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Priceline should cover resort fees

Priceline should cover resort fees

Old May 24, 04, 4:28 am
  #1  
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Priceline should cover resort fees

Not because of ethics, but because of business reasons. If I may have to pay additional mandatory resort fees I am really guarantted nothing. There could be a legitimate but outrageous resort fee like $100. If this is out of my budget, then I am screwed. Either pay up or waste the money I have already spent. Also since you can't specifically exclude a resort from your bid, there are no guarantees for anybody. I could bid for a two star hotel in LA and end up wit a resort with some outrageous resort fee that I can't afford.

Priceline has gone to a lot of pains to makes sure that customers can be sure of what they are getting. I can be one hundred percent sure that the hotel will fall into a particular location. Priceline has even included taxes, so that there is no uncertainty. Granted you can't be sure that a four star is really a four star but that is a matter of opinion and you can not even be sure on expedia, orbitz etc. You may know the hotel but is it really a four star like expedia says. You can at least be sure that you will have your own room and own bed.

Priceline is built on the principal that your price is guaranteed. The resort fee jsut ruins that gaurantee however. If I can only afford 100, and I'm bidding in a resort area, I can really only bid 80 even if I am well informed. A 20 resort fee is not uncommon. Now if there is a hotel willing to accept a 90 dollar bid and doesnt charge resort fee, priceline loses my business.

The solution is so simple too. Just raise the bid price needed by the resort fee and dont charge the resort fee. Priceline should enforce a policy on partner hotels that they can not charge a resort fee to priceline customers. If they want to demand a higher bid price, fine.

I'm surprised that hotels which get a lot of priceline business dont start lowering their bid prices and charge a mandatory fee. They would get a lot more bids accepted and get more business, while still getting the same rate. If resorts can charge a mandatory fee, why cant regular hotels. Hotel fee could cover elevator, lobby, pool etc.

Parking and phone charges are different because they are optional. priceline has made clear that those are not included and you either live with that or dont use priceline. If you want to say that the rate is not guaranteed either, than priceline becomes much more useless.
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Old May 24, 04, 9:26 am
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I agree 100%. Lower rated hotels are starting to add modest resort fees. NO REASON why the hotels shouldn't be required to add all mandatory extras (resort fees) to the rates they load for PL.

I'd say it's a matter of ethics and consumer protection. How can you justify saying the reservation can't be cancelled or changed because "you got the price you wanted" and then add on an extra $10-$20? When your booking conventionally the fee is disclosed and you can make a decision to book or go elsewhere. Further when you're booking conventionally the fee is a smaller % of the total price. At minimum, when your bid is accepted, you should be told of the fee and be given the oppurtunity to cancel the reservation WITHOUT ANY CHARGE OR PENALTY.

I'd say the practice borders on fraud.




Originally Posted by hindukid
Not because of ethics, but because of business reasons. If I may have to pay additional mandatory resort fees I am really guarantted nothing. There could be a legitimate but outrageous resort fee like $100. If this is out of my budget, then I am screwed. Either pay up or waste the money I have already spent. Also since you can't specifically exclude a resort from your bid, there are no guarantees for anybody. I could bid for a two star hotel in LA and end up wit a resort with some outrageous resort fee that I can't afford.

Priceline has gone to a lot of pains to makes sure that customers can be sure of what they are getting. I can be one hundred percent sure that the hotel will fall into a particular location. Priceline has even included taxes, so that there is no uncertainty. Granted you can't be sure that a four star is really a four star but that is a matter of opinion and you can not even be sure on expedia, orbitz etc. You may know the hotel but is it really a four star like expedia says. You can at least be sure that you will have your own room and own bed.

Priceline is built on the principal that your price is guaranteed. The resort fee jsut ruins that gaurantee however. If I can only afford 100, and I'm bidding in a resort area, I can really only bid 80 even if I am well informed. A 20 resort fee is not uncommon. Now if there is a hotel willing to accept a 90 dollar bid and doesnt charge resort fee, priceline loses my business.

The solution is so simple too. Just raise the bid price needed by the resort fee and dont charge the resort fee. Priceline should enforce a policy on partner hotels that they can not charge a resort fee to priceline customers. If they want to demand a higher bid price, fine.

I'm surprised that hotels which get a lot of priceline business dont start lowering their bid prices and charge a mandatory fee. They would get a lot more bids accepted and get more business, while still getting the same rate. If resorts can charge a mandatory fee, why cant regular hotels. Hotel fee could cover elevator, lobby, pool etc.

Parking and phone charges are different because they are optional. priceline has made clear that those are not included and you either live with that or dont use priceline. If you want to say that the rate is not guaranteed either, than priceline becomes much more useless.
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Old May 24, 04, 7:13 pm
  #3  
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Whenever I get hit fees that I have not agreed upon making the reservation through Priceline or any other channel that the hotel does not agree to cancel I simply dispute it with my CC company. This ensures that not only the property will be out of the questionable charge but also the dispute fee assessed by their merchant facility.
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Old May 24, 04, 7:15 pm
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I've never made a Resort booking on PL - does the screen display an explicit, eye-catching warning that resort fees may be mandatory and at additional cost?

Note: By the above question, I am asking about a warning beyond obscure text buried in the Terms and Conditions.
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Old May 24, 04, 7:21 pm
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Originally Posted by Non-NonRev
I've never made a Resort booking on PL - does the screen display an explicit, eye-catching warning that resort fees may be mandatory and at additional cost?

Note: By the above question, I am asking about a warning beyond obscure text buried in the Terms and Conditions.
Yes, they make it pretty clear. However, there is a legitimate problem here. How can anyone pre-agree to pay an unknown amount which bears no relationship to the underlying bid?
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Old May 25, 04, 7:08 am
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by Non-NonRev
I've never made a Resort booking on PL - does the screen display an explicit, eye-catching warning that resort fees may be mandatory and at additional cost?

