Ripped Off: The 9 Biggest Rip Offs In North America


So we’re already into February and no doubt all of your holiday bills have hit the mailbox. With every letter opened, there’s a sigh or two and sometimes, upon reflection, one might think “That REALLY wasn’t worth it”. Or even the almighty “I’ve been RIPPED!”.

Well it’s not only the month of December that presents us with the feeling that some products aren’t worth their price tag. CNN Money has compiled a list of goods/services that will really get your blood boiling. How can they possibly charge that?? And I can almost guarantee that there will be at least two things on record that you have or do. Can a company really charge you over 500% for something that costs them virtually NOTHING?

Check it out, the 9 BIGGEST Rip offs in North America:

9. Text Messages

We all love to use our fingers. Some more than others. Texts are basically free to send and receive. Meaning it doesn’t cost the phone company anything to handle them. But on pay-per-text plans (which, who in the gay adult world HAS), phone companies will charge as much as 20 cents apiece. That’s a 6,500% markup. Suggestion- just pay a flat rate if you’re fast with those fine “digits” of yours.


8. Hotel mini-bars

Mmmm when you’re wasted and coming back to the Hotel after a fun night of dancing on the speakers, it sounds like a good idea. However, an average hotel, mini-bar items typically cost three to four times the retail price. And at “fancy” hotels, it’s not uncommon to markup mini-bar items by as much as 1,300%.


7. Movie theater popcorn

Hold the butter, I’ll take a squirt of Becel. Or better yet, squirt me in the eye, you jackass! A medium bag of popcorn costs about 60 cents to make, and it sells for about $6. That’s a 900% markup.


6. Wine at restaurants

While Adam brings his Dad’s famous “white” to most dinners, the rest of us ask for the wine list. Maybe Adam is onto something after all! Most restaurants double the price of their more expensive bottles, and triple the price of their cheaper ones. And if you just buy a glass instead of a bottle, you’re going to pay a 500% markup.


5. Hotel in-room movies

My BFF Zack is famous for this one, typically a porn with words associated like “Milf”, “Tripple D” and/or “Orange County Housewives”. A movie rental at Rogers Video will run you about $5. But in a hotel, you’ll pay anywhere from $10 to $15. That’s a 200% markup.


4. Name-brand painkillers

I enjoy a lil’ Tylenol from time to time, even a lil’ Advil for muscle pain/fever. A bottle of Advil costs $8.49, while a bottle of the generic stuff (think Shoppers Drug Mart “Life” Brand) goes for $5.29. That’s a 60% markup, even though the no-name stuff works just as well.


3. Super gasoline

Who are you, a Jetson? Typically, you’re going to pay about 20 cents to 40 cents more for premium gas than the regular stuff. At $107.0 a litre for regular gas, that translates to a markup of 15%.


2. Learning is fun:

…and according to this, more expensive than you think. Since 1986, the cost of textbooks has increased at double the rate of inflation. Now, an average University/College student will shell out around $900 a year for textbooks.


1. “Free” credit reports

Bitch please…we’ve all seen those god-awful ads from The only problem is their service isn’t actually free. It costs $14.99 a month, or $179 a year.

  • CW

    The true awesomeness for this post is number 1. The “free credit report” Even more awesome is it that there is an ad for a free credit report in the same window. You rock.

  • As for #2….I wonder how that will change in a post-iPad world….with the iBookstore planning on offering ebooks of common post secondary texts, the cost on those items will go wayyyyyy down…i wonder how many university book stores will go under….

    HMMM….carry around a stack of text books, or my iPad…

    text books…or my iPad….

    tough choice…

  • bruin

    Tylenol rapid release works wonders…the price for that is worth it IMHO

  • Hans

    “Who are you, a Jetson?” Too funny!

  • Nate

    Wah wah…

  • Matt Peterson

    Hey Jonny its the infamous Matthew Peterson lol. Anyways dude loved your site thought i would let you know. Hope all is well ttyl.

  • Matt Peterson

    oh dear i didnt realize this was a post on your page lol haha oh well