The numbers are out, and hotels are expecting to collect a whopping $1.95 billion in fees this year. Where is it all coming from and how can you get around it?
The latest figures came from a study from NYU’s hospitality and tourism researchers, which showed that the major hotel chains—like Hilton, Hyatt and Marriott—raked in $1.85 billion last year, and the numbers are only going up.
Part of that is due to increased occupancy, but it’s also higher fees and surcharges. It’s not that they’re adding fee categories but that they’re charging more for things like daily resort fees, mandatory tips and parking.
The Business Travel Coalition even filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission on the basis that if these fees are mandatory, they should be part of the base rate. Otherwise the advertised rate is just a marketing scam.
The airlines and cruise industry have already gotten nailed for the same thing.
My advice: If the fee isn’t fully disclosed up front by the hotel or booking site, ask the manager to remove it from your bill. And if they refuse, get all names and ID numbers, and dispute the charge with your credit card company immediately.
For more information, visit the Hotel archives.
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