Five Tips to Avoid Frustrating Hotel Fees

Hotels seem to have nickel-and-diming down to a science: they charge small fees here and there, eventually tacking a decent chunk of change onto your final bill. It’s no wonder — hotel guests use cell phone nows, so hotels can’t charge $1 per minute of local phone usage. The game is not to charge for anything under the sun, so beware of per-cup orange juice during your free breakfast or a towel fee for freshly laundered terry.

  • Be a smart consumer: To get ahead of the game, check third-party websites before booking: they often give a better rough total than a hotel’s website. Be particularly wary if a hotel says that additional, non-disclosed fees may be charged upon arrival or departure.
  • Cut a deal: Don’t be afraid to haggle upon check in. Ask for a flat-rate for any services you plan to use, and don’t be afraid to wave your business traveler flag (hotels want repeat business).
  • Keep on top of it: Don’t assume that anything is free – make sure to ask about fees at every point throughout your stay: at the buffet, the gym, and even when you connect your laptop to the Internet.
  • Don’t rush it: When it’s time to check out, take your time. Review your bill, and don’t hesitate to ask questions or talk with a manager over a charge dispute.
  • Remember to pay your taxes: Hotel tax can be astronomically high, so remember to mentally tack those fees onto your bill before you get sticker shock.

Creative Commons License photo credit: Daquella manera