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FTC Urges Hotels to Reveal All Fees at Time of Reservation

Discussion in 'Misc. Vegas Chat' started by SH0CK, Dec 3, 2012.

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  1. SH0CK

    SH0CK Stylin' and Profilin' Quasi Tech Admin

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    I wonder how many Vegas hotels received the warning letters...
    Let's keep politics out of this folks...
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2012
  2. mrstealth

    mrstealth High-Roller

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    Most vegas hotels already do this anyway, in fact, most will make you click a box indicating that you have read and accept the fees prior to making the reservation.

    The problem is many people use 3rd party booking services to try and save money, and those sites don't always disclose all of the fee's (all they want to do is get the booking), and then when the customer goes to check in they find out the bad news.
     
  3. MikeOPensacola

    MikeOPensacola VIP Whale

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    Good policy.....This would have saved that Huffington Post idiot a lot of grief and a ton of national embarrassment.:peace:
     
    Annual Summer Bliss in the Land of Milk and Honey!!!
  4. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    The intention of the separate resort fee is either price deception or tax evasion. Even if it is disclosed, its not included in the total you see when you book the room and make your first nights deposit.

    It's a scam. Pure and simple.
     
  5. numeno

    numeno VIP Whale

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    Unless something has changed in the last month or so, every MGM property still did not show the resort fee within the price when I did a search. Yes, it was explained later on and I had to agree to it. This is the definition of "drip pricing". They do not show you the total cost up front, but instead show you partial and then after some clicks show you the rest.


    Maybe Wynn/V/P do this already. I don't stay there so I just don't know. In the mailers I get from Wynn, the price certainly doesn't include the resort fee.
     
  6. Sonya

    Sonya Queen of VMB

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    Please remember the rule on VMB about politics. There is to be no political discussion... period.

    This subject is on topic if it stays about Resort Fees. It can be discussed without getting into the political side of it. The discussion is about the legality of the fees/pricing, not whether or not the government should/shouldn't have the ability to get involved.

    Further political commentary in this thread will be deleted and infractions handed out. If you see political posts in this thread, please use the report post icon to report it to the moderators. The icon is in the upper right corner of every post and looks like this. [​IMG]

    I've said all along that the practice of resort fees just feels slimy to me. I'd love to see the practice end. If the room is $125, just tell me that. Don't advertise that it's $100 and then tell me in the fine print that it isn't really that price.

    I'm interested to see how this progresses.
     
  7. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    Clicking a box is not enough for the FTC. They want you to see a total with all the fees and associated taxes included.
     
  8. SH0CK

    SH0CK Stylin' and Profilin' Quasi Tech Admin

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    This actually reminds me of the stipulations imposed on the airlines to show all of the fees associated with their flights. It shouldn't come down to this, but, if forcing the hotels be more upfront about the total costs, I'm all for this.
     
  9. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Not sure about the legality angle. Is it any different than the same consumer product selling at wildly varying prices depending on where/when the item is purchased or the buyer's buying savvy?

    The problem is clearly with third-party services. I've been pricing TI and MGM Grand (and others) the past month--and hotels in other markets--and through the hotels' websites still don't list the fee in the tally, I'm verily hit in the face with the disclosure. Now Hotels.com , for one, only notes it as one of many line items in the disclosures several steps in. If consumers are aided if there is one tally, then why not? For me, personally, my other travel-active friends and family, it's still a non-issue.
     
  10. numeno

    numeno VIP Whale

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    The FTC doesn't actually care if the prices vary wildly. Charging $500 for something isn't against the law. The market will decide if that is good. The FTC only jumps in when monopolies happen.

    Walmart would have the same issue if I went and bought a can of soup where the label said $1.29, but then it ended up being $1.59 at the register because of a soup can fee that wasn't stated initially. The consumer has a right to know the price of something when they are buying it and not 5 steps after they have decided to purchase it.


    For those that know about resort fees, this isn't a huge issue. People may be annoyed, but I just look at every MGM mailer I get and tack on $20/night to every price. This practice is deceptive to the consumer though, which is anti-consumer. This is exactly what the law is trying to avoid(anti-consumer behavior).



    I know why MGM tells me a room is $49/night when it really isn't, but that doesn't make it legal. :)
     
  11. leo21

    leo21 VIP Whale

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    From the FTC's perspective, since these are mandatory fees, you should get a final total with all the costs and taxes associated with renting the room. Just like when you buy a widget on Amazon, you will ultimately get a total with all your tax and shipping before you finalize the deal. The concern is both about people being surprised but also the unfair advantage fee hotels are getting on third party searches. If these were optional services, the way they are doing the reservations are fine.
     
  12. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    most importantly, do I have to pay the fee on my Cosmo reservation I made for May 30-June 2 if I made this reservation before the fees were disclosed? I reserved in early September (yeah I like to plan ahead :evillaugh)
     
  13. pebbles

    pebbles VIP Whale

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    Back when the resort fees were a nasty rumour, I booked an MGM property several months ahead without any mention of resort fees. On checking in, I was supposed to sign to acknowledge payment of the extra fees. I showed my original reservation that didn't mention the resort fee, and was exempted from paying it.
     
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  14. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    I still have yet to actually end up being billed a resort fee. lol.

    The one thing it always reminds me of was in the early '90's when they had those billboards advertising Excalibur/Circus Circus for $15. We were sharing a room with another couple and someone came around knocking on doors and offered a second room for $5. We took that so we could take advantage of the "privacy" with the girlfriends of the time. Our daily budgets for gambling were $20-$40.

    Now that $5 we paid for the room is the tax on the hidden fee.

    My how times change.

    Back then we thought Vegas was about the greatest thing in the World. That feeling even held through 2001 when I did a 3-night trip in one of Luxor's corner Jacuzzi suites over a weekend for $750 all in for 2 people WITH flights.

    It was cheesy, cheap, and fun.

    The service was great. I ate 3 chicken fried steaks in 24 hours and never spent over $5. (except maybe on toilet paper :evillaugh).

    I busted out early downtown one night and only saved $20 but remember i was able to pound 8 Heinekein Dark's on that cash that night before falling asleep for the night in a pool chair at my buddies aunts house.

    Don't get me wrong, I love the luxury stuff, but it just feels so corporate, scuzzy, and disingenuous now.

    I guess Cosmo adding a $25+ tax per night resort fee is just another thing in the long litany of lameness.
     
  15. Sonya

    Sonya Queen of VMB

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    BeeeJay, when I talked to Comso, they said that reservations made after 12/6/2012 for hotel arrivals after 1/1/2013 will be charged the fee, but other reservations won't.
     
  16. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    :woohoo:

    very nice, i figured they wouldn't stoop that low :beer:
     
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