These Mini-Bar Markups Will Make Your Reconsider That M&M's Craving

05/06/2015 09:12 am ET | Updated May 06, 2015

It's no secret that hotel mini-bars are total ripoffs, but do you know just how bad they can be? In an article called "The Rise And Fall Of The Hotel Mini-Bar," Priceonomics writer Zachary Crockett lays it out in one simple chart.

Seven dollars for one beer may be the headliner here, but $5 for a bag of Lay's potato chips is equally infuriating. Of course, this chart just reveals average markups. Last year, TripAdvisor’s Tripindex survey analyzed the average cost of in-room amenities in the most expensive international cities, and the average cost for a bag of nuts in Toronto hotels in 2014 was $18.23. Sit with that for a moment.

Crockett notes that mini-bars may be on their way out. Hotel managers dislike mini-bars as much as hotel guests dislike their prices. Often special staff is needed to restock fridges, spoilage is common and guests have been known to pull the ol' replace-missing-vodka-with-water trick. Plus, the egregious price markups don't always translate to profits.

Will mini-bars as we know them soon become obsolete? While guests may miss that late-night salt fix, nobody's going to miss a $18.23 bag of nuts.

Main image: Flickr/JohnNeon

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