This new hotel scam will have you seeing five stars — and it’s all legal.
Hotels across the country have been caught slapping customers with often-outrageous charges for checking in early or checking out late — a perk until only recently offered as a courtesy when available, reports the Wall Street Journal.
The latest travel travesty comes as the hospitality industry explores new ways to boost the bottom line — while quietly doing away with basic amenities like daily housekeeping.
In recent years, hotels have been found guilty of sticking up their guests with a growing number of “junk fees,” from bewildering resort charges to steep parking tabs — a trend the White House recently pledged to fight against.
President Biden announced he’s asking the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to squash the rising tide of secret add-ons that “cost Americans tens of billions of dollars.”
Meanwhile, visitors to NYC’s TWA Hotel, located at Kennedy Airport, will find themselves paying anywhere up to $150 for a late check-out.
In Beantown, the Hyatt Place Boston Seaport tacks on $50 for guests who stay past 1 p.m., with the price increasing $25 every hour through 3 p.m., according to the Journal.
“Once you start paying…it creates a precedent. It’s going to be harder to not pay it in the future,” frequent traveler and a precious-metals dealer Wei Chang told a reporter. “I always encourage people not to pay it.”
Ask those in the industry, like the vice president of San Francisco’s Hotel Nikko — which charges $50 to get into a room before 1 p.m. — and they will say you’re justly covering the “price of convenience.”
“Because we had to pay a housekeeper to get in early and get the rooms ready. We’re basically passing the cost on to the consumer,” the hotel’s VP and general manager Anna Marie Presutti said, claiming that they don’t profit off the early fees.
And apparently, loyalty doesn’t get you very much in the new rumble for a room.
Amy Franks is a Florida travel agent with has diamond status in Hilton’s loyalty program — yet she was still got the “nickel and dime” treatment at an Orlando Doubletree, which charged her $35 to check in early.
“They just gave me a cookie-cutter answer that it’s their policy,” Franks said.