INCREASE! Some Vegas Resort Fees Approach $40: When is it Enough & How Does It Affect Hyatt/Mlife Mattress Runs?

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MGM Vegas Resort Fee Increases

MGM Resorts Resort Fees Raised

I remember the pre-2008 Vegas. It was a city that was booming. Fancy hotels were being built, room rates were skyrocketing and revenue per visitor was at seemingly all time highs. There was no need for resort fees. Then of course the crash hit and no one wanted to visit. The room rates plummeted and as the economy improved people began visiting again, but they weren’t spending like they used to.

At that point Las Vegas did what it has always been good at. It figured out a way to get more money from those that who were visiting. In some ways the resort fee was a natural fit for Vegas. After all it is the town that advertises $.99 shrimp cocktails to get you into the casino so you can lose all of your money. The resort fee is no different. Advertise a cheap room rate and then slap on a huge fee at check-in.

Start Small & Grow Larger

At first the fees started small and not all hotels had them. Of course over time pretty much all properties implemented them including Caesar’s Entertainment who had famously opposed them. Back in the good old days of 2011 Caesar’s heavily advertised their no resort fee policy and even organized stunts such as having Marie Osmond and 50 showgirls march down the Strip demanding an end to the fees.

But of course evil MGM Resorts (boooooooo) got their way and finally pressured Caesar’s into implementing the fees when they realized just how much they were losing. It was a bad day for Vegas and one that I am sure we will see again when the inevitable parking charges start to cascade down the Strip now that MGM is charging.

MGM Vegas Resort Fee Increases

MGM Vegas Resort Fee Increases
MGM Grand Lobby.

MGM Resorts not only spearheaded Vegas resort fees, but they have been among the most aggressive companies in increasing them. Less than 3 months ago they upped the resort fees at MGM Grand, the Mirage, Mandalay Bay and Delano to $35.84 per night including tax. Now, they have upped resort fees at a bunch of other properties.

Among the changes are:

  • Aria, Vdara and Bellagio increasing to $39.20 per night including tax.
  • Luxor and Excalibur increasing to $32.48 per night including tax.
  • Circus Circus (yes Circus Circus) increasing to $26.88 per night including tax.

According to Vegas Tripping, here are the current fees before and after tax for all MGM Resort properties after this recent change:

  • Aria, Bellagio, Vdara: $35($39.20/w tax) per night
  • MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, Delano, Mirage, The Signature: $32 ($35.84 w/tax) per night.
  • New York New York, Monte Carlo: $30 ($33.60 w/tax) per night.
  • Luxor, Excalibur: $29 ($32.48 w/tax) per night.
  • Circus Circus: from $24 ($26.88 w/tax) per night.

Mlife Mattress Runs

MGM Vegas Resort Fee Increases

With the Luxor and Excalibur going up in price, mattress running Mlife to get Hyatt stays will be a bit more expensive. Still, I was able to find Excalibur in December for $52 including the resort fee and Luxor for $55 including the resort fee. With the actual rates being less than the resort fee, these two properties are still the cheapest option for Hyatt stays if you can stay on those low priced dates.

Conclusion

With their highest end properties now basically costing $40 per night on top of the actual rate, I do wonder how much further MGM Resorts can push it. With that said, I was just looking at the Atlantis in the Bahamas yesterday and their resort fee is up to $50 per day, so I suppose there is room to go up!

What are your thoughts? Is this getting ridiculous?


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18 COMMENTS

    • They DO charge resort fees on award stays. Same with The Venetian/Palazzo on IHG award stays. The MGM properties even charge it on their own “comp” room offers unless it is booked through/waived by a host. For anyone interested, the following properties in Vegas do not charge resort fees: California, Best Western Casino Royale, Four Queens, Fremont, Gold Strike, M Resort and Main Street Station. Most the properties in downtown Vegas (the D, Downtown Grand, El Cortez, Plaza) that charge resort fees at least waive them on comped stays.

      • Totally agree that resort fees are beyond out of control, but they’re are not charged on all comped rooms, regardless of whether or not a host waives them. Each MGM property has its own criteria, but generally if your comped room includes resort credit, the resort fee is waived. Hyatt mattress running at Mlife properties has gotten more expensive, but there are still sweet spots to be had.

        • @ Henry – That’s not the experience I had. They were charged to me on both Mlife and MyVegas comps and the MLife comps included free play and resort credit. Front desk said it is standard. Maybe this is YMMV, but you’d think they would enforce it the same across the board.

          • Hey Mike! At NYNY and Monte Carlo, comped room offers which include resort credit are not charged resort fees. At Luxor and Excalibur, it depends on the offer code. Codes beginning with “GA” and “GI” have the resort fee waived. MGM and Mandalay Bay are very straightforward in their offers and spell out whether the fee is waived. No experience at Bellagio and Aria (my play doesn’t rate at those properties). I’m with you though, the policy should be consistent across all Mlife properties, much like lounge access.

  1. Atlantis at least gives you a lot in return like 2 bottles of cold Dasani daily. And many pools and water rides. Vegas MGM even charges for parking! I have decided Reno is a better value, has lower minimums for the tables, much easier airport, etc. When the new Raiders stadium taxes begin I predict Vegas visitors will see a mass exodus to Reno.

    • I’ve had serious card players tell me they prefer Reno over Las Vegas.

      However, I was in Reno this summer, and I noticed the fees are going up there as well.

      • While a couple of Reno properties have a small resort fee, the base rate for rooms and restaurants is WAY better than Vegas (except during the biggest summer festivals like Hot August Nights and before/after Burning Man).

  2. We passed ridiculous a few exits back. It’s like they’re somehow actually trying to torpedo their own business.

    • Someone should do a comparison of Las Vegas resort fees for each hotel and what you get for that resort fees. Or do you get nothing for the resort fees in Las Vegas?

      • You pretty much get nothing that what would be included in a standard rate at a Hampton Inn (except you don’t get free breakfast). Usually it includes incredibly slow “high speed” wifi, access to the fitness room and local phone calls.

  3. Resort fees need to be outlawed. Just like airline fuel surcharges.
    Show the cost of the goods & services. Don’t BS me with fees.

    • @Paul, wrong. Resort fees are there because hotels can charge them. Remember free checked bags? As long as people keep paying them they’re not going anywhere. There’s a very easy way to get resort fees to go away, tomorrow. But people will just whine about it and fork over the $40.

  4. Just stay at a regular hotel off the strip. It’s really not a big deal to drive there and park at one of the free lots. Or you can find a really cheap rate and include the resort fee on off days.

    I don’t even gamble on the strip anymore, the rules are so bad on the tables. Can’t even imagine how tight the machines might be. Tried the Station Casinos for the first time last time I went, pretty good!

  5. One of the worst aspects of these monumental ripoffs known as resort fees is the lack of transparency on total prices when shopping for a hotel. BTW, a growing number of NYC hotels are now adding “service fees” to their already high rates. So this disease continues to spread!

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