$15.23 For a Cup of Coffee?

“Which hotel (or chain) would have such a bill?” is the question FlyerTalk member puchong asked in this discussion — along with posting a photograph of the receipt for a total of $15.23 for a cup of coffee.

$15.23 For a Cup of Coffee?

That question was never answered because the discussion has since been locked to the posting of new content; but the breakdown of the receipt for the total amount of $15.23 is as follows:

$7.00 for coffee
$5.00 administrative fee
$2.16 18 percent service charge for R/S — assuming that means room service
$1.07 tax

What I find particularly egregious is that the administrative fee was included in the calculation of the service charge of 18 percent — in essence, charging a service charge for a fee imposed on the item which was purchased.

Is Room Service Dead?

Room service in hotel and resort properties has slowly become an endangered species — and that is just fine with me, as I first wrote in this article on Saturday, April 23, 2016…

…but according to this article from Hotel Online, room service “seems to be on the way out. While plenty of hotels still offer traditional room service, guests’ tastes are evolving, and food and beverage programs must change to suit new demands. Many hotels are limiting costly room service, or completely scrapping it in favor of new F&B concepts that give guests more convenience at lower prices, plus opportunities to experience local fare.”

Those new food and beverage concepts include — but are not necessarily limited to:

  • Special Delivery
  • Grab & Go
  • Going Local
  • Social Hour


Room service is usually expensive. I do not need someone to bring my food up to the room in which I am staying. Thank goodness I am perfectly capable of getting my own food — whether that means simply picking it up at the restaurant downstairs within the premises of the hotel or resort property; or if I purchase my food outside at a restaurant or supermarket…

…and the simple act of picking up my own food downstairs saves me the exorbitant administrative fee — whatever that is — and the service charge.

I wonder how many guests actually give a gratuity on top of the service charge — as well as how they calculate it — as a space is usually available to add that. The service would have to be quite extraordinary for me to add what amounts to an extra gratuity.

I do not drink coffee; but even I know that a cup of coffee should not cost $15.23. Thankfully, many hotel and resort properties include coffee in the room which a guest can prepare for himself or herself — although I would generally advise against using the coffee maker provided in the room; as well as the glasses or ceramic cups

Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

2 thoughts on “$15.23 For a Cup of Coffee?”

  1. James says:

    If it was luwak or blue mountain, maybe make sense for the total price. But $5.00 for administration? That’s plain robbery….

  2. Scott says:

    room service is still a deal on cruise ships. If you can find somewhere in the room to eat!

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