Pay Up! Newly Increased Vegas Resort Fees Pass $50 & How to Avoid Them!

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Las Vegas Resort Fees 2018

Love them or hate them (who would love them), resort fees are not only becoming more prominent across the country, but they aren’t going anywhere. As more and more properties implement resort fees and customers become more accustomed to them, I predict we will see resort fees as being the norm and not the exception.

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One of the biggest markets where resort fees have spread like the plague is Las Vegas. These fees started as minor revenue generators during the recession and have grown into hefty sums of money which on some nights amounts to MORE than the actual room rate.

Las Vegas Resort Fees 2018
Luxury Suite (standard room) at the Palazzo.

So far this year we have seen just about every major property in Vegas raise its resort fees. First it was Caesars Entertainment and then MGM Resorts joined in on the fun. This past week it was Las Vegas Sands who decided to up the ante on resort fees. They increased the fee to $45 at their Venetian and Palazzo properties. That comes to about $51 when tax is figured in.

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As of now, this $45 resort fee is the most expensive among the Las Vegas casinos, however I have no doubt that others will match or “beat” it. Las Vegas Sands has raised their resort fee by over $20 over the past 3 years. While they still don’t charge for parking like most of their competitors, $50+ per night is a huge chunk of change.

Las Vegas Resort Fees 2018

Las Vegas Resort Fees as of March, 2018

As of now, here are the resort fees you can expect to pay in Las Vegas. I predict we will see our first $50 pre-tax resort fee within the year.

  • $45 – Palazzo, The Venetian
  • $39 – Bellagio, Vdara, Aria, Encore, Wynn Las Vegas, Four Seasons, Mandarin Oriental, Nobu, Caesars Palace, The Cosmopolitan, Green Valley Ranch, Red Rock Resort
  • $37 – Paris, Planet Hollywood, The Cromwell, Delano, MGM Grand, The Mirage, The Signature at MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, Monte Carlo, New York – New York
  • $35 – Luxor, Excalibur, Tropicana, Trump International, The Linq, Bally’s, Harrah’s, Flamingo, Treasure Island
  • $33 – Hard Rock Hotel
  • $32.99 – Stratosphere
  • $32 – SLS
  • $30 – Rio, Circus Circus
  • $29.50 – Golden Nugget
  • $29 – Hooters Hotel
  • $25.99 – Palace Station
  • $23 – Downtown Grand
  • $20.99 – Gold Coast, Suncoast, Silver Sevens, The Orleans
  • $19.99 – Aliante Hotel, Sam’s Town, Super 8 at Ellis Island
  • $14.95 – El Cortez

Las Vegas Resort Fees 2018

Avoiding Las Vegas Resort Fees

Thankfully there are a couple (not many) ways to avoid the insanely pricey Las Vegas resort fees. You can stay at a hotel which doesn’t charge a resort fee or you can get Founderscard. Another option for gamblers is to concentrate their play at their hotel’s casino and contact a host prior to checkout to ask if they can help you out with the resort fees. Our team reports a decent success rate with this approach.

Related: Hotel Review: Aria Resort and Casino Sky Suites Penthouse. Luxury at its Finest?

Founderscard

I signed up for Founderscard primarily to get Total Rewards Diamond status and have been able to get a huge value from my membership. Total Rewards Diamond comes with a lot of perks, but perhaps the biggest one is no resort fees! As you can see from the prices above, that can save up to $39 (plus 13% tax) per night depending on the hotel. Depending on how often you visit Vegas, your Founderscard could pay for itself quickly.

One of the nice things about Founderscard and Total Rewards Diamond is that you can avoid resort fees at popular properties like Caesars Palace, Nobu and Planet Hollywood. Unfortunately, if you want to stay at a property with no resort fee, it generally won’t be the most desirable. (See list below.)

Las Vegas Resort Fees 2018

Las Vegas No Resort Fee Hotels

Of course if you just want somewhere to lay your head down, there are some hotels which offer their rooms sans fee.

