Introduction: For the surgical treatment of gall bladder diseases, laparoscopic cholecystectomy has been accepted as the gold standard. The minimally invasive procedure is undeniably superior in various respects when compared with open surgery and this is also true on the aesthetic criteria when the conventional laparoscopic cholecystectomy (CLC) is compared with the mini-laparoscopic cholecystectomy (MLC). Objective: Evaluate the hospital charges associated with these procedures and specify the differences concerning these techniques. Method: Comparative and retrospective study of hospital charges, with 40 consecutive patients, who underwent laparoscopic cholecystectomy at a private institution in Recife, Brazil. There were two groups with 20 patients each. One group underwent conventional laparoscopic cholecystectomy and in the other the minimally invasive approach was performed. The surgeries were performed between July 2006 and December 2007 and some actual charges concerning individual differences were replaced with standardized charges for all patients. Only the hospital charges were considered in this study. The arithmetic mean was used to compare the total charges for the entire procedures. Results: The MLC procedures showed no significant difference in total hospital charges compared to the CLC approach. Charges totaled R$ 2470 (Brazilian Reais) in the minilaparoscopic technique; the total charges for the conventional laparoscopic surgery were around R$ 2550 (Brazilian Reais). Conclusion: The equivalence of hospital charges for the two procedures suggests that the mini-laparoscopic cholecystectomy (MLC) should be widely recognized among surgeons as offering better aesthetic results the conventional laparoscopic procedure. Studies comparing patient satisfaction with the surgical result, difference in post-operative morbidity, pain, and recuperation for the two procedures are needed.