game. As much as 20% of TripAdvisor respondents admitted to having consumed and then replaced an item in their hotel room mini-bar/fridge. Just over half (51%) of all travellers said convenience was the main reason for using the mini-bar, while 9% admitted that having a few drinks beforehand was more likely to lead to a mini-bar raid later.
Meanwhile, it appears that some hotels are diversifying their mini-bar selection. Among the more unexpected items that travellers reported finding in their room fridges and bars were bottled oxygen, sex kits, condoms, caviar and perfume. Beef jerky and energy drinks were the least popular items travellers would purchase from a mini-bar.