25 Replies Latest reply: Sep 29, 2009 1:50 AM by tjcnewyork RSS

Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays

yardape Platinum 1 Reviews
Currently Being Moderated
$10+ a day for broadband when I can connect my laptop to my Blackberry and get decent access speeds? Come on Marriott are you really making money from this? Internet access is a utility... like water and power. Oh yeah it includes free long distance... so does my Blackberry...
  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    My thoughts exactly.   The business case for paid broadband/wifi requires rethinking.  Rather than charging the guest, transition to an advertising supported service where local business services and merchants including restaurants, nightclubs, sightseeing attractions, movies and entertainment pay to be on the hotel portal/landing page. 

     

    At present, Marriott Concierge, the Front Desk or the Lobby is where one would go to pick up maps, brochures and marketing collateral. It's not very 'green'.  All of that information could be in PDF files, managed centrally and printed on demand.  Better yet - send it to my Blackberry. 

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    Alumni Steward Platinum 8 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated
    Why not eliminate the daily newspapers that are at our door each morning? That has to cost thousands per month per hotel and actually gets stepped on more than read.  Doing this would allow some flexibility in the Internet.  Charge others (non-Platinums) for the Internet if you must but free for us.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    gheuer Gold
    Currently Being Moderated
    Yep, the main people at the fine Marriott properties are those of us who must travel for business. Virtually all fine hotels in Canada offer high speed internet as part of the room fee. Extra charges for internet connection just make Marriott look like money grubbers. This is particularly true when the connection is free and fast in Courtyard and Fairfield properties. Do away with daily charges for internet or we will all bring our own connections, on way or another.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    jerrycoin Alumni Steward Platinum 60 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    This is really a disappointing problem, both domestically and internationally. It would help if you could work or stay in touch with your family at expensive properties free, like you can at other much cheaper hotels.

    It is no fun having to "Buy" time on something that you can get free from the competitive hotel "Free", nest door. 

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    gladbach Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated
    $17+ per day in NYC at Hotel 57....out of principle I refuse to pay that.  Cmon Marriott for platinum elite just give us the access code for free!!!  At minimum, give me an option of breakfast or internet (see Hilton)...they let you choose which would benefit you more.  There is nothing that ruins my stay more than having to pay for internet service (its 2009)...this archaic policy alone has forced me to stay in much "cheaper" competitors and cost you thousands in revenue....going back to NYC for a 2 week stay and not paying $200 a night to still have to pay $17 a night in internet charges....think about this your losing 2k+ in revenue b/c you won't treat your most loyal guests with a little common business sense.  PLEASE CHANGE THIS RULE!!!  I already stay 100+ nights easily, but it could be many more and I have numerous colleagues that also factor these low blow internet charges into their decision on where to stay.  Just a thought.....

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    jerrycoin Alumni Steward Platinum 60 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    Gladbach, YardApe, and others,

    Hope someone will listen to you!

    There is a lot of business being lost because of this "Tax"!

    on doing business while traveling.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    eeclapp Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated
    I had stayed at a Residence Inn for 4 months of Mon-Thurs without paying a dime for the Internet.  We switched to another project and now I am staying at a full-service Marriott which was $9.95 per day for Internet.  I called the front desk my first night there and they gave me my Internet for the week for free.  We contacted our Marriott person about our future stays and although they couldn't give us free Internet, they we able to lower it for us to $4.95 per day.  We did book a lot of weeks at this specific property, but it never hurts to ask what they can do for you!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Broadband/Wifi is now ubiquitous that it's possible to find a hot spot and access the Internet FREE from a number of places, even in Marriott guest rooms that charge for the service.  It's quite amazing as problems are rarely encountered.  

     

    On Florida's Suncoast, the Renaissance Vinoy in St. Petersburg charges $14.95 per 24 hour period for Wifi access. But there were not less than 5 wireless networks to choose from for Free. 

     

    At the Residence Inn Treasure Island, it's $9.95 per 24 hour period, yet 3 wireless networks were available for Free.

     

    Broadband/Wifi is now part of the communications and information infrastructure. Imposing an access fee is like charging a guest for hot water.  

