Expedia, to its credit, will begin penalizing hotels with hidden resort fees by ranking them lower in search results. That may help in some cities, but what about Las Vegas, where every hotel tacks on these bogus fees?
I just took a look at hotel listings for tonight in Las Vegas. Take a look:
The Cosmopolitan is on top. No doubt, they paid for that preferential listing. $239/night.
Click through, and you’ll note the resort fee of $44:
The same is true for every other hotel…
Consumers + OTAs Should Insisit On All-In Pricing
It is not just in the interest of consumers to display all-in pricing. Expedia or any other online travel agency stands to benefit as well because it can take a commission on the entire amount. When the resort fee is added at check-in or check-out, Expedia misses out on collecting that.
I’ve written about resort fees on several occasions in the past. In places like Las Vegas, resort fees can sometimes more than double the price of a hotel. I think this is bait-and-switch and grounds for government intervention, but government intervention is not necessary if online travel agencies would insist themselves upon all-in pricing. I also think we need a blanket, not piecemeal solution, if our goal is truly to let consumers make informed choices.
The changes Expedia has promised are better than nothing. That said, to truly make an impact, all-in prices should be clearly listed on the first screen. That is the only acceptable solution to the growing scam of hidden resort fees.
(H/T: View from the Wing)