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InterContinental New York Times Square adds a ‘resort fee’

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The InterContinental New York Times Square, a popular choice for Head for Points readers, has become the latest New York hotel to add a ‘resort fee’ to its rates.

According to the website:

The Daily Destination Fee of $30.00 USD plus applicable taxes allows our guest to enjoy: $25 Food & Beverage Credit per day, $15 Laundry/Dry Cleaning Credit per day, Premium High Speed Internet Service, Free Local & International calls, Gulliver Gate Museum pass, VIP pass for discounts at The Shops at Columbus Circle, Time Warner Center

If you use the credit against breakfast then you are almost even, although there are no shortage of places nearby to get a good breakfast for a lot less than $25 (including the diner used in Seinfeld, the name of which I always forget).  You are in more trouble if you have already booked a ‘bed and breakfast’ rate as you are then arguably forced to eat in at night.

This fee is not made clear on until the final booking page.  Given that taxes are also excluded from the headline price, it is now getting a bit silly.  You have the IHG website quoting you $620 per night which suddenly becomes $750 per night when taxes and the ‘destination fee’ are added.

Meanwhile, the lawsuit between IHG and the hotel owner is continuing.  The landlord wants to dump InterContinental as the operator but IHG is resisting this.  I would be wary of making any cash bookings for this hotel well in advance.

The other InterContinental in New York, The Barclay, does not have a ‘destination fee’ (yet?).

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Comments (94)

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  • Chris says:

    I thought the IC Times and the main London one were going to stay owned by IHG (having flogged all their other hotels). What made them sell? And what is the dispute about?

  • John says:

    The extra charges always need to be shown *at the end*, but in the EU you are supposed to show all extra charges from the beginning.

    Strictly speaking, I would have thought the only thing which matters is whether the hotel is being advertised to a European customer rather than where the hotel is. Anyway, Hilton appears to be complying with the GDPR worldwide.

    • Sussex Bantam says:

      GDPR is nothing to do with pricing transparency – if it only it were as simple as that !

  • Alan says:

    Certainly hope the Barclay doesn’t introduce such a fee (I’ve got an AMB cert weekend booked there for later in the year), although if they do I’ll be pointing out it didn’t exist when I booked so I won’t be planning on paying it!

  • ankomonkey says:

    OT: Has anyone here ever flown Ukraine International Airlines in Y? Any feedback?

    • Chris says:

      Flown them a few times mid haul (LON-KBP; KBP-DXB). Absolutely fine with good service / equipment and sizeable sandwiches given out for free. Clean and safe and communication is good. Had one bad experience where a passenger who was clearly under the influence (of several things!) boarded the flight and sat in the row opposite me. Proceeded to swear and shout all the way back to London and was in need of a good shower given the absolute stink. I rather suspect that if it wasn’t for his (British) passport he wouldn’t have been allowed to board at KBP, and he certainly wouldn’t have in the UK. But whether that’s UA’s fault or the airport staff I don’t know. Depending on price would still fly them again.

      • ankomonkey says:

        Thanks for the reply. I’ve taken the plunge as the price was good and timings were better than most of the competition. Also flying mid-haul, so not too long if things go awry.

  • Alan says:

    This resort fee thing is going to come to a head in NYC soon. The City isn’t happy about it as the taxes are lower on resort fees than they are on rooms and they are losing millions of dollars a year.

    • Andrew says:

      Create a 100% tax on the presented “value” of resort fees. So 30$ fee plus $40 tax.

      No resident of the City is going to protest about them.

  • Kathy says:

    Does that $25 credit actually buy you breakfast at the IC? I would have thought it would be more than that.

    • Graham Walsh says:

      Looking online now breakfast is about £32 extra to be included in the room. Oddly picking a random date next month there is no option for a room with breakfast rate. There is an additional charge of £25.41 with no explanation of what it is.

      Also on the IHG app I hate their marketing of “Book anywhere else and you’ll overpay”.

      • Kathy says:

        The difference between room only and B&B is about £18 for some nights next week.
        Shocking the difference between the quoted ‘per night’ cost and the actual end cost – a £298 per night rate for 2 nights totals to £740!

        Expedia displays the cost for the same nights as £700 +$60 due at the hotel. My maths makes that about a £5 more than booking direct with IHG, which makes it the simplest and quickest way to get a reasonably accurate price. And, really, once you’re using Expedia and comparing prices with all the other luxury hotels in the same area you’re going to be tempted to book something cheaper – they’re shooting themselves in the foot!

  • Judge says:

    When first made available to book last year, Indigo Leicester Square was 50,000 points per night. It very quickly rose to 60,000 per night, long before the latest devaluation. In other words it was actually the same price as the IC Park Lane for a while. At least it didn’t go up to 70,000! I do think the price can be justified though given the location, since the IC is at the edge of the West End rather than bang in the middle. Can’t expect as big a room on Leicester Square.

    P.S. Note some of the smaller rooms are windowless!

    • Lumma says:

      Leicester Square is such a ridiculous place for hotel prices when you consider it’s the armpit of central London. The Premier Inn is often around £200 a night, so going off 0.4p an IHG point this is £240 worth of points.

      • Kevin says:

        It’s quite a good location. Perfect for Chinatown, Covent Garden, Portrait and National galleries. Theatre tickets booth. Falafel at Gabbys. If you’ve got kids you have the Lego store on your doorstep.

        If I was a tourist I’d rather stay there than Park Lane.

  • Tim W says:

    “Vueling … has launched a €29.99 sale (including booking fees and card charges)”
    I thought card charges were illegal now?

    • john says:

      Vueling were still adding ‘Airline Card Fee’ to them in January. I booked it through Expedia as the Vueling site wouldn’t take my amex and I moaned at Expedia who refunded the £4.12 of card fees!

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