Here is a quick list of Las Vegas hotels without a resort fee according to Las Vegas Direct:

  • Ambassador Strip Inn Travelodge
  • Americas Best Value Inn
  • Bluegreen Club 36 resort
  • California Hotel
  • Casino Royale
  • Courtyard by Marriott
  • Desert Rose Resort
  • Elara (PH Tower)
  • Emerald Suites Convention Center
  • Emerald Suites S. Las Vegas
  • Four Queens
  • Fremont
  • Hawthorn Inn
  • Holiday Inn Express
  • La Quinta Inn
  • Lucky Club Casino
  • Main Street Station
  • Marriott Convention Center
  • Red Roof Inn
  • Residence Inn
  • Royal Resort
  • Siena Suites Hotel
  • Skylofts
  • WorldMark Tropicana
  • WorldMark Las Vegas Blvd
  • Travelodge Las Vegas Center Strip
  • Wyndham Grand Desert
  • Wyndham Desert Blue

Related: Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino Review – Suite & Regular Room Review

Your Thoughts?

With these sky high fees that have now crossed the $50 mark including tax, Las Vegas continues on its journey of being a pricey vacation destination. Between resort fees and paid parking (which has increased at many hotels this year as well), it is important now more than ever to make your Vegas hotel decisions when factoring in your TOTAL cost including all fees and parking.

What do you think? Is this too far or will we just keep seeing Las Vegas resort fees increase? Share your thoughts in the comments!

HT: RJ


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25 COMMENTS

  1. The Total Rewards card will waive resort fees if you spend $15,000 in one year or if you get 15,000 tier points thru Total Rewards they waive all resort fees at their properties which include Caesars Palace.

    • Thanks for the information. Is this published anywhere? I thought the highest level you could get through the credit card is Platinum status which doesn’t waive fees. Are you saying simply by earning 15K through credit card spend they will waive the fees?

      • The only thing I can find related to a spending benefit on the TR card is maintaining Platinum at $5k and getting “VIP” status at $10k which gets you line access at restaurants, check-in, taxis, and pool access. Nothing is mentioned about waived resort fee.

        I think Marshall is confused about tier points vs rewards credits. Spend on the TR CC earns reward credits, which can be cashed out at 1c/RC. To qualify for Diamond, and thus waived resort fees, you need tier credits, which you do not earn from credit card spend on the TR card but rather for gambling and qualifying spend at Caesars resorts.

  2. Hi Shawn. Confess I’ve really let you have it on Vegas fees and charging you for EVERYTHING before (e.g., it’s like flying Spirit airlines — on the ground, only worse) Yet credit to you for gamely (ahem) trying to put lipstick on the proverbial … whatever. 😉

    I do truly (and sincerely) hope you’re prediction about resort fees being the wave of the future is quite wrong. The king of misdirection, shady dealing, buy ‘n switch and resort fees may be in the White House for now, but I honestly do not see resort fees spreading across the country. Frankly, I avoid them like the plague — and when I find out ANY hotel is trying to slip them on me, I’ll either cancel that reservation, or see if by paying 100% on points, I can have them waved. (as many chains do)

    Bottom line: single best and easiest way to avoid paying Vegas resort fees….

    is to avoid traveling to Vegas.

    (when your Chamber of “Commerce” reads that, they’ll likely pound you for not deleting it. *tic)

  3. I go to Vegas often. Because of the frequency of my visits, I don’t feel a need to be on the Strip or even anywhere close to it, perhaps a better description is that I avoid the Strip like the plague! Always remember, Vegas is also a very large city, there’s plenty of options for “regular” hotels with chains we all use to glean our points. Maybe consider those unless you’re a Vegas newbie and absolutely must stay on the Strip.

  4. Do you have to reserve the hotel thru the Founderscard system to get the waiver? Do you still get credit for stays and points with the hotel loyalty club?

  5. Vegas used to be one of my favorite places to go. All these fees have really chipped away at my love for it. The parking fee tacked on to a hotel you’re already paying a separate resort fee on has been the straw for me. I haven’t been back since last summer, and don’t know if I even want to at this point.

    What I loved about Vegas was the free flowing booze, the relatively cheap (and good food), and the dream of having the chance to win some money. I’ve turned my sights to Laughlin now. Is this the surest sign that I’m getting older and am no longer hip?

