U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Travel
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 12-01-2017, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Location: Happy Place
3,703 posts, read 1,884,721 times
Reputation: 11368

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
Sorry, you can probably tell from the thread title that this is a bit of a rant.

I am a college professor and I usually go to 1-2 academic conferences per year. Usually the conferences negotiate "special" rates for the conference, but for one that I'm going to in late March 2018, it's still close to $200/night after you add in the 17% tax (it's in Indianapolis, which clearly has very high hotel taxes!). The sad thing is, I am coming to realize that that is actually a GOOD price for a hotel room!! (The conference rate is $164/night, but that's a bit over $190/night with the taxes.)

Trying to save a bit of money for my employer, I looked online for hotels close to the conference hotel (which is the J. W. Marriott downtown, not to be confused with about half a dozen OTHER Marriott hotels in the vicinity). The nearest hotel was something like $159/night plus taxes, which was not enough to make me go there since the conference hotel is $164/night. But at first, on a map I saw that the Westin in Indianapolis, just a few minutes' walk from the conference hotel, was $115/night. Yippee!!, I thought. But no, that was clearly an Internet error (and a GIGANTIC one!!). When I went to the hotel's site (the CHEAPEST site for its rooms), I saw that the rooms were actually around $400/NIGHT -- for a place to SLEEP!!

Maybe I am completely naive, but I was astonished at this. I guess business travelers pay this (since their corporations are actually paying)? That's the only thing I can think of as I try to understand how anyone in their right mind would spend $400/night on a place to SLEEP. And yes, I know I keep saying that, but seriously, for me that's all a hotel room IS -- a place to sleep. OK, I might watch a bit of ESPN on TV before falling asleep (especially if my favorite team is playing), but otherwise, I will mostly be OUT of the hotel room during the day.

Am I nuts to think that I should be able to get a decent room -- I mean, seriously, a place to SLEEP -- for, say, $150/night?!!
I agree with your rant. I have been known to sleep in my car rather than pay over $100 for a hotel room.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-01-2017, 08:11 AM
 
10,847 posts, read 11,295,185 times
Reputation: 7587
Quote:
Originally Posted by finalmove View Post
A nice hotel in Seattle or Washington, DC in a downtown walkable area will cost you this. Not a shock.

.
No, it doesn't.

Next weekend, even the very upscale Sofitel costs less than $200 a night in central Washington DC. The Grand Hyatt costs less than $150.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 08:16 AM
 
Location: Raleigh
8,373 posts, read 6,209,271 times
Reputation: 11683
$400 is insane to me, at least in Indianapolis. And to be honest, I doubt people (usually) pay it. Corporations often as not have a corporate rate with Hotel chains and negotiate it ahead of time. I know I couldn't pass a $400 a night room for pre approval. That price probably reflects a busy time in the city, and the fact that since the hotel is 98% full anyway, they have no real need to lower prices and sell the rooms.

The $200 price at a downtown JW Marriott Hotel with a convention center is about right, at least in an Indianapolis type of city. When you factor in the downtown real estate, staff, service levels, etc, it adds up in a hurry.

The taxes are a separate issue. Governments love to put those taxes up since its largely borne by people that can't vote them in or out of office.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harpaint View Post
Complementary breakfast, internet access, maid service, safe and clean, secure parking, van transit to airport, prime location. You could probably find a cheap motel that had none of these, but not a hotel.
Oddly enough, the higher end the hotel is, the more likely they are to charge for everything.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harpaint View Post
I haven't had a hotel charge extra for internet in years! Even most motels have free internet now.
Again, my recent experience has been the opposite. The JW Marriots, the Westins, the Hiltons, all charge for breakfast, for internet, for (usually valet) parking, etc...Meanwhile, the Hilton Garden Inns, the Hyatt House Hotels, the Courtyards Marriots and Fairfields, Choice Hotel properties, don't charge for any of that.

As to clean, I prefer a new location in a 2 or 3 star property to an old and tired 4 or 5 star property any day of the week. Of course, new or renovated 5 star is always the best
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
7,267 posts, read 12,715,450 times
Reputation: 22129
Thanks for all the replies! I have read them all and do appreciate them, even the kinda-sorta snarky ones. (I can't complain too much, I've been known to be snarky once or twice on C-D too!)