Note: By the above question, I am asking about a warning beyond obscure text buried in the Terms and Conditions.
Somewhere in between but resort fees ARE NOT LIMITED TO RESORTS. Some lower rated properties are charging resort fees. Other add ons are either optional (room service,parking) or definite for the zone (local occupancy tax). When you're bidding for a resort in Disney you don't know if you'll be paying your bid (no resort fee) or $10 (or possibly more) extra for a resort fee.

Not really fair or ethical to ask a customer to agree to an unknown, undetermined add on charge to a bid that can't be changed or cancelled. PL will lose this one as soon as a consumers affair group or state decides to go after them. Make the hotel add it to the rate loaded into the system, make PL adjust your bid price or at least tell the bidder that we got your price but there is an extra fee do you still want the room.

Last edited by lewisc; May 25, 04 at 8:44 am
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Old May 25, 04, 8:16 am
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The bigger picture is that hotels have instituted 'resort fees' as a way to boost rates while making them appear to be the same.

I'd favor a law that requires any mandatory fee be included in the rate (Priceline or not). Optional fees (parking, phone calls, etc) should remain the way they are, but if there is no way to stay in the room and avoid the fee, it should have to be included in the rate.
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Old May 25, 04, 8:48 am
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Originally Posted by thereuare
The bigger picture is that hotels have instituted 'resort fees' as a way to boost rates while making them appear to be the same.

I'd favor a law that requires any mandatory fee be included in the rate (Priceline or not). Optional fees (parking, phone calls, etc) should remain the way they are, but if there is no way to stay in the room and avoid the fee, it should have to be included in the rate.
ITA but at least with a conventional reservation you know about the fee before your'e committed to the room. I suspect resort fees are is a way to make the rates look better in search engines as well as a way to reduce the comissons paid.

Some properties at least try to give you something extra for the fee (internet access, coffee, bottled water, fitness center).
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Old May 25, 04, 8:55 am
  #9  
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Originally Posted by holtju2
Whenever I get hit fees that I have not agreed upon making the reservation through Priceline or any other channel that the hotel does not agree to cancel I simply dispute it with my CC company. This ensures that not only the property will be out of the questionable charge but also the dispute fee assessed by their merchant facility.
What has your success rate been with this?
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Old May 25, 04, 9:51 am
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I emailed priceline a copy of my original post, and got back a pretty much canned response. Its like they dont even understand the logic of my complaint.




Thank you for taking the time to send us an e-mail. We understand that
you are not happy with the resort fees for your hotel reservation.

Parking, resort fees, phone calls, hotel occupancy taxes, etc. incurred
during your stay are the responsibility of the guest. Properties that
offer extensive amenities, such as pools, spas, tennis courts, golf, and
water activities, will sometimes charge a resort fee for the use of
these items. Resorts may not include these additional fees in the price
of the room, in which case these charges are payable upon check-out.

Resort fees are the same as would apply if you reserved your reservation
through a travel agent or directly from the hotel. Resort fees are not
unique to our customers. We do not have the ability to determine the
resort fees in advance and recommend that you contact the resort
directly for more information regarding these charges.

Mr. XXXXXX, based on the information provided in your e-mail, we were
unable to determine the request which your are referring to. In order
for us to better assist you, please respond to this e-mail with a
detailed description of your issue. Remember to include your Priceline
Request Number and any other information that you feel is relevant.

We await the opportunity to assist you.

Sincerely,

Tapan T.
Customer Service Specialist
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Old May 25, 04, 4:35 pm
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Originally Posted by Analise
What has your success rate been with this?
Have done it several times. Call your CC issuer and give them the NOT AUTHORIZED-speak and the amount that you are disputing.
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Old May 26, 04, 8:46 am
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A poster on BFT mentioned getting hit with a $30/day resort/service charge on a resort in AZ. His Hotwire price was just over $100.
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Old May 26, 04, 10:40 am
  #13  
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Originally Posted by holtju2
Have done it several times. Call your CC issuer and give them the NOT AUTHORIZED-speak and the amount that you are disputing.
And every time you've challenged the resort fee, your cc issuer eliminated the charges?
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Old May 26, 04, 11:26 am
  #14  
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I actually wish they would just create a "resort" category... and if you put that in your bidding you know you will be subject to more fees at the resort's discretion.

Leave the star designation categories to hotel that you know what you bid is what you pay.

I am also amazed that the credit card companies would just remove the charges.... because we do agree to it when bidding... even though we do not know how much... of course, that may be why they remove it.

I wonder... if it is removed... who pays? Does the resort lose out? or do they go back to Priceline? I am guessing the former.

William
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Old May 26, 04, 12:31 pm
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Originally Posted by wharvey
I actually wish they would just create a "resort" category... and if you put that in your bidding you know you will be subject to more fees at the resort's discretion.

Leave the star designation categories to hotel that you know what you bid is what you pay.

I am also amazed that the credit card companies would just remove the charges.... because we do agree to it when bidding... even though we do not know how much... of course, that may be why they remove it.

I wonder... if it is removed... who pays? Does the resort lose out? or do they go back to Priceline? I am guessing the former.

William
Except some of the hotels that are charging "resort fees" aren't resorts. Some of the 2.5* properties in Orlando. Some resorts in a zone charge fees and some don't.

The fee should be added to the hotel rate. How can you agree to pay an unknown amount?

The credit card dispute would be on the charge for the resort fee. The hotel would lose out. I suspect some resorts decide it's not worth the expense to fight the dispute.

How high does the resort fee have to be before it borders on fraud? How about $30 on a $105 rate? Certainly you're price wasn't met if you have to pay an extra 30% when you check in.
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