    • There are still a few casinos on the strip with free parking like SLS and Planet Hollywood but it is getting harder.

  6. Vegas can be CHEAP if one knows the “tricks of the trade. First off, you can fly there incredibly cheap if you go on “off-days” and on economy airlines. Second, once your in McCarran International Airport, you can get a city bus at the terminal to the Strip for a few dollars and to Downtown for around $6. A cab there will be like $25-$35 or more! Fourth, Downtown has decent hotels and many do not have resort fee’s and if they do, they are small compared to the Strip. Fifth, when staying Downtown, you can take FREE shuttles to the Strip and back (via Sam’s Town) at the Fremont Casino. If it’s late in the evening and the shuttle stops running, take a 24-hour city bus. I think that you can take UNLIMITED rides on the “Duce” for $10 a day. Look online for the City of Las Vegas bus schedule. No need to start getting screwed the second you leave the airport terminal. Bottom line, if you want to have a Liberace Vegas Vacation, then paying the resort fee’s won’t be a big deal for you. If your like me, staying Downtown with next to free transportation over the entire city, I have more fun than than 95% of the new-comers and even some repeat visitors. Besides, staying Downtown is as close to “Old Vegas” as one will get and the live bands and entertainment on Fremont Street in the evenings brings me back to the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s!

  7. There is nothing unique about Vegas anymore. Most states have casinos and entertainment. last month I stayed at the Excalibur. I enjoy it because of the pools. The rooms are fairly nice as well. However, the resort fees and a separate parking fee PER DAY did it for me. I will not return. Vegas has turned into a tourist trap. The prices would not be nearly as high if half the strip wasn’t owned by MGM and the other half Ceaser’s. They have a very tight control on the lower half of the strip. A resort fee for local calls and 800#? really??? When was the last time you used a phone in a hotel room. A newspaper? Good luck finding one. Internet?? Again, if you can find internet that works correctly and is not “Spotty”, best of luck! It is the hotels choosing to provide a pool for its guests as well as a phone. the Federal Trade Commision needs to look at this much closer. Vegas is just a joke.

  8. Rob, I used to love Vegas, too, especially since I live only 4 hours away and can drive there. It was really one of the cheapest weekend getaways for us. Now, it’s ridiculous. I used to HAVE to go at least once a year, but I honestly never have to go again. They are taking major advantage of tourists mostly, and people are so excited about overrated LV, that they are just coughing up the ridiculous fees. About 3 days in Vegas is my limit. The city becomes extremely depressing and boring and it’s time for me to go home. I concur with your entire post.

    Now, we just drive for an hour and a half to Pechanga and it’s just like a Vegas casino. We stay in a nearby hotel for a few nights and have a great time. Who needs Vegas??

  9. I’m pretty sick of these fake resort charges that account for nothing that hotels haven’t already included before. You can go to a hotel anywhere and get free internet and pool without these charges and what pay 2.50 to print a piece of paper and fax? If they needed to include the cost of these “amenities” include it in the room rate. I was going to get married in Vegas next year, but some family members have never been there, may budget for the hotel when they book, and be surprised to find these disgusting charges upon their checkout. I won’t be subjecting them to that and won’t be going to Vegas as planned this year due to MGM suing victims of the shooting as a ploy to relieve themselves of any responsibility.

  10. I am from Belfast Northern Ireland we stayed in one of the hotels on the strip before I got the keys to our room we were charged 495 dollars resort fees to be honest people from all parts of Ireland will think again about going there and it’s not that we our young we don’t do th gym it’s a shambles people will think twice about going back to Las Vegas what about giving the resort fees to the homeless

  11. Shawn …. Elara by Hilton “PH Tower” now charge a daily resort fee of $25.00 USD I just wanted to book a room but I got this : ” Daily Resort Charge will be added to the room rate and includes: Guest Internet access; domestic long distance calls (30 min per day max); DVD Now w/unlimited movies; 2 Starbucks coffees or 2 16oz bottles of water per day; 1-800/Local Calls. ” At least you get 2 starbucks coffees a day lol …. I’m pretty sure in no time Elara will charge also for the parking … I’m really upset with all these resort fees and parking fees and what more next?

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