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    Alumni Steward Platinum 8 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated
    RIs are supposed to offer internet for no charge. It is not good to hear that at least one of them (Tresaure Island FL) is charging. Using any public hotspot invites identity theft, and Marriott might also consider offfering secure wired access in all room for free.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Stepping:

     

    Thanks for pointing out that RIs should provide free Internet access.  I wasnt going to make it an issue for $9.95 on a perfect vacation experience - especially since there were 3 free networks available to choose from.

     

    Identity Theft is a threat on both free (unencrypted) and paid (encrypted) wired or wireless networks.  To minimize this threat, the individual PC device accessing a network must be protected with a Firewall to prevent unwanted intrusion.  The other aspect is user  behavior which is typically covered under the Terms & Conditions the user Accepts (or Not) upon accessing the paid or free network.  Certain behaviors and conditions will make hacking a vulnerable PC with the intent to breach easy.

     

    To your point, however, MarriottRewards.com is secured (https) versus MarriottRewardsInsiders (http). It doesn't matter if one accesses either of these websites from a free or paid network, what does matter is the reliability of the Firewall setup to prevent intrusion.

     

    Hope this helps.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    superchief1 Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated
    I think it is interesting that Hyatt is now offering elite members free internet, and the new Starwood Aloft Hotel chain offers complimentary internet as well as free beverages and snacks in rooms. I hope Marriott is paying attention.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    akashawnthomas Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated
    Yes, Marriott makes money. But it costs alot of money to have that service at hotels, much more than you might think. I am a Plaitunum member, but also a vendor to hotels. As a road warrior, I use my BB as a modem as well and use the Internet connection at hotels that offer it for free. There are plenty that do. So you, as a consumer, have a choice to stay at hotels that provide for free, and many Marriott hotels do.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    akashawnthomas:

     

    "But it costs alot of money to have that service at hotels, much more than you might think."

     

    Thanks for the commentary.  Your statement begs the question,  "How much does Broadband/Wifi implementation cost?"  As a baseline, I turned to the Marriott Vacation Club brand.  Throughout the US, free Broadband/Wifi access is the MVCI brand standard. 

     

    In order to implement free Wifi, the cost is minimal.  Since owners purchase Marriott timeshare in increments of a week, the total cost for Wifi for a week appears as a line item, High Speed Internet on the Maintenance Fee (MF) budget. Here are some examples:

     

    • At Newport Coast Villas, CA the MF budgeted $2.99 in 2008 and $2.90 in 2009 or a 3.0% decrease.
    • At Horizons in Bramson, MO the MF budgeted $3.96 in 2008 and $4.08 in 2009 or a 3.0% increase.  
    • At Custom House, Boston, MA the MF budgeted $1.51 in 2008 and $1.43 in 2009 or a 5.3% decrease. 
    • At Beachplace Towers, Fort Lauderdale, FL the MF budgeted $2.78 in 2008 and $3.02 in 2009 or a 8.6% increase.
    • At Fairway Villas, Galloway, NJ the MF budgeted $2.78 in 2008 and $2.81 in 2009 or a 1.1% increase.
    • At Grande Chateau, Las Vegas, NV the MF budgeted $3.20 in 2008 and $3.08 in 2009 or a 3.8% decrease.

     

    With the average cost to implement and maintain FREE Broadband/Wifi hovering around $3/WEEK for 1, 2 and 3 bedroom villas, help us figure out how Marriott comes up with $12 to $16 per 24 HOURS for Wifi in a standard room in a full service hotel? 

     

    In the timeshare model, MF are paid annually in January so there may be a significant discount passed on to timeshare owners.  But, forking over $84 to $112 plus tax for a week of WiFi services at a Category 6 hotel makes the commercial side of the business highly suspect when setting standards for loyal business travellers as well as obtaining value from volume contracts with Broadband vendors.  As a vendor, how do you account for such a huge difference?

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Superchief

     

    "I think it is interesting that Hyatt is now offering elite members free internet, and the new Starwood Aloft Hotel chain offers complimentary internet as well as free beverages and snacks in rooms. I hope Marriott is paying attention."

