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28 thoughts on “$65/Night Hawaii Resort Fees Persist But President Says Stop”

  1. I agree this is an egregious practice. These affect all travelers, tourists and kama’aina alike. Hotels need to be required to show these fees as part of the per night total and not some fine print somewhere right before you click on payment. However, we are not the sole place doing this. I just stayed in a hotel in Scottsdale that charged $35 a night for one and they had nothing to show for it, and that was the same as last year in Palm Springs.

    Better yet, eliminate them. But then they will raise the room rates to reflect them. But that is better than trying to hide them from the consumer. It will help consumers make better choices, and perhaps give a leg up to those who choose not to charge for these things.

  2. BOH mentions vacation rentals but they have many additional fees as well. Looked at a VRBO rental on Kaanapali Beach tonight and this was the recap.

    7 nights – $3493
    Admin fee 282
    Management 94
    Cleaning 257
    Service(VRBO)473
    Taxes 608
    Grand Total 5207

    $1714 in fees. Almost 50% of listed rental price

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    1. The same thing was true when I was searching for nice places to stay in AZ. It’s not just HI. And some of the fees, like cleaning fees, are legit. I mean, I don’t want a unit that was not cleaned between the person before me and me. But many of these things are just like Ticketmaster fees…covering nothing of value and sticking it to the person buying.

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  3. Travel fees will be here forever. Airlines are depending on them, now so do hotels in resort areas like Hawaii, Vegas, and even Reno and Dallas. As the hotel and airline industry consolidate, we will get these olygopolies that can set these charges, which are part of the travel traps. Condos have cleaning charges and other fees as well. What has desensitized travelers is the state and county taxes around 25 percent. So the hotel chains are getting in on the grift. The fees allow the price to be lower which gives the traveler a sense of getting a deal. And the hotel industry can say that consolidation is good because it keeps prices lower. And yet the travelers pay it because everyone is in on it.

  4. I object to resort fees. If you stay for one night (as a rest stop on a travel elsewhere), you will be charged a resort fee. I think you should be given the option, if you’re not going to use the resort amenities (pool, gym, whatever) don’t pay for it.

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  5. This fee charge must be somewhat a new thing. I do not remember too much about it on previous trips. In any case it does seem to be a money grab. Yes, any money adds to the bottom line. Get that, but openness on what you are going to be paying should be reflected in the room rate quoted. Hotel can’t make ends meet; seems that would be a business thing to deal with; up the rates or make it better on the running of the hotel.

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  6. Having to pay $40+ dollars a night so I can get a free USA Today, free local calls, two bottles of water and access to a “gym” with a broken treadmill and 6 mismatched dumbbells is absolutely insane.

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  7. I hope the hospitality industry in Hawai’i pays heed to your thoughts on fees. Once again, my wife and I recently started the process to spend some time in the islands. Airfare from Orlando, where we reside, was reasonable. However, we were unable to find a reasonably priced hotel without resort fees and excessive parking fees. We even offered to spend a daily amount on meals at the resort restaurants equal to the resort fees and parking…there were no takers. Hawaii hospitality should study was is transpiring with Disney…an ousted CEO that had a history of price increases that priced out guests. Disney recently dropped daily parking fees; there were no Resort fees.

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  8. Condos, timeshares, etc. also charge a resort fee. There is no frequent guest program you can belong to as there is with hotels. The price of condos has skyrocketed in 2021, 2022, and 2023 and for 2024. Each year they increase substantially. Isn’t increased rent enough to satisfy the owners and the State?

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  9. Bait and switch is an apt descriptor for “resort fees”; another is “rip off”. There are very few hotels in Honolulu and Las Vegas that don’t charge such fees and they get my business.

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  10. Resort fees are common in other states. There is no bate and switch, the charges are provided when you book your trip, and you make a choice.
    Why should resorts in hawaii worry about what the president says unless he will somehow end all resort fees everywhere.

