Charging Extra for Walk Ups?

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Proud Texan's picture
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05/30/2008

I know all about the philosophy "Heads in Beds"  but as has been mentioned elsewhere, one-nighters and walk-ups are a PITA.    There's all the last minute scrambling and grocery shopping that come with walk-ups and there's the same amount of work and cleaning for one-nighters as there are for those who stay two nights.  

Do any of you guys add a service fee for either?   I don't mind selling a room if it's empty, but our time is worth something too.

alias annie's picture
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09/14/2008

We've made a new policy... walk ins do not qualify for discounts.  had one couple that checked in and when I found out that we were not staying for breakfast that was fine.  then they tell me their leaving at midnight... uh... what????  that felt really weird.  how do you handle guests like that? or have you ever had that?

Proud Texan's picture
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alias annie wrote:

We've made a new policy... walk ins do not qualify for discounts.  had one couple that checked in and when I found out that we were not staying for breakfast that was fine.  then they tell me their leaving at midnight... uh... what????  that felt really weird.  how do you handle guests like that? or have you ever had that?

Hello!  You know what they were there for and it wasn't breakfast. 

greyswan's picture
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chalk it as another lesson learned and move on!

Morticia's picture
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Well, at least they told you they were leaving so you weren't standing around waiting for them to show up for breakfast or to check-out. In my case, lots of guests head out early to either shop or just hit the beach. I would never know they weren't coming back if I saw the car was gone!

I think if someone said that to me and didn't mention that they just needed to get a few hours shuteye, I would refer them to a much cheaper hotel. (OK, here goes...when I was 17 I took a bus trip with a BF to visit his grandparents. The bus arrived 3 hours earlier than planned, at 4 AM. I could not sit outside in the damp for that long without triggering an asthma attack. We got a room. We slept in separate beds. And didn't do anything my mother couldn't have read about on the front page of the paper, either. It happens.)

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JunieBJones (JBJ)'s picture
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alias annie wrote:

We've made a new policy... walk ins do not qualify for discounts.  had one couple that checked in and when I found out that we were not staying for breakfast that was fine.  then they tell me their leaving at midnight... uh... what????  that felt really weird.  how do you handle guests like that? or have you ever had that?

hourly discount? 

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alias annie's picture
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yea, really!!   I don't want to get that sort of clientelle at this place, but How would I have known?  I guess I'll just have to start asking lots more questions and again no discount - that may have discouraged the booking to begin with, or not.

JunieBJones (JBJ)'s picture
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alias annie wrote:

yea, really!!   I don't want to get that sort of clientelle at this place, but How would I have known?  I guess I'll just have to start asking lots more questions and again no discount - that may have discouraged the booking to begin with, or not.

Well it happens to all of us at some point.  Typically the HOUR of the booking is the red flag, so we don't take those late (could be bar hook ups).  Like I told you before about the internet fling where he arrived drunk and stoned and it only got worse.  Had I had known, I thought he would just sleep it off.  I will never forget that "baby on board" sticker on the back of her mini van with diff state plates to his.  That will haunt me for a long time.

Sorry you had that in your place, it is not right.  No matter WHAT society and hollyweird tries to SLOP onto us, it is not right.

seashanty's picture
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bree!!

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trishany's picture
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No, you can't charge extra.  Your rates are on our website. 

Morticia's picture
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trishany wrote:

No, you can't charge extra.  Your rates are on our website. 

Hey, Trish, if his rates are on your website he can charge what he wants.

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

I have had a lot more 3-night stays this year by offering 2 consecutive nights (or a 2-night package) to have a third night for $50 plus tax. I do not have any extra laundry to do so it does not add much to my overhead to do it. I do like that extra revenue when my honking loan payment time comes each month.

seashanty's picture
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06/02/2008

when i got my state license for lodging they sent me a packet of rate cards with instructions to post them in every room. 

 

swirt's picture
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05/17/2008

Ahh. I see.  I must have been reading too fast and missed the "in each room" 

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05/30/2008

This is counter to the "walk-in" mentality.  Last minute guests expect a deal because they see it that you need to fill your empty rooms.  I think last minute guests would be very offended by an upcharge or service fee.  If you're not prepared to take them, you just tell them that you have no availability.

Our rooms are always guest ready and we have the supplies on hand for breakfast.  But, if other guests are in and we're headed out and everything is running along, I don't need last minute guests to interfere with the flow.  I have taken same day guests in the afternoon and will continue to do so, if it suits me Smiling  Most of those have been referrals from people or businesses that I know.

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seashanty's picture
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also, in maine, we have to post our maximum rate in each guest room.  so i would have to decide that extra premium price and have it posted ... i haven't read the state rules on having different price levels.  pretty tired of 'rules'

swirt's picture
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05/17/2008

That's a law, or that's a rule for distributing your rack cards at certain visitor centers?

Morticia's picture
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05/22/2008

I'm thinking that you don't tell the walk-up guest that they are paying a premium. So, basic rate is, say $150/night. Walk-up pays $175. Unless they later on check the prices on your website, you're good to go.

I don't do this because I'm pretty much in the same place as seashanty. Walk-ins want deals.

seashanty's picture
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06/02/2008

charging more wouldn't fly here.

people 'walk up' to my door ... as you say, we say 'walk in'.  they are (mostly) looking for a deal. like the unbooked flights being sold by jetblue on ebay right now.  they want to pay less, not more.

if it is going to be that much trouble to you, i would not take them. if you flat out don't want one night stays, you set your minimum and that's that.  ideally, you should have enough groceries on hand to do a basic breakfast so you don't have to rush out to buy things.  try to have your rooms guest ready even if you don't expect someone.  there are times when you figure on a day off and it doesn't happen, and then you rush around.  but i try to get everything done as though there are guests checking in to every room.  it's much less stressful that way.

just starting out, you need to focus on great guests and building up a reputation as a nice place to stay, not think about pita's.  my first year, i needed every dollar i could get in the door.

 

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05/22/2008

That doesn't sound like such a good idea to meSad  Sorry, you just walked up here and I am going to charge you extra...NOT.

JunieBJones (JBJ)'s picture
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05/22/2008

Nom but you can discount for multiple night stays.  Some innkeepers do that here on the forum. example:  One night is $150, two nights is $140 per night, three nights is $135 per night.

Always got to be on the positive side.

swirt's picture
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05/17/2008

I think the idea of adding a fee is generally a bad spin to put on something.  If that is the effect you want, you might be better off to charge the fee on all rooms (as part of the room rate) but then issue a discount if they book more than one night or something like that. 

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