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Is the hotel minibar going extinct?

Should We Say Goodbye To The Hotel Mini-Bar?

According to a recent survey by TripAdvisor.com, the hotel minibar was ranked the least important amenity for travelers in the U.S.

Only 21 percent of travelers ranked the minibar as an important amenity. What matters most to people? Free in-room wifi. Free Internet was ranked most important by 89 percent of people who were surveyed.

As KTLA hosts point out, the minibar can often be more trouble than it's worth. 'With four kids, what's the first thing I say when we walk in? 'See that? Don't touch it! Everything costs money,' one reported laughed.

Though the minibars seem wildly overpriced, the hotels aren't making much off of them.

'There is little financial reason to keep minibars,' Hugo Martin of the LA Times writes. 'Hotel consulting firms estimate that minibars generate no more than 0.24% of total hotel revenue, with much of that eaten up by the cost to check and restock the bars.'

Similarly, hotel staffers are tired of fighting with guests about whether or not they took anything from the bar.

Will you miss the minibar if it vanishes? Tell us in the comments below.

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701 Comments
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JESS January 04 2014 at 8:46 AM

I need wifi and a coffee pot in room. I bring a cooler with me so don't need a fridge. The places I stay don't usually have a mini bar so it doesn't matter. Nice to have a bar/ restaurant at the hotel.

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1 reply to JESS's comment
Felicia January 04 2014 at 10:59 AM

I have found vomit in a coffee pot in the back where you add the water. I am NEVER EVER using in room coffee again!

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deltajunebug January 04 2014 at 12:48 AM

Mini bars have come in handy when caught in a snow storm and restaurants have run out of food or closed when you get there. Been there. Certainly a small refrigerator is more needed and used. Wifi should be a given these days.

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aharrell595 January 03 2014 at 11:37 PM

No, I will not miss it at all. Take it away.

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georgechevrolet January 03 2014 at 11:25 PM

I've always ventured downstairs to the hotel bar or there is almost always at least one establishment to get drinks at normal rates close by. Also I on occasion bring my own, fill the ice bucket with the hotels free ice and then I can relax in front of the TV without having to go out or be ripped off to stay in. Really,it isn't that hard to think an hour or two ahead....well,apparently it is for some.

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Joe January 03 2014 at 11:00 PM

NO. WONT MISS IT AT ALL. ANYTHING I WANT, I BUY AT THE GIFT SHOP FOR MUCH LESS

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mark.hagan1 January 03 2014 at 10:59 PM

I don't care about mini-bars, I prefer a full size one downstairs or within walking distance. The internet is a right, and should be free everywhere. I also like special mattresses, memory foam, sleep number...

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Kathy January 03 2014 at 10:55 PM

I'd rather see FREE internet in the room and free parking, along with a simple refrigerator. I enjoy staying at Choice Hotels and Suites simply because they have FREE internet, parking and a refrigerator in the room. Sometimes I'm forced to stay at a different hotel and it seems a rip off to pay for the internet in my room for the price they charge for the room.

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starecvg January 03 2014 at 10:50 PM

Yes. I'd miss it a lot but primarily for storing food items I bring. It also keeps insulin cool for a friend. In rooms with a microwave, it is vital!

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mlsmith111 January 03 2014 at 10:49 PM

I say Leave the mini-bar in the room but either don't stock it at all, or stock it with some free water and let the occupant buy and stock it theselves with whatever they want....colas, beer, etc.since the mini-bar doesn't generate any real profit for the hotel.

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aevf101 January 03 2014 at 10:46 PM

It's not a mini bar, it's a rip off machine.

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