I'd like to gather opinion on this one - is it fair that my regular rate is hiked up 3-4 times for the 4 weeks of the Olympic games?
I stay at a London Marriott hotel for probably 45 weeks of the year, and have done for a number of years. I cannot afford to pay this rate for work purposes, so I will have to stay somewhere else. Is it right for Marriott to cash in on events like this at the expense of regular and loyal customers?
Apparently as a Platinum Premier member I have "guaranteed availability", which is fine, as long as I am willing to pay an exorbitant rate.
Is it right, no...Is it fair, no...does it happen throughout the hotel industry, yes.....Jacking up prices to exorbitant levels has become the norm for high demand special events. No matter how you look at it...it is price gauging. I realize that hotels can charge whatever they like and can get away with, but I'm sure they could still make a hefty profit with a more moderate policy for pricing. Where the fairness band comes in ends up in the eye of the beholder.
It's called supply & demand. All hotel chains do it during 'special events'. Not fun, but that's the way it is. Having said that, I've heard some of the chains are starting to open up inventory. So the OP might want to book the alternate hotel & then keep checking back on his/her preferred hotel up until the day before his/her stay to see if the rates drop.
Are the hotels also asking for the reservation to be pre-paid? I know every year when I go to Indianapolis and when I have gone to the Super Bowl they always ask for a pre-pay....and the rates are seriously jacked......but, depending on the hotel, they don't always bring the rate down when bookings aren't 'full'. But, some properties do bring rates down for unfilled rooms as the date for the event gets closer. I agree, it's not fair...but it is what it is.
Having just left London I too was shocked at the excessive prices of everything! The American dollar doesn't have a very good exchange rate with the BPS, so even doing self-service laundy nearby cost over $70 USD. As with any trip out of the USA, I've learned to pay the price and ignore the real cost in USD, or it will drive me crazy.
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