Timeshare Savings vs. Hotel Fees

No wonder people are immensely attracted to the way timeshare locks in the price of vacation and travel accommodations. For 2011, the add-on fees and surcharges billed by hotels in the United States are projected to be $1.8 billion, based on research conducted  by the Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management of New York University.

If you don’t travel regularly, then the mounting trend toward add-on hotel fees may come as a surprise to you.

Much like airlines moving toward an à la carte menu, where each additional service you use means an add-on charge to your bill, more and more hotels are charging fees for ancillary services. Most shocking, is that often guests are seeing these charges as part of their bill, even when they have not actually used the service.

What has led to these skyrocketing fees, up 80 percent in the past 10 years?

Hotels, like many other types of travel services, began to add fees to room nights after travel dipped in the months following 9-11. Then, three years ago, as the overall economy began to decline and the cost of food and many hard goods increased, adding fees became even more important for hotels, providing a way to recoup per client, some of what they were losing on the whole.

Here are some examples of the types of fees that are showing up on individual hotel bills:

  • Fee for the safe in the hotel room
  • Fee to check in early
  • Pool access fee
  • Luggage holding fee
  • Wi-Fi access fee
  • Pet fee in hotels that permit pets
  • Rollaway bed fee
  • Bellhop fee

And these costs are in addition to the mini-bar restocking fees, parking fees, local and long distance phone call fees and other services that most guests already expect to be dinged heavily for if they use.

Timeshares, Get What You Pay For

Timeshares come with their own types of fees. But these are annual maintenance fees and or property taxes, and in some cases periodic special assessments from the management or HOA. Timeshare owners know when they buy a timeshare to expect these fees and to factor them in accordingly as part of their overall cost of vacation ownership.

In addition to enjoying a timeshare resale for vacation travel as a way to avoid hotel add on fees, timeshare rentals provide you an excellent way to get what you pay for and pay for only what you get.

You won’t see mini bar fees at your timeshare. Neither will you be billed per item for many of the types of add-ons that hotel guests are seeing on their check-out folio. Instead, timeshares, particularly when bought as resales or enjoyed as a timeshare rental, make it easy for you to know and lock-in the price of your vacation accommodations, without falling victim to a fluctuating (or falling) economy.