Hotel charges (rip off licence)

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This topic contains 23 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by  LuganoPirate 20 May 2014
at 21:24

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  • Anonymous


    I was going to comically title this topic, but the more I thought about it the more I realised that it is actually quite serious, and in truth is probably a shameful state of affairs that we probably all just don’t bother about because it’s on the company account or if it does rankle us we just shrug our shoulders and pay up anyway.

    On other threads we’ve discussed at length all the interesting revenue streams airlines are dreaming up that used to be free, but are now becoming the norm.

    Well I’m fed up with hotels taking the proverbial p*** …..
    My top 3 rankles …..

    1) Exactly how can the Holiday Inn justify charging me £4.50 to deliver my dinner to my room, a distance less than 50 yards, when my local Indian/Chinese charges £1.50 to deliver over a mile!
    Oh and like the delivery driver the room service chap still expects a tip! I’ll add that my local also delivers food hot unlike the Holiday Inn or in last night’s case the £3 to deliver cold spaghetti at the Copthorne on the Quayside!
    2) Bottles of water !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How exactly can they justify the mark up, that makes a bottle of WATER more expensive than a pint of beer?
    3) Charging for Wifi, various prices but normally much more than the most expensive monthly data roaming charge and when it does arrive, its slug speed.

    I can list many more ancillary charges that are totally ridiculous, but I’d rather hear from the rest of you. And importantly why are we so compliant when paying for them ?


    Resort fees are the insidious creeping rip off of the hotel industry. Compulsory price gouging not visible to the consumer at booking but really should be part of the advertised price, (like taxes and fuel surcharges used to be on airfares).


    Same as the airlines. Keep your headline cost low and load in the extras.


    Hi Simon

    I would agree with you if the headline cost was indeed low. Alas in most cases it’s predominately chain hotels that have these insidious charges over and above an inflated room rate, a room rate that can be especially overinflated if the hotel is near full occupancy.
    And in the case of the “plate charge” your usually paying lush restaurant charges for vastly inferior food. Last night’s £12 for a plate of lukewarm bland chicken pasta! And £7 for 4 chicken wings!
    And the practice of charging more for a newspaper than the cover price, I’m not sure that’s even legal, it’s certainly not in shops so what makes hotels different.


    True but they also rely on a sense of inertia ie it’s easier to walk into their restaurant than to go outside.

    Not to mention rip off Internet charges.


    I agree with canucklad – if the headline cost is low you can tolerate the ‘pay for anything else’ concept. For example I just stayed at a hotel in Hamburg which belongs to the German ‘Das Hotels’ chain. It was excellent value for money and charged very reasonable prices for extras – for example an early check in was a modest 15 euros. A late check out the same. All this could be requested at he time of booking online.

    What I think is ridiculous is when top charging hotels still penny pinch or have ridiculous policies – for me the Sofitel Sydney was an example of this. I requested a bucket of ice to my room – A$7 for the privilege. Internet was not free. And the most annoying aspect was as a top tier Accor loyalty card holder I receive access to ‘Club Lounges’ at Sofitel hotels around the world. Buried deeeeeeeep in the T&C’s are two exceptions – the Sofitel Sydney and Melbourne.


    I now refuse to book a hotel unless they offer me their top level of wi-fi service as part of the rate. That means I’m staying in more and more Accor and Swissotel properties which I’m finding very good. I’m simply not paying extra any more for what is now an every day commodity.


    My biggest bugbear is when they add a €1 to the bill for charity. In my case last week when Le Meridien added it for the benefit of UNICEF and I hadn’t noticed it amongst all the other charges.

    It’s not the Euro and I’m not against charity, but I want to choose which charity I give to and not have It thrust upon me and make me feel guilty for asking them to take it off.

    I spent over €1,500 there and if they are so keen to support UNICEF let them give the euro from the room rate and while I admit I should have checked line by line, I didn’t, and seeing how the bill was about right and of course being in a rush, I paid.


    And Internet charges. I fully agree with the above and the iniquitous charge they make and the way it’s charged. In my case last week,
    € 8 for 1 hour
    € 14 for 4 hours
    € 23 for 24 hours
    and that was for the slower rate. 50% more for the hi speed one.

    If it were really for an hour I could cope, but the hour starts from log on and finishes one hour later. Even if it’s not being used. And worse, at Le Meridien it was on a per device basis, so thank goodness for personal hotspots! Why not charge, if they must charge, on a MB basis, that’s much fairer, but of course much less profitable.

    At my next hotel in Nice, Aston La Scala, which cost less than half the Meriden, wifi was free throughout the hotel, login with name and room number on up to 5 devices. What a difference.


    On a more general basis, I remain horrified at the basic room rates in London. The Shangri-La (in the Shard)has just opened, for £450 per night, probably, but I haven’t checked, + breakfast and all other add ons… Wonder if internet is extra..

    OK – you get a decent view…


    And I wonder if the £450 rate includes 20 per cent VAT ?


    I have to agree with John H , I only book hotels that offer free wifi , the missus does her fruitcake if there’s no Internet , we only travel for leisure and consider wifi very important , so for business it has to be essential .

    I agree with LP too on charity donations , it’s such a minor amount that you would look foolish to have the charge removed , but when all the 1€ amounts are added up it is then used by the organisation to make THEM appear generous and charitable in collecting such an amount even though its not their money they are handing over , it should always be a personal choice to make a donation rather than an opt out choice .

    Martyn I looked the other day at prices for the Shangri -La at the Shard , I spotted a Sunday night for the bargain 350 !!! You do get a Nespresso machine and bathrobes in the room !! I was looking to spend to get some points to gain a proper card rather than the cut out printed one as I’m newly joined and off to the Muscat Shangri La in September ( don’t want to appear to be a total tourist ) so it looks like a day out instead and a sandwich in the Deli to gain the spend !!

    Canucklad my local Chinese deliver free , and if its a decent order you get a free bottle of coke ( proper coke !! ) but I always tip the driver .


    Had a bit of a rant last week about the MacDonald Hotel in Windermere on Trip Advisor, which I copied to the hotel in another email. I highlighted a number of issues; trying to give me an inferior room to the one I paid for when I said I hadn’t stayed at the hotel before – as a Diamond with Hilton and Platinum with IHG I get what I pay for and a lot more so they were trying to pull the wool, to me that’s fraudulent; the state of the room for which I paid a princely sum; the fact that its check-in and check-out times are more akin to those of a cheap B&B in Blackpool – 1600 and 1100 but they were quite happy to give extended time in the room if you were willing to pay, £40 until 1300 and £50 until 1400, now that is a rip off. Internet was about £5 an hour.
    They won’t see me back in any of their hotels.

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