    1. It is in my opinion “bait and switch” because advertisers entice potential customers by posting room rates which are in many cases much less than the price they will actually pay when the “resort fee” is added.

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  11. Resort fees should be listed “up front.” As far as abolishing them outright – that will change nothing, because the hotels will simply increase their rates to make up for it. One way or another the consumer will pay.

    Think that Hawaiian hotels are ripping you off? Don’t blame Hawaii – blame the multinational corporations: Hyatt, Four Seasons, Hilton, Sheraton, Waldorf Astoria (owns the Grand Wailea Resort on Maui), Seibu Railaway Japan (owns Prince Resorts), et al – call them and complain. As long as travelers are willing to pay high rates, the hotels will charge them. And with the predicted resurgence of the affluent Japanese tourist yet to come, it’s going to get worse, not better. Isn’t Capitalisms fun?

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    1. Eldo, not calling for them to be abolished. Just be straight with your customers. If the room rate is actually $200, advertise it as 200,
      Not 150 and a 50 dollar resort fee.

      And, never call a plain jane hotel a resort.

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      1. I would never decide to book a hotel without going through to the final cost page. Isn’t the fee always listed somewhere on that page?

  12. Resort fees should be banned unless the property has these 4 extras: a 24 hour on property restaurant, a gym that comfortably accommodates at least,say, 3 % of guests throughout the early hours until late night, a swimming pool and an on property golf course.The course can be shared with an adjacent hotel. Without those 4 amenities, it’s a hotel, not a resort.

    My opinion they the charge resort fees so they can advertise lower prices and the get to save on commissions they pay to travel sites and agents.

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  13. I guess I need to give kudos to Marriott/ Bonvoy because on their website, if you look up to the upper portion of the search page, you can click a box that says ‘show me the price with all taxes and fees’ and snap, total price is right there! I enjoy that feature and is one of the many reasons i am loyal brand fan, no hidden fees or unexpected costs.

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    1. Not so fast on those kudos @yachtscott… Marriott only displays the pricing that way because they had to agree to it as part of a settlement from a lawsuit brought by the Pennsylvania Attorney General:

      forbes.com/sites/suzannerowankelleher/2021/11/22/marriott-disclose-resort-fees/?sh=1ee4415f33b7

      Transparency under duress is more like it.

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      1. Thanks for that update @autoslash. Thank you to the PA AG as well as i hope they make all websites have that feature! Still a Bonvoy fan even though they were forced into what is a common sense way to do business. i really don’t care what makes up my bottom line stay cost, just that i know going in to it what the $ will be.

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  14. The American Hotel and Lodging Association needs to get out a bit. We are lucky to be Marriott Titanium for Life because when we stayed (on points) two weeks ago at the Maui Sheraton, we would have paid $42.67/night resort fee AND $46/night parking fee. Instead, we only had to pay the resort fee. (Think about visiting Maui and not having a car to park.)

  15. Thanks for the article guys. The American Hotel and Lodging Association hit back, however, saying that 94% of hotels charge no resort. When they do, “it includes unique and tangible amenities such as food and beverage credits, special events, access to pools and beaches, transportation and spa services.” Ha! I’ve never stayed at or found a hotel that includes any of these things. And I can go to the beach for free… at least until visitors are charged fees to come to Hawaii.

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  16. Back in the day access to a pool/beach was a given, no resort or hotel fee charged to cover such access. I first noticed those fees a couple of years ago when arranging hotel stays in Las Vegas for attorneys I worked with. I thought it was outrageous, and so did the attorneys.

  17. Aloha – find a nice t/share to rent and stay in…yes, there will be taxes and fees, but not to the hotel extent of them…just the mandated State basics…which have also increased and will likely again as a tax grab. But what can you do – not ‘play’ and go elsewhere.

  18. I just got back from Hawaii. The “Resort Fees” feel sleazy, because they are. You are fooling no one. “Bait and Switch” is an illegal trade practice and originated…..guess where? From the Mobsters in Las Vegas. Charge what you want, but please don’t try to “trick me”.

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