To clarify, the JW Marriott is actually the conference hotel; the conference rate is $164/night plus 17% tax, which will mean a total of ~$192/night. On a google map, the Westin Indianapolis looked like it was nearby and it was listed at $115/night. That was clearly a gigantic mistake, as when I went to the hotel's site it came up at $400+/night. That's the one I did this to!

The problem with conferences is that they run several days (this one is Wednesday to Saturday) and you usually have to buy your plane ticket before you know when YOUR conference session is (I'm presenting a paper but don't yet know on which day). So for this conference, I have to spend 4 nights at a hotel (not my favorite thing in the world, to begin with). The idea of spending close to $2,000 (with tax) for a place to sleep for only 4 days is, indeed, mind-boggling to me (especially given that my conference funds from my employer are $1,500!).

Yes, I DO go on vacation sometimes, although I would be the first to admit I am a huge homebody. I only like traveling for pleasure when I can go somewhere for at least several weeks, which is hard to arrange unless I am on sabbatical (and that, alas, is only once every seven years). So my "vacations" are typically trips during which I stay with family or friends, so I have not had to deal with outrageously expensive hotel rooms. The conference I go to every fall is typically in small-college towns; it's usually within driving distance so there's no plane cost, and I stay only one night at a hotel that typically costs $125-150. I can deal with that.

I do want to say that I did not mean to insult anyone who routinely spends $400+ of their own money for one night in a hotel (a few of you took it that way, and I understand how you could). Obviously people have different priorities for spending their money, I get that. To ME, it's unfathomable, probably because from the inside of a hotel room I really can't tell much of a difference between a $150 room and a $400 one.

Oh, and of course I understand the law of supply and demand. What I find really odd is that a hotel like the JW Marriott is $254/night (regular price, not my conference rate) but just down the block the Westin is charging $400+. In terms of location, rooms (from photos), amenities, etc., they are not very different from each other.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JONOV View Post
... Oddly enough, the higher end the hotel is, the more likely they are to charge for everything. ... The JW Marriots, the Westins, the Hiltons, all charge for breakfast, for internet, for (usually valet) parking, etc...Meanwhile, the Hilton Garden Inns, the Hyatt House Hotels, the Courtyards Marriots and Fairfields, Choice Hotel properties, don't charge for any of that.
That's what I have noticed too in my conference travels.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JONOV View Post
As to clean, I prefer a new location in a 2 or 3 star property to an old and tired 4 or 5 star property any day of the week. Of course, new or renovated 5 star is always the best
I am actually going to Paris (again, for work) in July 2018 and will try to go to the UK for a couple of weeks before that (half for work, half for fun). I am now expecting sticker shock when I look at hotels ...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 09:10 AM
 
9,235 posts, read 9,305,514 times
Reputation: 28953
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
Sorry, you can probably tell from the thread title that this is a bit of a rant.

I am a college professor and I usually go to 1-2 academic conferences per year. Usually the conferences negotiate "special" rates for the conference, but for one that I'm going to in late March 2018, it's still close to $200/night after you add in the 17% tax (it's in Indianapolis, which clearly has very high hotel taxes!). The sad thing is, I am coming to realize that that is actually a GOOD price for a hotel room!! (The conference rate is $164/night, but that's a bit over $190/night with the taxes.)

Trying to save a bit of money for my employer, I looked online for hotels close to the conference hotel (which is the J. W. Marriott downtown, not to be confused with about half a dozen OTHER Marriott hotels in the vicinity). The nearest hotel was something like $159/night plus taxes, which was not enough to make me go there since the conference hotel is $164/night. But at first, on a map I saw that the Westin in Indianapolis, just a few minutes' walk from the conference hotel, was $115/night. Yippee!!, I thought. But no, that was clearly an Internet error (and a GIGANTIC one!!). When I went to the hotel's site (the CHEAPEST site for its rooms), I saw that the rooms were actually around $400/NIGHT -- for a place to SLEEP!!

