Las Vegas: The night the Coke machine ate my credit card

Las Vegas Coke machine, MGM

One of my last days in Las Vegas, I did something really stupid. It included Coke. Not the white illegal stuff (you thought so??), but the red cans of caffeine drinks, which I was craving one night, when returning to my room at MGM after a night out. I therefore went out in the hotel corridor and walked down to the vending machine at the end.

In the picture, you can see that there are two slots: One for bills and one for credit cards. I used my credit card AND I used the wrong slot. I wasn’t drunk, I was just stupid, but before I knew, the machine ate my card! Now this shouldn’t be possible, should it? A credit card in a bills slot! Any clever vending machine design would make sure to spit out anything, which isn’t bills, shouldn’t it?

Ok, I thought. I’ll just call someone who can open the machine and give me back my card. I dialed the number on the machine and got in touch with an operator. He told me that there was no hope left. The card would be ruined after a trip through the bills handling system.

Me: How would you know?

Operator: Because you’re not exactly the first one to make that mistake…

Me: Then why don’t you fix the design

Operator: Well, it says “Swipe the card” (not “put your card in the bills slot”)…


I wanted to kick, scream and bite, but a big surveillance camera was staring at me from the ceiling, so I played it cool and went back to my room to grieve.

I always bring a lot of plastic in my wallet when I travel, so it didn’t matter that much, except for annoying the sh*t out of me.

Besides, that specific card was linked to my LoungeKey account, which gives me access to airport lounges all over the world. No card, no access. It was one of the last days before going back to Dubai, so I couldn’t even get a new card shipped over before my return flight. AARRRGGHHH!

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