Fewer people are visiting Las Vegas, and a prominent travel journalist who focuses on the destination says that rising fees are to blame, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Hotels in Las Vegas have been charging “resort fees” on top of their room rates for many years, but Anthony Curtis of thesaid they have risen to excessive levels.
Both the Palazzo and Venetian now add a $45-per-day resort fee to guest bills, and most other resorts charge something — even the non-Strip resorts downtown.
Parking fees are a relatively new phenomenon. For most of the city’s gambling history, it was free for anyone to park at a casino. Now, some resorts are charging $5 to park, although local residents are exempt.
“Everyone hates resort fees, but the parking [fee] is even worse,” said Curtis. “Everyone wants some kind of comp, [and] the most basic comp is free parking. That was the one comp that everyone got.”
Visitation to Vegas has declined for ten straight months. A spokesperson for the city’s convention and visitor bureau disputed the idea that higher fees are to blame, saying the drop-off “is primarily attributed to the reduction in room inventory due to renovations and upgrades at various properties, and a near-term impact from the tragic events of 1 October,” when a gunman opened fire at a concert in the city, killing 58 people.