Maybe I am completely naive, but I was astonished at this. I guess business travelers pay this (since their corporations are actually paying)? That's the only thing I can think of as I try to understand how anyone in their right mind would spend $400/night on a place to SLEEP. And yes, I know I keep saying that, but seriously, for me that's all a hotel room IS -- a place to sleep. OK, I might watch a bit of ESPN on TV before falling asleep (especially if my favorite team is playing), but otherwise, I will mostly be OUT of the hotel room during the day.

Am I nuts to think that I should be able to get a decent room -- I mean, seriously, a place to SLEEP -- for, say, $150/night?!!
Its expensive because you want a top of the line hotel. Westin, Marriott's, Hilton, Fairmont, and Sheraton are all examples of top of the line hotels.

If you want cheaper you'll have to do what the great "unwashed" in our country do and stay in hotels like Travelodge, Best Western, and--heaven forbid--Motel 6.

My wife and I travel a great deal and would never pay $150 a night unless we were in a place like New York City, London, or Paris. Sometimes a little commuting is necessary, but I refuse to be extorted by these greedy hotel chains.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 10:25 AM
 
4,430 posts, read 4,082,178 times
Reputation: 3574
Quote:
Originally Posted by karen_in_nh_2012 View Post
Sorry, you can probably tell from the thread title that this is a bit of a rant.

I am a college professor and I usually go to 1-2 academic conferences per year. Usually the conferences negotiate "special" rates for the conference, but for one that I'm going to in late March 2018, it's still close to $200/night after you add in the 17% tax (it's in Indianapolis, which clearly has very high hotel taxes!). The sad thing is, I am coming to realize that that is actually a GOOD price for a hotel room!! (The conference rate is $164/night, but that's a bit over $190/night with the taxes.)

Trying to save a bit of money for my employer, I looked online for hotels close to the conference hotel (which is the J. W. Marriott downtown, not to be confused with about half a dozen OTHER Marriott hotels in the vicinity). The nearest hotel was something like $159/night plus taxes, which was not enough to make me go there since the conference hotel is $164/night. But at first, on a map I saw that the Westin in Indianapolis, just a few minutes' walk from the conference hotel, was $115/night. Yippee!!, I thought. But no, that was clearly an Internet error (and a GIGANTIC one!!). When I went to the hotel's site (the CHEAPEST site for its rooms), I saw that the rooms were actually around $400/NIGHT -- for a place to SLEEP!!

Maybe I am completely naive, but I was astonished at this. I guess business travelers pay this (since their corporations are actually paying)? That's the only thing I can think of as I try to understand how anyone in their right mind would spend $400/night on a place to SLEEP. And yes, I know I keep saying that, but seriously, for me that's all a hotel room IS -- a place to sleep. OK, I might watch a bit of ESPN on TV before falling asleep (especially if my favorite team is playing), but otherwise, I will mostly be OUT of the hotel room during the day.

Am I nuts to think that I should be able to get a decent room -- I mean, seriously, a place to SLEEP -- for, say, $150/night?!!

I completely agree here how insane some hotels cost. There is NO cost that should be associated with a CLEAN Hotel. $69 or $499 a night should still equal clean sheets, floors, and facilities. Generally after $100 a night, it better be clean. As for safety, typically hotels in dangerous areas are like $29-59 a night, so I will pay a tad more to avoid being around prostitutes, drug dealers, or worrying about sex trafficking going on in the hotel.

What gets me is Holiday Inn, Quality inn, Best Western, Etc, can charge anywhere from $60-100 or maybe $150+ depending on where they are and still be generally nice and clean for a 2-3star, give you a free basic breakfast, free parking and fee internet and free shuttles, while people paying $2-400 a night at 4 starts have to pay for internet, breakfast, parking, and shuttles.


At the end of the day it is still a place to sleep, that thousand of others have slept and done who knows what on that same bed, but once the light turn off, ALL hotel rooms look alike. Hotels beds may be more comfy than motels, but the only way I could spend over $200 a day on a room would be for something like a anniversary trip in which I will spend alot of time in the room, but I still have yet to spend over $200 a night for a hotel and most have been very nice.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 10:39 AM
 
20,693 posts, read 16,716,499 times
Reputation: 38883
A lot of this is supply and demand, and I would guess something's going on there that period. My bf recently had to work in Hartford, CT for a couple of days, normally not an expensive city as it's not all that nice, but this time we had a very hard time getting him a room at all, and when we did it was very expensive but it turned out there was a huge marathon in Hartford during that time period.


