This week I had a quick business trip to Chicago for a conference. I stayed at a nice hotel that caters to business travelers, so I expected to pay a few dollars for the 1L bottle of water that was in my room. I was shocked when I read the fine print on this tag.
Even though I get reimbursed for my travel expenses, I don’t like to waste my firm’s money, so I put the water bottle down and paid $2.75 for a 3/4 L bottle of water at the gift shop–a bargain in comparison!
Later I noticed this 8 oz. bottle of water in the bathroom.
Yep, that tag says $7.00 too!
Now, I figured that the price on the small water bottle was a mistake. I was nearly certain that that small water bottle in the bathroom was supposed to be complementary, but I didn’t drink it–I didn’t want to be wrong!
As I was discussing this pricing with a colleague who was staying at the same hotel, he remarked that the large water bottle was on a tray with a sensor, so I might have been charged if I had moved the bottle. Now, I know that hotels have sensors in the refrigerators, but I didn’t realize that the innocuous-looking tray that held the water bottle and a few cans of chips and M&Ms was a computerized device ringing up charges each time I picked up a package to read the price or nutrition label!
I pulled up my hotel charges and saw that I had indeed been charged for the water … $9.30 with tax! The front desk reversed the charges when I called to tell them that I had not opened the water bottle. They also confirmed that the small bottle of water in the bathroom was complementary. Still, the experience left a bad taste in my mouth. (No apologies for the pun!)
I do have some good news on the water front. I love the new Camelbak water bottle I got last week. I found it in the cycling section of a sports store, but it is just what I need for my One Direction fuel belt.
The top has a twist-lock feature, but even if it is open it does not leak or drip. You have to squeeze the body of the bottle slightly to get water to come out. It performed well during the GW Parkway Classic. I left it in the open position and nothing splashed out and it was really easy to get a drink when I wanted one.
How much have you paid for a bottle of water in your hotel room?
Have you been surprised by other hotel charges?