SOURCE: Tours.com

Tours.com

September 03, 2015 14:34 ET

Hotel Fee Charges Now at Record Highs

Tours.com's Travel-Intel Looks Behind the Ledger to Determine What Hotel Fees Are for and What We Can Do About Them

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - September 03, 2015) - Hotel fees are as common as coffee kiosks these days on the changing landscape of hospitality. Need Wi-Fi? There's a charge for that. Need to store a bag? There's a charge for that too -- just not one you are likely to see or have offered to you as an independent service that you pay for.

Tours.com's Travel-Intel reads the ledger and finds that those pesky fees -- often $25 a night added to a bill on check-out to the wide-eyed surprise of many hotel guests, are penciling out to some $247 billion collected by hotels this year -- up from $2.35 billion in 2014. This week's Travel-Intel looks at what's behind those fees and whether such surcharges are here to stay.

And while hotels are having some very good years with demand up, supply down and rates at a sweet peak, American travelers are voting with their feet. Travel-Intel looks at the top 50 travel destinations as noted by Hotels.com and the Hotel Price Index. They are largely the same as last year with Las Vegas coming out on top and the Grand Canyon making great new leaps in visitation. Following Las Vegas are New York City, Orlando, San Diego and Los Angeles for the top five U.S. destinations while Americans chose London, Paris, Rome, Toronto and Vancouver this year as last year for travel abroad. At the bottom of these two top 50 lists are Virginia Beach and Brazil.

Travel-Intel is a publication that goes out weekly to more than 103,000 sellers of travel. It is also posted online at Tours.com. The publication reports from travel conferences and expos, as well as popular hotels, exotic resorts, cruise ships and ports, and destinations near and far with stories that feature the latest intel on travel. Current features and archives can be viewed at www.travel-intel.com.

This week's issue also shows a timely article about visiting Antarctica for the southern summer and complementing the adventure with a stay at the plush Arakur Ushuala in Tierra del Fuego. The 131-room luxury property is a member of Leading Hotels of the World as well as part of the exclusive Kurtz-Ahlers collection of luxury hotels, resorts and destination specialists.

Travel-Intel also features Disney and the theme park and entertainment company's upcoming visions for new attractions at its parks from Anaheim to Orlando to Hong Kong, Shanghai and Paris. Expect to see imaginative bounty from the Star Wars brand as well as new concepts arising out of James Cameron's 2009 hit film Avatar.

Finally, Travel-Intel looks to Virtuoso, a network of luxury travel sellers around the country to find out what plans Americans are making for fall travel 2015. Italy and Mexico figure prominently this year, although new and emerging destinations such as Vietnam and India are gaining in popularity. For those who are heading to Europe, Travel-Intel details ten top castle stays to consider when immersing in the region's colorful history.

"Travel-Intel offers a window onto travel -- the industry and the trends -- that are important, both to those who are selling travel and to those travelers who are making plans. Travel is an ever-changing landscape and those invested in exploring this world need all the planning information they can get," says Lark Gould, content director for Travel-Intel and Tours.com.

As a veteran travel journalist who has been covering the travel industry for more than 20 years, Gould puts her incisive perspective into the weekly publication, with features and news updates, and also "packages" issues that present great travel deals to be found at hotels and resort locations worldwide. Travel-Intel can be viewed as a stand-alone site on Tours.com. Gould publishes travel columns and stories for Barclay's Travel Community, the Washington Times, Business Travel Executive, and Business Traveler USA, among other publications.

Tours.com is The Only Worldwide Directory of Tours and Vacations. As the most comprehensive tour and travel directory out there Tours.com is celebrating its 20th anniversary as an authority website, which launched 1995. It features a deep and searchable database of tours and tour companies according to company, region and experience. It is also a one-stop resource for all travel information, important phone numbers for travelers, regional experts, and travel agent specialists certified with in-depth knowledge in their chosen areas. For local sightseeing information in cities and towns around the world, companion site, Sightseeing.com, is the resource.

Tours.com is a now an official member of the America Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) and proudly wears its logo.

For more information visit www.tours.com.

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