Corporate 'tipping' (AKA maximising profit opportunities)

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This topic contains 12 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  MartynSinclair 26 Nov 2019
at 13:24
.

Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)

  • MartynSinclair
    Participant

    I need some hotels in USA next week and as usual, went into my favoured brand to research and book.

    I found perfect hotels advertised at a fair price which along with my loyalty benefits, makes me smile with joy, job done in double quick time.

    However, when the reservation comes through, the price increases by around 35%. Added to the charge are:

    1. Taxes and fees
    2. Resort charge (city centre hotel I hasten to add)
    3. Compulsory valet car parking charges – no other parking available
    4. Tips

    I realise hotels have to maximise every profit opportunity, but why can’t they be more open and transparent in publishing their prices. When I spoke to the hotel, I was curtly told, all the prices are in the T & C’s of the booking. When I asked why these additional charges are not displayed in their headline price presentation – answer, out quests prefer it the way it is!!


    GivingupBA
    Participant

    Martyn said, “when the reservation comes through, the price increases by around 35%…. why can’t they be more open and transparent in publishing their prices….”

    I completely agree with “why can’t they…”. Personally I automatically avoid places which do this – it is dishonest and distasteful – I vote with my feet. I refuse to shrug it off as ‘normal business practice’ (I’m not saying you shrugged it off, Martyn).


    capetonianm
    Participant

    When I buy a product or service, I like to see the final price (obviously minus any genuine ‘options’) up front. I can’t stand market stalls and shops where there are no prices and when you ask they say ‘make me an offer’. My offer is either an absurdly low amount which they reject and I walk away, or I just walk away without a further discussion.


    AlanOrton1
    Participant

    Hi Martyn – I encounter each of the first three in your list on many US hotel stays.

    City centre hotels now joining more leisure oriented hotels in charging a resort or destination fee.

    Ft. Lauderdale is a regular stop for me and I can think of at least three Bonvoy (your choice?) branded hotels where only valet parking is offered. (I try to find on street parking, which is often possible).

    However, I’ve yet to come across a hotel where a tip has been automatically added. It may be I’ve not checked the full list of charges carefully enough at the time of making the reservation, but I’d be interested to know, what service are they adding a tip to that they are taking payment for at the time of reservation?


    MartynSinclair
    Participant

    Hi Alan

    Yes Fl, yes Bonvoy. To be clear, the tips have been added by me as I would consider it a compulsory payment.’The runners’ are generally (not always) students who get paid zero and rely on tips.

    It would be far better if the hotel website, showed the all in price rather than hiding the added surprises.

    This continual discussion about tips is made more interesting by the fact, according to a friend who runs a service business in London, the worst tippers in London, are not the English, but the Americans who like the idea that tipping is not compulsory in the UK…

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    capetonianm
    Participant

    I have been on cruises where tips are automatically added to your on board account. However the ‘small print’ gives you the option of taking the amount off if you wish to, and giving individual tips, or none if you so wish.
    On the last couple of cruises, I’ve asked them to take off 50%, which they have done without comment, and I have given the other 50% to those crew members with whom we had direct contact.


    canucklad
    Participant

    Morning Martyn

    Seems to me that they’re hooking you with a cost centric proposition and then closing the original savings with compulsory add- on’s

    Worse than Ryanscare behaviour IMO

    It would be interesting to find out if they’re at capacity and can pretty much do as they wish, or I wonder if they’d be a wee bit more flexible if you threaten to move your business elsewhere?

    Out of curiosity , and it’s pretty damn presumptive that they can even give you a pre-tipping option before you take advantage of any facilities or services, so how do they calculate the amount ?


    K1ngston
    Participant

    Hi Alan

    Yes Fl, yes Bonvoy. To be clear, the tips have been added by me as I would consider it a compulsory payment.’The runners’ are generally (not always) students who get paid zero and rely on tips.

    It would be far better if the hotel website, showed the all in price rather than hiding the added surprises.

    This continual discussion about tips is made more interesting by the fact, according to a friend who runs a service business in London, the worst tippers in London, are not the English, but the Americans who like the idea that tipping is not compulsory in the UK…

    Thats a really interesting point Martyn that the Americans are the worse tippers outside of their own environment, goes to my point in a previous thread that I hate the whole tipping concept especially being told how much I must tip when tipping is a personal thing between me and the person giving me service (or not!)


    stevescoots
    Participant

    I flat out refuse to tip in anything other than cash, always press no if it comes up on a card reader (becoming very common in Uk now “gratuity”) I never trust a company not to skim some for the bottom line


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    Again a bit late, but I was recently in New York, and while I would usually stay at the Intercon or Hilton, I rejected both due to the “Resort” charge. Resort in the case of both hotels is a bit far fetched and now the Hilton Midtown has introduced it, with a voucher for one item of cleaning, $20 in the bar and $10 in the small snack bar/shop in the lobby each day.

    Trouble is for a 3 night stay, you only get to use the cleaning twice, I never use the bar as there is always a programme put on for me, and yes I do use the snack shop, but $10 hardly buys you anything. Having stayed there for years I called them to see if I could use the resort fee at the shop, and was told “no”! There was no budging on this, even when I asked to speak to the manager so I did not stay and stayed instead at the Radisson Midtown, which was conveniently situated for me, much friendlier than the Hilton, though the rooms were a bit smaller but more than acceptable. No resort fee and much cheaper than the Hilton.


    MartynSinclair
    Participant

    Discussing the ‘resort’ charge with a couple of hotels in Florida, they gladly removed the charge as well as the compulsory valet parking charge. Just checked into a hotel in Celebration, Fl, where there is a compulsory valet parking charge. The guy in charge of parking, said the hotel charged $28 a night, but he would gladly park my car less than a few metres away on the road outside the hotel for free. We split the difference – happy days….

    As a side issue, would hotels really lose business if they just increased there room rates instead of selling a resort charge.


    AlanOrton1
    Participant

    Hi Martyn, if it is the hotel I’m thinking of in Celebration (the one right in the centre) there was, at least back in July, a lot of free parking in the immediate vicinity, on road parking bays and small car parks. You’ll be able to save yourself $14 next time 😉

    A way to avoid resort fees in Florida, and often the parking costs, is to book a hotel one star level lower. While most full service, 4* hotels in popular areas now levy these fees, almost all Residence Inns, Hampton Inns etc do not, so there are ways around it.


    MartynSinclair
    Participant

    Hi Alan – yes the same one. Valet parking last night was $28.

    Interesting to see so many hotels now charging this ‘resort fee’. I am moving down to Tampa today for a few days – Bonvoy have removed car parking and resort fee as part of the rate they have agreed for me. I think some hotels realise there is competition in the area as the original hotel I booked, same group, refused to budge on anything.

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