If a hotel thinks rooms are scarce, they are going to hike prices up as high as they can.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Southern New Hampshire
7,267 posts, read 12,715,450 times
Reputation: 22129
Quote:
Originally Posted by markg91359 View Post
Its expensive because you want a top of the line hotel. Westin, Marriott's, Hilton, Fairmont, and Sheraton are all examples of top of the line hotels.

If you want cheaper you'll have to do what the great "unwashed" in our country do and stay in hotels like Travelodge, Best Western, and--heaven forbid--Motel 6.

My wife and I travel a great deal and would never pay $150 a night unless we were in a place like New York City, London, or Paris. Sometimes a little commuting is necessary, but I refuse to be extorted by these greedy hotel chains.
I would have no problem at all staying at a Travelodge or Best Western (although I try to avoid Motel 6 after a couple of bad experiences -- paper-thin walls, in particular). But whatever hotel I stay at has to be REALLY close to the conference hotel, which in this case is the JW Marriott. The cheapest I've found within easy walking distance (15-20-minute walk, maximum) is about $150/night (plus that lovely 17% tax rate!), but that is so close to the conference rate of $164/night that I might as well stay at the conference hotel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ocnjgirl View Post
A lot of this is supply and demand, and I would guess something's going on there that period. My bf recently had to work in Hartford, CT for a couple of days, normally not an expensive city as it's not all that nice, but this time we had a very hard time getting him a room at all, and when we did it was very expensive but it turned out there was a huge marathon in Hartford during that time period.

If a hotel thinks rooms are scarce, they are going to hike prices up as high as they can.
This makes a lot of sense, but typically conferences intentionally try to schedule during non-"touristy" times. I can't think why Indianapolis would suddenly become THE place to be in late March 2018!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 01:11 PM
Status: "Send HIM back- to Queens!" (set 7 days ago)
 
Location: Eureka CA
8,306 posts, read 11,153,050 times
Reputation: 12656
My cousin is a law professor who travels constantly. Her employer pays for high-end lodgings like the Langham. It's a perk of some jobs.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-01-2017, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Sector 001
7,242 posts, read 6,489,550 times
Reputation: 8297
Quote:
Originally Posted by SAAN View Post
I completely agree here how insane some hotels cost. There is NO cost that should be associated with a CLEAN Hotel. $69 or $499 a night should still equal clean sheets, floors, and facilities. Generally after $100 a night, it better be clean. As for safety, typically hotels in dangerous areas are like $29-59 a night, so I will pay a tad more to avoid being around prostitutes, drug dealers, or worrying about sex trafficking going on in the hotel.

What gets me is Holiday Inn, Quality inn, Best Western, Etc, can charge anywhere from $60-100 or maybe $150+ depending on where they are and still be generally nice and clean for a 2-3star, give you a free basic breakfast, free parking and fee internet and free shuttles, while people paying $2-400 a night at 4 starts have to pay for internet, breakfast, parking, and shuttles.


At the end of the day it is still a place to sleep, that thousand of others have slept and done who knows what on that same bed, but once the light turn off, ALL hotel rooms look alike. Hotels beds may be more comfy than motels, but the only way I could spend over $200 a day on a room would be for something like a anniversary trip in which I will spend alot of time in the room, but I still have yet to spend over $200 a night for a hotel and most have been very nice.
I just look on the review sites and pick the best rated one for the lowest price. When you're checking in at 3PM and out at 11AM and mostly just sleeping I don't really know what people really are looking for that they have to spend so much money. To each their own I guess.

If I had an employer that paid for high end lodging I'd tell the hotel that normally charges $75/night to charge me $300, keep $150 for itself, and give me $150 cash. lol

Mod cut: Orphaned (quoted post has been deleted).

Last edited by PJSaturn; 12-01-2017 at 02:41 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Travel
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top