Monday, April 7, 2008

The Missing Dollar....

A friend just told me this old riddle you run into every now and again so I thought I'd post a description and solution for those of you who get snagged by it.

Three men go to stay at a motel, and the man at the desk charges them $30.00 for a room. They split the cost ten dollars each. Later the manager tells the desk man that he overcharged the men, that the actual cost should have been $25.00. The manager gives the bellboy $5.00 and tells him to give it to the men.
The bellboy, however, decides to cheat the men and pockets $2.00, giving each of the men only one dollar.
Now each man has paid $9.00 to stay in the room and 3 x $9.00 = $27.00. The bellboy has pocketed $2.00. $27.00 + $2.00 = $29.00 - so where is the missing $1.00?

"...three nines are $27, plus the $2 which the bellboy got is $29. Where did the extra dollar go?"
Be careful about accepting what you are told! The flaw is in the phrase "plus the $2 which the bellboy got." This should not be added; it should be subtracted, since the $2 the bellboy got is part of the $27 dollars the three men spent altogether. If you subtract the $2 from the $27 you get the $25 that goes into the till.
Here are a few links related to the "problem"

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