Minibar charges for items I didn't buy

 
Old May 18, 14, 6:34 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: CLT
Programs: US CP, HH Diamond, SPG Platinum
Posts: 261
Minibar charges for items I didn't buy

I recently stayed at the Park Lane Sheraton in London for 6 days. Upon checking out, there were a bunch of minibar charges on my bill. Each item listed what it was for--diet coke, Pringles, etc. Maybe 7 different charges. I did not use the minibar. Actually, I didn't even know I had one. I asked that the charges be removed. The front desk attendant did remove them, but his attitude made me feel like he didn't believe me and he thought I was trying to cheat them. So, I asked how this might happen. Could they have not restocked before I checked in? Maybe put the wrong room number down?

I've had this happen once or twice before at other hotels, and it's always made me feel bad. Any ideas why this happens? I do know some hotels have sensors to know if an item has been picked up, and charges you. That is not the case here, as I did not touch any of the items.

Just curious, and I'd like to avoid it if possible in the future.
Argonott is offline  
Old May 18, 14, 6:50 pm
  #2  
Suspended
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: New York, NY
Programs: Delta - Gold; Starwood - Platinum; HHonors - Diamond & Avis Preferred
Posts: 10,869
Originally Posted by Argonott View Post
I recently stayed at the Park Lane Sheraton in London for 6 days. Upon checking out, there were a bunch of minibar charges on my bill. Each item listed what it was for--diet coke, Pringles, etc. Maybe 7 different charges. I did not use the minibar. Actually, I didn't even know I had one. I asked that the charges be removed. The front desk attendant did remove them, but his attitude made me feel like he didn't believe me and he thought I was trying to cheat them. So, I asked how this might happen. Could they have not restocked before I checked in? Maybe put the wrong room number down?

I've had this happen once or twice before at other hotels, and it's always made me feel bad. Any ideas why this happens? I do know some hotels have sensors to know if an item has been picked up, and charges you. That is not the case here, as I did not touch any of the items.

Just curious, and I'd like to avoid it if possible in the future.
It happens occasionally, they removed it. If you felt there was an issue with that FDA, you should have spoke to his manager.

If it happens again, just deal with it at checkout.
KENNECTED is offline  
Old May 18, 14, 7:38 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: CEB - primary/YVR -secondary
Programs: AC*Super Elite (100K) / PR*Elite / AY*Platinum (OWE) / SPG*Bonvoy Ambassador (LTT)
Posts: 1,808
I agree, it happens sometimes and goes both ways. There are times (with the sensors) things ive taken out from the minibar were not charged upon check out (i write everything down on a piece of paper what ive consumed and for reconciliation).

And IMEces, Sheraton Towers Hyde Park do have snotty front desk anyways. So dont take it personally
supatight80 is online now  
Old May 18, 14, 8:11 pm
  #4  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: BOS/UTH
Programs: AA EXP, LT PLT; QR PLT; Bonvoy LT TIT
Posts: 12,594
I'm sure that I stay at many fewer properties than most here; but this has never been a problem for me. When I use the minibar, I keep track on the provided tally sheet and take it with me to the FD when I checkout. On those few occasions when there's been a discrepancy, never a problem, and never an attitude. IME errors have gone both ways, too.
Dr. HFH is offline  
Old May 18, 14, 8:18 pm
  #5  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 44,595
Error on your bill, you brought it to the right person's attention, they fixed it. That should have been the end of it.

Unless you're an auditor for the property, asking the next question apparently led to the poor attitude. I would drop it.
Often1 is offline  
Old May 18, 14, 9:00 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: HEL
Programs: anti-MaRiot SPG-P IHG-S HH-D LeClub/CC-G, BA/A3-G DL/AY-P, Octopus
Posts: 5,008
OP, no drama here, move on and enjoy your vacation/trip.
remymartin is offline  
Old May 18, 14, 9:45 pm
  #7  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: YVR
Programs: AC S100K 2MM; UA MP Premier Silver; Marriott Bonvoy Lifetime Titanium Elite
Posts: 29,235
Originally Posted by Argonott View Post
I recently stayed at the Park Lane Sheraton in London for 6 days. Upon checking out, there were a bunch of minibar charges on my bill. Each item listed what it was for--diet coke, Pringles, etc. Maybe 7 different charges. I did not use the minibar. Actually, I didn't even know I had one. I asked that the charges be removed. The front desk attendant did remove them, but his attitude made me feel like he didn't believe me and he thought I was trying to cheat them. So, I asked how this might happen. Could they have not restocked before I checked in? Maybe put the wrong room number down?