     

    As a multiple week owner of MVCI resorts, I'm certain you've seen the Maintenance Fee statements which itemize the weekly cost of High Speed Internet.   As owners, we pay upfront to enjoy free broadband service and have that expectation at every resort  in the system. Now that many MVCI resorts are classified as Category 6*, I thought it worthwhile to look at the baseline for broadband/Wifi and compare costs to the commercial side.

     

    In my post to akashawnthomas, the baseline cost to provide Free Broadband/Wifi averages around $3 plus or minus per week per villa irrespective of number of bedrooms.  Although I did a rough sampling, I found it interesting that the lowest cost per week is the Custom House in Boston at less than $2 per week!

     

    Marriott Vacation Club has been offering Free Wifi since 2006. There is no need for Marriott to look at Hyatt or Starwood IMHO, free Broadband/Wifi is just another area where Marriott can tighten up Brand Integration.

     

     

    * See

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Marriott's Wentworth by the Sea is a Category 6 Resort & Spa.  Unlike other Category 6 hotels, Wentworth provides FREE Broadband internet access. No joking here.  According to the front desk, every room/suite has a desk and is equipped with a standard RJ45 ethernet cable.  They'll even bring you a new cable if it's missing or broken. Plug-in, open a browser and login via a branded portal. 

     

    Here's a few examples of the user interface. The co-branding with the vendor Guestek is among the best I've seen. Featured free Web sites from Guestek's interface include several airlines. Featured sponsors on the Marriott portal include USAToday and Visa.  My hunch is that the cost may be partially offset by the sponsored advertising.  Would a free  model subsidized by online advertising be acceptable or objectionable to you?

     

    http://i396.photobucket.com/albums/pp50/TOWNHOUSEMEDIA/WifiBranding-Wentworth-1.jpg

     

    http://i396.photobucket.com/albums/pp50/TOWNHOUSEMEDIA/WifiBranding-Wentworth-0.jpg

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    mamianka Gold
    Currently Being Moderated
    Some of us have spent a bundle on business travel, and earned an elite status - and some of us have plunked down a chunk of money for a timeshare.  There should be free Internet for THOSE of us, at least - and actually, I think it should be free for ALL guests.  The pro-rated cost is then small ( yes, i understand that the TOTAL annual cost is not - but neither is their WATER bill!).  We expect certain ameneties - towels, water, TV - and in this century, WiFi.  Dispense with USA Today, or make the floral arrangments smaller in the lobby - give us what MATTERS ot us when we are on the road.  This is a petty argument - but I, too, will not pay a huge fee for WiFi.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    elitepro Member
    Currently Being Moderated

    I agree! I can also connect my laptop to my phone and I travel with a verizon aircard because it annoys me that Marriott charge for internet. See http://tinyurl.com/nzp99x  In the same way as airlines are annoying customers for charging for extras, the hotel industry is. Airlines new revenue sources alienate their custom...

    One week of travel pays for the air card.

    Even though I have this Verizon card, I do find it easy and convenient to sit down at a computer in the lounge. Much easier and faster than lugging my Notebook around and connecting all the bits. 

     

    I wish that I could rely on having a PC workstation in the Concierge lounges. Not all Marriott or Renaissance hotels have them but the less expensive CourtYard, SpringHill and Fairfields do.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    techie Platinum 7 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    Well, I could tell you about the time I travelled with my wife.  She had her computer and I had mine. They wanted GBP 15 per day for my wireless internet access, and GBP 15 per day for hers too.  That would have been GBP30 per day just for internet.  There was no hardwire in the rooms and couldn't get around it with a router.

     Bottom line is I lost about 10 nights of Marriott rewards points and they lost 10 nights of room revenue plus meals.  A lose-lose situation.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    archieb Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Let me add my voice to the chorus of "booos!" regarding charges for internet access.  It's a policy that's greatly out-of-step with where the market is going.  I agree that it should be complimentary at all Marriott brand hotels.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    "Out-of-step" sums up the situation extremely well. 


