Hotel chains doing away with the minibar

By Chris Howcroft,

The hotel minibar has been a staple in hotels for many years now but it seems that hotels and travelers are agreeing that the minibar is not in as high demand as it used to be. According to research from the PKF Hospitality Research, minibar sales have dropped 28 percent between 2007 and 2012, which is leading to big changes in the major hotel chains.

The Huffington Post learned that the major hotel chains including Hilton, Marriott and Grand Hyatt are trimming down what they offer in the minibar or not even having anything inside, just allowing the guests to have a mini-refrigerator in their room which they can use how they choose. The research also shows that due to the prices being slightly expensive, travelers have decided not to purchase anything from the minibars.

There is also research that shows that the minibar is not as highly demanded as it used to be. It seems that more guests would prefer to have free wireless Internet than have a minibar in their room, according to Business Insider. There have also been several cases where the charges from the minibar are being disputed due to an error in the use of the minibar.

It seems that instead of using the minibar, people are buying their snacks and drinks at convenience stores or going to the hotel bar instead of purchasing items from the minibar. Hotel lounges and bars saw a 4.9 percent increase in revenue between 2007 and 2012.

The minibars have been ranked the least important amenity in hotels currently. The first minibar appeared at a Hilton in Hong Kong in 1974. It will be interesting to see the day when the final minibar is removed from all hotels.



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