Don't Surprise Your Guests with Resort Fees

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Resort fees never make guests happy, but property owners certainly have the right to charge them. The issue has gotten a little more complicated this week for the PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, FL.

Two New York residents, who allege they were charged daily resort fees not disclosed prior to checkout, filed a $25-million class-action lawsuit.

The complaint alleges the plaintiffs were quoted a total price when making reservations by phone, but those prices did not include the daily $25 resort fee on their bill at checkout. Similarly, the lawsuit alleges, customers making reservations online were also not shown the resort fees as part of the total price (the resort's website now lists the fees as part of the terms and conditions, but I did not check before seeing news of the suit Monday).

I'm not sure if there's any legal precedence with a case like this or if what is alleged is true, but there's a lesson to be learned for owners and operators: Make your guests aware of all charges, and as this blog has railed before, those charges better provide value or your customers may leave your property with a sour taste in their mouth no matter how great their stay was prior to checkout.

The only thing unexpected guests should find at your resort is some delight, not dismay at a disguised charge at checkout. You want them to come back, right?

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