Hotel tries to levy a $500 fee because the guest is American

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I just read on Chris Elliott about a guy who was charged an extra $500 on an online travel-booking site because of his nationality. From the post:

“There are a number of resorts/hotels that have different rates and conditions according to the guest’s nationality,” Otel.com explained in a note. “In some cases the rates on our website at these particular resorts/hotels will not be applicable for the US market.”

A $1,200 fee for being American? Seriously?

Or was it a simple rate error? We don't know. What we do know is that hotel fees are not going away any time soon—they're just too profitable. In fact, U.S. hotels collected $1.85 billion in fees last year, and the trend is ever moving upward, according to this article on HotelNewsNow. What will they think of to slap a surcharge on next?

Do you think these fees are OK as long as they're for something that has value to you and are made clear up front? As a planner, how successful are you at getting them waived for your attendees?

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