University Press

How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

We went through the process for you, and it’s actually really easy

Illustration+by+Ivan+Benavides
Back to Article
Back to Article

How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

Illustration by Ivan Benavides

Illustration by Ivan Benavides

Illustration by Ivan Benavides

Illustration by Ivan Benavides

Reimy Benitez, Asst Copy Desk Chief

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Vending machines are convenient, but their snacks often cost more than the advertised dollar for a pack of Sun Chips. These costs come from the spike in blood pressure associated with watching the archaic machine you just fed your money to get stuck, leaving your coveted snack in limbo.

According to the office of Business Relations, there are 42 snack machines that vend chips and candy on the Boca Raton campus. All of these are run by Gilly Vending — a vending company based in Miami. There are also seven ice cream machines run by Ice Cream Service, inc., and Coca-Cola and microwaveable food vending machines — the amount of which Business Relations was unsure of.

The University Press ran a short Facebook poll to see just how many people have had their money stolen by any of these machines without a snack. Out of the 37 people polled, 30 have had their money taken by a Florida Atlantic University vending machine. That’s 81 percent of people who have lost their money.

With so many people having their money taken, the UP expected a lot of refunds to be given out. But after asking around, we couldn’t find a single person who even tried to get their money back.

Some thought the process would take too long. Others, like psychology major Jordaine Blake, didn’t even know it was possible. “I didn’t know you could get your money back until someone told me recently,” she said. Blake has lost money various times to the vending machines on the second floor of the Student Union.

Vending machine coupon. Courtesy of FAU.

Vending machine coupon. Courtesy of FAU.

So the UP decided to see what the refund process with the on-campus vending machines is actually like. To our surprise we didn’t have to call the company. We didn’t even have to send emails.

All it took was going to the Owl Card Center in the first floor of the Student Union and letting a staff member know that we had lost $1.25 in the vending machine upstairs. They immediately gave us these odd looking paper bills (pictured).

These bills can only be used one at a time, and have no cash value, but with them you can get that snack you wanted without having to hit the machine multiple times or attempting to tip the machine over.

The entire process took no more than three minutes. It’s safe to say that most people don’t get a refund not because they don’t want their money back, but because they either don’t know how, or think it’ll take too long.

If you find yourself losing money to a vending machine off of campus, however, the process is a little different.

Gilly Vending, has a refund section on their website. To fill this out you’re going to need the machine number — usually found on the side of the machine on a white sticker — as well as inputting personal information such as your address for delivery of compensation. The process can take several days, and might actually be more of a hassle than it’s worth.

But as long as you’re on campus, if one of those pesky vending machines takes your money, remember that a refund is never more than a few minutes away.

About the Writer
Reimy Benitez, Asst. Copy Desk Chief

Reimy is a political science major with a minor in philosophy and a certificate in women’s studies. He joined the University Press in the fall semester...

6 Comments

6 Responses to “How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus”

  1. Quasi on October 3rd, 2016 5:50 pm

    Its interesting that you mention gilly vending. Because as of a month ago + I tried purchasing a drink from one of their machines with a 20$bill there was no warning saying that you didn’t except $20 bills. The machine did not give me a beverage and would not return my money. I called left multiple voice messages name Sandy and Dan called multiple times after. I spoke to one of the customer service representative and their information was very vague be to my address my name my number said they would relate the message to The right department and that insured that they would contact me back is been a month and even as I continue to call them I have not received a single call from them. I’m in a very shitty situation right now and the money is needed can I file a lawsuit against for emotional distress would really love if someone could give me some information about that because it’s really annoying what they’re doing still one of them even hang up on me a couple times.

  2. Interwebs Police on December 2nd, 2016 3:24 pm

    To the guy whining about his lost $20. I don’t know whether or not your post was meant to be a joke, but maybe they are hanging up on you because you actually believe a lawyer would take your case to sue them for “emotional distress” from losing $20? Get real buddy.

  3. Maria on March 2nd, 2017 11:00 pm

    Broken Vending machine stole some money!

  4. Damon on June 18th, 2017 10:36 am

    I mean it’s 20$. Who doesn’t like money. It’s not whining,it’s trying to win your case dumbass

  5. jannie on July 31st, 2017 10:12 pm

    I would like to ask for MLA citation. If you could please have the sources in MLA format, please?

  6. Sindisiwe on August 3rd, 2018 4:11 am

    I buy a coke and no coke coming and money gone two twice

Do you have something to say? Submit your comments below

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    Can you leave class after 15 minutes if the teacher is late? FAU students and faculty weigh in

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    FAU science professor receives over $100,000 for shark research in Israel

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    Cheer and dance facilities removed due to football construction

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    FAU keeps your information safe — but you don’t

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    The University Press’ guide to the 2018 amendment ballot

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    A look at the diverse age range of FAU’s student body

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    FAU student organizations celebrate religious and political ideologies

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    FAU is the most diverse university in Florida

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    Out and proud: a look at LGBT services on campus

  • How to get your money back from a broken vending machine purchase on campus

    Features

    High school sophomore takes political action into her own hands

Navigate Right