This year U.S. hotels will rake $1.95 billion in fees and surcharges, a new record.
That’s according to a new forecast of ancillary revenue in the lodging industry by Bjorn Hanson, dean of New York University’s Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management.
The forecast represents a roughly 80% spike since 2001.
While minibar re-stocking and in-room phone charges are old news, fees for housekeeping, room-service trays, early cancellations are all on the upswing.
“Most fees and surcharges are highly profitable,” says Dr. Bjorn Hanson, Divisional Dean of the school, in a statement. “Most have incremental profitability of 80% to 90% or more.”
Rate increases have also helped boost the hotel’s take.
To the latest figures available for this year, occupancy rates have been up 18% and average room rates up 10% at “upper-upscale” U.S. hotels, over the comparable week in 2010, According to Smith Travel Research, the leading industry analyst.
NB: Image of hotel lobby courtesy of Shutterstock.