How to Avoid Paying for Canceling an Appointment

You have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow, but something came up that’s messed up your entire schedule. Whether it be a family emergency, weather, something important for work, what have you, you cannot make it to your long-awaited appointment.

So, like anyone would, you call to apologetically cancel — and you’re slapped with a nasty fee for canceling too late.

To be fair, we’re not 100% sure why this fee exists. Maybe it’s a tactic to prevent people from canceling or maybe it’s paying for preparation for an appointment that’s already been done. Whatever the reason, if you don’t have at least a week’s notice (typically, sometimes it’s 24 or 48 hours) you will have to pay up.

But what if we told you there was a borderline ridiculous way to get around that fee? It’s happened, as proven by this creative Reddit user. It all started when Redditor Sh0tgunLlama asked this simple but brilliant question:

The question was responded to by user Stellapotamus who told a story about how he/she got out of a last-minute doctor’s appointment cancellation without a fee. Here’s how they did it:

“I went to cancel a doctor’s appointment and they said it was a $200 charge without a week’s notice. I asked how much it was to reschedule and she said it was free.

‘Okay, so I need to reschedule for two weeks out.’

‘Is three weeks okay?”


‘Alright, you’re all set for three weeks from now. Is there anything else I can do for you?’

‘Yes, I need to cancel my appointment.’

‘We need a week’s notice.’

‘My appointment is three weeks away.’

‘Oh. Okay. Sure.’

‘Thank you.’

Couldn’t believe it worked.”

Reddit immediately exploded with praise for this simple but genius way to get around an egregious fee. The post pretty instantly went viral and now has well over 21K upvotes. Fellow Redditors praised Stellapotamus saying things like:

And even higher praise:

Have you ever tried something like this to avoid a large fee? What do you think of this ridiculous but clever way this person avoided an extra charge? Make sure to share your thoughts with us!