I've had this happen once or twice before at other hotels, and it's always made me feel bad. Any ideas why this happens? I do know some hotels have sensors to know if an item has been picked up, and charges you. That is not the case here, as I did not touch any of the items.

Just curious, and I'd like to avoid it if possible in the future.
I got charged for wine (that I did not lift/remove) from the minibar from the Park Lane Sheraton in May 2013, and it showed up as an extra charge on my CC a week after I checked out. A quick email to my ambassador took care of it.
yyznomad is offline  
Old May 19, 14, 3:20 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Toronto, Canada
Programs: Liftime Titanium Elite Marriott
Posts: 1,752
This happened to me at this hotel about 12 years ago. I cleared out the whole fridge to put my own soft drinks. I had a fat charge.
tfong007 is offline  
Old May 19, 14, 6:18 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: USA
Programs: AA-CK, Marriott Lifetime Titanium
Posts: 1,398
The discussion at the front desk never bothers me regardless of agents attitude. If I did not use/eat/drink it there is no reason to pay. What is insidious is the CC charge a week or so later. They know most people if they discover it will not dispute it. Also as a CC charge all you know is the hotel charged you for something else - it never says what.

I'll have to think about the Ambassador part; I'm of the mindset to contact my Ambassador only for really "important" things (ie. is my wife with me on the trip .
MikeFly is offline  
Old May 19, 14, 6:07 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,988
Originally Posted by Argonott View Post
I recently stayed at the Park Lane Sheraton in London for 6 days. Upon checking out, there were a bunch of minibar charges on my bill. Each item listed what it was for--diet coke, Pringles, etc. Maybe 7 different charges. I did not use the minibar. Actually, I didn't even know I had one. I asked that the charges be removed. The front desk attendant did remove them, but his attitude made me feel like he didn't believe me and he thought I was trying to cheat them. So, I asked how this might happen. Could they have not restocked before I checked in? Maybe put the wrong room number down?

I've had this happen once or twice before at other hotels, and it's always made me feel bad. Any ideas why this happens? I do know some hotels have sensors to know if an item has been picked up, and charges you. That is not the case here, as I did not touch any of the items.

Just curious, and I'd like to avoid it if possible in the future.
How does this happen? Easy. The 'mini bar checker person' writes down the wrong room number.

Cheers,
Flews is offline  
Old May 19, 14, 6:16 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,988
Originally Posted by tfong007 View Post
This happened to me at this hotel about 12 years ago. I cleared out the whole fridge to put my own soft drinks. I had a fat charge.
At most properties, they will do this for you if you ask.

Cheers,
Flews is offline  
Old May 19, 14, 9:56 pm
  #12  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: GVA (Greater Vancouver Area)
Programs: DREAD Gold; UA 1.021MM; Bonvoy Au-197; PCC Elite+; CWC Au-197; CCC Elite*; WoH Dis
Posts: 49,485
Originally Posted by Flews View Post
How does this happen? Easy. The 'mini bar checker person' writes down the wrong room number.
These days, many minibars are fully automated so you can get charged if you bump the refrigerator or sneeze too hard.
mahasamatman is offline  
Old May 20, 14, 12:56 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: TSV, Australia
Posts: 2,370
Originally Posted by mahasamatman View Post
These days, many minibars are fully automated so you can get charged if you bump the refrigerator or sneeze too hard.
I have never seen one of these, but all my stays are in either Australia, India, or Asia so maybe it is a regional thing.
camsean is offline  
Old May 20, 14, 3:46 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Programs: UA Gold 1MM, Marriott Ambassador/Lifetime Titanium, Accor Silver, Club Carlson Gold, BW Diamond
Posts: 2,414
Originally Posted by mahasamatman View Post
These days, many minibars are fully automated so you can get charged if you bump the refrigerator or sneeze too hard.

Originally Posted by camsean View Post
I have never seen one of these, ………. maybe it is a regional thing.
No, it's an exaggerated thing.

Last edited by clublounger; May 20, 14 at 11:07 am
clublounger is offline  
Old May 20, 14, 5:07 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: HEL
Programs: anti-MaRiot SPG-P IHG-S HH-D LeClub/CC-G, BA/A3-G DL/AY-P, Octopus
Posts: 5,008
I first saw the automated minibars in 2001. Since then, I see them less and less.
remymartin is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: