Hotels with resort fees as low as $2.50
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First and foremost: The best resort fee is no resort fee. Although hotels can certainly charge additional fees for optional services, all mandatory fees should be included in the room rate. Resort fees -- which may be disguised as a service fee, energy fee or simply listed as "miscellaneous" on your invoice -- are a way for hotels to charge guests more without displaying higher room rates. Plus, they make it difficult to compare prices without clicking through to the final booking page and reading all the fine print for every property you consider.
Since resort fees aren't included in room rates, you may need to pay the fees even on award night stays. The cost of these fees also won't count toward the cost of your free night when booking through Hotels.com/venture to get a 24% return with your Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card through Jan. 31, 2020. TPG's Loyalty and Engagement Editor Richard Kerr recently rounded up the 10 most outrageous resort fees, and TPG has additional posts discussing why resort fees must go and how to avoid resort fees.
Luckily, despite how it may feel, most properties don't charge resort fees. When they do, the fee is usually high, to the tune of $20, $30 or more per day. Small resort fees can actually be trickier to spot -- especially if the property caters to travelers who aren't familiar with normal taxes and fees in the region, or if the resort fee is labeled as a service fee or miscellaneous fee. In these cases, guests may not even realize they are paying a resort fee.
The table below shows some properties in major loyalty programs that levy a resort fee of less than $20 per night. Although these fees are relatively small, they're easy to miss as they could easily blend into the nightly total if you aren't careful.
|Hotel||City, State||Fee||What The Fee Provides|
|Best Western Orlando Convention Center Hotel||Orlando, FL||$2.50 service fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Quality Inn||Chandler, AZ||$3 surcharge/service/resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Holiday Inn: North Phoenix||Phoenix, AZ||$3 energy surcharge per night||Presumably power, but not disclosed|
|Quality Inn & Suites Hollywood Boulevard||Hollywood, FL||$3.39 hotel services/resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Comfort Inn & Suites near Universal Orlando Resort||Orlando, FL||$3.94 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Howard Johnson by Wyndham Lake Front Park Kissimmee||Orlando, FL||$4 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Days Inn by Wyndham Orlando Near Millenia Mall||Orlando, FL||$4 miscellaneous fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Econo Lodge International Drive||Orlando, FL||$4.65 resort fee per night||Parking, in-room safe and shuttle transportation to parks|
|SureStay Hotel by Best Western Buena Park Anaheim||Buena Park, CA||$4.95 assessment and service fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Quality Suites||Orlando, FL||$5 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Staybridge Suites: Times Square - New York City||New York, NY||$5 housekeeping fee per night||Daily housekeeping and full service every third day|
|BLVD Hotel, An Ascend Hotel Collection Member||Costa Mesa, CA||$5 hotel service/resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Best Western Plus Pavilions
Best Western Plus Anaheim Inn
|Anaheim, CA||$5 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Rodeway Inn & Suites Fort Lauderdale Airport & Cruise Port||Fort Lauderdale, FL||$6 resort fee per night (split into a $5 hotel services fee per night and a $1 airport surcharge fee per night)||Presumably the airport shuttle, but not disclosed|
|Quality Suites Lake Buena Vista||Orlando, FL||$6.95 hotel service/resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Quality Inn Maingate West||Clermont, FL||$6.96 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Holiday Inn Club Vacations: At Orange Lake Resort||Kissimmee, FL||$7.95 resort fee per night||Shuttle service throughout the resort, fitness centers, business center, seven outdoor pools and hot tubs, access to River Island, sports courts, select on-site activities and entertainment (including movies, local calls, Wi-Fi and parking)|
|Comfort Inn International Dr.||Orlando, FL||$7.95 resort fee per night||Shuttles to the local theme parks|
|Best Western International Drive - Orlando||Orlando, FL||$8.95 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Cambria Hotel Chicago Magnificent Mile||Chicago, IL||$9.95 urban/resort fee per night||Wi-Fi, the business center, fitness center and a donation to Lurie Children's Hospital|
|Econo Lodge Inn & Suites Maingate Central||Kissimmee, FL||$9.95 service/resort fee per night||Shuttles to Disney World, Sea World Universal Studio, in-room safe and micro fridge|
|Super 8 by Wyndham Las Vegas North Strip/Fremont St. Area||Las Vegas, NV||$10 service fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Quality Inn & Suites Anaheim Maingate||Anaheim, CA||$10 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Clarion Inn & Suites Kissimmee-Lake Buena Vista South||Kissimmee, FL||$10 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Quality Inn & Suites Anaheim At The Park||Anaheim, CA||$11.70 hotel service/resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Clarion Suites Kissimmee-Orlando Maingate||Kissimmee, FL||$12 resort fee per night||Scheduled transportation to and from the theme parks, complete buffet breakfast, enhanced high-speed internet, self-parking and scheduled transportation to outlet mall|
|Comfort Inn Maingate Kissimmee||Kissimmee, FL||$12 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts: Phoenix - Chandler Golf Resort||Chandler, AZ||$15 resort fee per night||Welcome drink (beer, wine or soda) at 1912 lounge, Wi-Fi access throughout resort, 24-hour access to fitness center, two bottled waters replenished daily, one bucket of range balls per guest per stay, 15% off published rates at San Marcos Golf Course, phone calls, self parking, 10% discount on Vaya Salon services and massage located on site and 10% discount at Crust Restaurant located on-site|
|Ramada Plaza by Wyndham Marco Polo Beach Resort||Sunny Isles Beach, FL||$15 resort fee per night||Not disclosed|
|Marriott Phoenix Resort Tempe at The Buttes||Tempe, AZ||$15 resort fee per night||Access to tennis/volleyball courts, hike tour, pool activities and yoga|
|Best Western Lake Buena Vista - Disney Springs Resort Area||Lake Buena Vista, FL||$15.74 resort fee per night||Complimentary Wi-Fi, transportation to all four Walt Disney World theme parks and Disney Springs, unlimited admission to the resort pool, in-room local and 1-800 calls and complimentary printing in the business center|
|Holiday Inn Express & Suites: S Lake Buena Vista||Kissimmee, FL||$18 service charge per night||Theme park shuttle services, wireless internet, access to three outdoor pools with waterslides, 18-hole miniature golf course, BBQ areas, kid's splash pad, playground, and tiki bar with food and beverage available for purchase|
|Days Inn by Wyndham Las Vegas Wild Wild West Gambling Hall||Las Vegas, NV||$18.13 hotel service fee per night||Not disclosed|
|DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Orlando at SeaWorld||Orlando, FL||$19.95 resort charge per night||Internet access, self park, theme park transportation, one appetizer with purchase of entree in Laguna or Crazy Squirrel per stay, two bottled waters from The Market per stay, 10% discount in Spa and local and toll free calls|
|Embassy Suites by Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista Resort||Orlando, FL||$19.95 resort charge per night||Basic internet access, Disney theme park shuttle, 10% off spa service, Disney dive-in movies, two bottles of water, use of outdoor amenities, Disney Good Neighbor concierge service and unlimited 1-800 and local calls|
As you can see in the table, most of the properties aren't resorts in the traditional sense. You might also notice that many of the properties in the table are part of Choice Hotels or Wyndham. However, don't assume only these properties are levying resort fees. Many other properties at these destinations also charge resort fees, and simply aren't included in this table because they charge $20 a fee of or more per night.
Finally, this list is not designed to be comprehensive -- feel free to mention additional properties with low resort fees that can be easy to miss in the comment section below.
These small resort fees are easy to overlook, and many hotels don't even provide a list of actual benefits for paying them. For the properties that do provide a list of benefits, most benefits are (1) not benefits I'd use, (2) benefits that are normally expected at a hotel or (3) benefits that I'd get as an elite. In almost every case, I'd choose to opt out of the fees if I could. You can certainly ask at check-in or checkout to have the fees waived, but you may or may not be successful.
If you're upset about resort fees, the best solution is to avoid properties that charge them. However, doing so will require reading the fine print and investigating the taxes and fees during booking carefully.