Hawaii Hotel Resort Fees

$65/Night Hawaii Resort Fees Persist But President Says Stop

Resort fees are back in the news today, and Hawaii has some of the most eye-popping ones as far as we know. Yesterday, President Joe Biden attacked egregious hotel resort fees and called on Congress to limit some of these fees being levied on consumers.

These add up to unfair fees… when you check out, it can be over $50 a night. — President Joe Biden.

This subject has been dragging on for a very long time. More than five years ago, the FTC said that “Separating mandatory resort fees from posted room rates without first disclosing the total price is likely to harm consumers.” Yet it continues widely to this day. Resort fees force consumers into making “An incomplete, less informed decision that may result in a more costly room, ” added FTC.

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.”

It seems that Hawaii may have more than its fair share of hotel resort fees, and we simply fail to find the value in them. Read on for why these fees exist in the first place; it’s interesting.

InsultingHawaii Resort Fees Up To $65/Night.

Some of the highest Hawaii resort fees we found on checking today include the following. Below see the hotels with the highest percentage of total fees and taxes:

  1. Alohilani Resort $48/night.
  2. Andaz Maui $50/night.
  3. Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel $39/night.
  4. Aston Waikiki Beach Tower $45/night.
  5. Fairmont Orchid $42/night.
  6. Grand Hyatt Kauai $45/night.
  7. Grand Wailea Resort $50/night.
  8. Hilton Hawaiian Village $50/night. As an aside, also expect to pay $58-$68 for parking.
  9. Hotel Wailea $40/night.
  10. Hyatt Regency Waikiki $42/night.
  11. Koa Kea Resort $45/night.
  12. Mauna Lani Resort $45/night.
  13. Modern Honolulu $35/night
  14. Montage Kapalua Bay $65/night.
  15. Prince Hotel Waikiki $39/night.
  16. Royal Hawaiian $42/night.

Resort fees, together with taxes, can still add up to 50% to your bill.

Not only that, but some resort fees are very easy to find just by searching. Others are hidden away and can only be found when attempting to make a booking.

It’s interesting, too, that even some very high-end Hawaii hotels are no longer sharing resort fees. At the same time, others try to wrap resort fees together with parking fees and even allegedly with a car rental upgrade or discount, soft drinks, or other obscure and unnecessary things.

Some of the highest total fees and taxes when we last checked were at Prince Waikiki (48%), Outrigger Waikiki Beach (46%), and Laylow Autograph Collection (50%). Read the entire Hawaii resort fee and taxes article. Obviously, the higher the price of the hotel, the less percentage impact resort fees will have.

Why do Hawaii hotels charge resort fees?

It comes down to bait-and-switch to some degree. By hiding some of the costs until later in the visitor’s search process, it can frequently give the impression that the total cost is much less than it really is. It’s the same as airlines and their basic economy offerings.

Not only that, but Hawaii hotels don’t pay commissions to travel agencies on resort fees. So moving some of the money there helps their bottom line.

Avoiding Hawaii resort fees.

  • Check different rate codes and see if you can find one without a resort fee. You can also call the property and ask for suggestions.
  • Some hotels waive resort fees on award-type bookings.
  • The hotel’s branded credit card, or a travel-focused premium credit card can be another way to mitigate these fees.
  • Join the hotel’s frequent guest program and see if that reduces your resort fees.
  • Consider vacation rentals because often there is no resort fee, even at condo resorts (but they do have other fees to be aware of).

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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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?

    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.

      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?

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

    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:


      Transparency under duress is more like it.

      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.

  6. 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.)

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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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