    With very minor exception, it's very clear that there is a consensus of mainline road warriors loyal to Marriott that concur on the need for FREE broadband/wifi. 

     

    What's NOT clear is the business solution.

     

    One of the ways that Marriott can implement free broadband is to embed that service into a rate so that rates go up.  Another is to offer it for paid or points.  Another way is to offset the cost by implementing online advertising, portal sponsorships, travel partner weblinks, content (news) partnerships, Skymall merchandising and so on. 

     

    Would the inclusion of online ads be objectionable?  Besides 'FREE' what else would you like to see? What do you NOT want to see?

     

    I recently checked-out of the Saddle Brook Marriott in northern New Jersey.  Wired or Wi/fi Marriott charges $12.95/day.  Here's the portal/login page:

     

    http://i396.photobucket.com/albums/pp50/TOWNHOUSEMEDIA/SaddleBrook-ConnecttotheInternet.jpg

    In earlier posts, there are screenshots of the interface at other Marriott properties.  What is so amazing is the LACK of consistency for a company that invests an incredible amount in brand marketing.  Not only is the look and feel inconsistent, the Terms and Conditions vary!  I also question the use of 3rd party URL's where security and privacy are not under the umbrella of a brand standard.  The only aspect of Marriott's broadband delivery that is consistent - is the price.  That's NOT good enough and fails my expectations every time.

     

    At the Saddle Brook and most every Marriott property is the option to connect to a Public wifi for Free.  Once my PC is trained to detect the public offering, there's no problem whatsoever 99.99% of the time.   

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    redwood Platinum 5 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated
    Try in Europe - $30 (20 GBP) and more is the starting cost!  its outrageous.  Ibahn seems to be the main provides.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    techie Platinum 7 Reviews
    Currently Being Moderated

    You're right about it being $30 in Europe.  We checked into the Amsterdam Marriott, it was 20 Euros I believe...and it was IBahn.

    My issue on the original post was not so much their fee, but wanting double for two computers.

    Anyway, the Amsterdam connection was so slow that I couldn't even surf a web page.  I asked for (and got) a refund the next morning.   The clerk said something about it just "being new"..and I'm thinking that Ibahn should know how to install it by now.  Good thing we were only staying there one night.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Kudos to Marriott corporate for the free broadband, portal interface, meaningful content and corporate branding at Courtyard by Marriott Boston Woburn.  This Marriott property is corporate owned and it is evident and effective in the portal interface that sits on top of the iBahn broadband platform.    

     

    I really like the portal interface because it is well-organized with content relevant to the location including dining, transportation, sightseeing and more.  There is a link that takes you directly to your Marriott Rewards account and upcoming reservations.  Not all of the functionality is working yet or may not be populated into the backend system, but the basic portal framework is there and quite successful.

     

    What's not in the portal interface is a link to Marriott Rewards Insiders! Let's hope Marriott will make it easier for guests to visit and participate in Insiders.

     

    http://i396.photobucket.com/albums/pp50/TOWNHOUSEMEDIA/Woburn-6.jpg

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    garwel Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    AT THE VERY LEAAST IT SHOULD BE GRATIS FOR ELITE MEMBERS (FOR SURE PLATINUM). THE NEW RESIDENCE INN POLICY OF SCALED BACK "FREE" ACCESS IS NOT EVEN AS FAST AS A CELL PHONE CONNECTION. WHAT A JOKE!

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

  • Re: Broadband/WIFI... Marriott pricing is a joke... who pays
    tjcnewyork Platinum
    Currently Being Moderated

    Garwell

     

    Which Residence Inn are you referring to?  Please elaborate what you mean by 'scaled-back' free access, do you mean slow or unreliable (dropping connection) or both or something else?

     

    I have upcoming stays at Residence Inns.  Your post suggests not taking comp internet access for granted at RI, so now I have to call, double-check the policy and possibly rebook elsewhere.

     

    Thanks for the heads-up.

    (For each location tag, you will be guided through a 3-step process to add (1) a city and a state or a city and a country, (2) a Marriott brand, and (3) a Marriott hotel.)

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