### The Missing Dollar

Q:

Three friends check into a motel for the night and the clerk tells them the bill is \$30, payable in advance. So, they each pay the clerk \$10 and go to their room. A few minutes later, the clerk realizes he has made an error and overcharged the trio by \$5.

He asks the bellhop to return \$5 to the 3 friends who had just checked in.

The bellhop sees this as an opportunity to make \$2 as he reasons that the three friends would have a tough time dividing \$5 evenly among them; so he decides to tell them that the clerk made a mistake of only \$3, giving a dollar back to each of the friends.He pockets the leftover \$2 and goes home for the day!

Now, each of the three friends gets a dollar back, thus they each paid \$9 for the room which is a total of \$27 for the night.

We know the bellhop pocketed \$2 and adding that to the \$27, you get \$29, not \$30 which was originally spent.

Where did the other dollar go????

A:
The facts in this riddle are clear: There is an initial \$30 charge. It should have been \$25, so \$5 must be returned and accounted for. \$3 is given to the 3 friends, \$2 is kept by the bellhop - there you have the \$5. The trick to this riddle is that the addition and subtraction are done at the wrong times to misdirect your thinking - and quite successfully for most. Each of the 3 friends did indeed pay \$9, not \$10, and as far as the friends are concerned, they paid \$27 for the night. But we know that the clerk will tell us that they were charged only \$25 and when you add the \$3 returned with the \$2 kept by the bellhop, you come up with \$30.