- They show an artificially lower price than what consumers are going to pay when people search for rooms.
- Then consumers are charged a higher price, disclosed in late stage booking. It’s not an optional fee, it’s required, which is why it’s part of the price of the room. However hotels hide the full price.
Marriott’s CEO deceptively claims resort fees are like checked baggage fees but the only similarity is that people don’t like paying either. He’d be more accurate comparing resort fees to taxes, since neither one is optional.
Las Vegas business has been hurting, and resort fees make discounting harder — they represent a pricing floor, and on the slowest nights can be even more than the room rate. As a result resort fees may be harming the hotel business there, where it’s desirable to fill rooms at most any price rather than leaving them empty, since there’s so much ancillary revenue to be had from guests.
So what are some Las Vegas hotels doing, now that they find themselves in the hole? Doubling down. MGM hotels is increasing resort fees at MGM, Aria, Bellagio, and Vdara in Las Vegas from $39 to $45. Including tax, that means a resort fee of $51.02 a night. That’s what Wynn, Venetian and Palazzo already charge.
By the way MGM M life Rewards announced a devaluation, too. The elite room discounts were quite generous, no longer. Fewer benefits, higher prices, is a questionable strategy for putting heads in beads.