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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Another interesting discussion

I don't think there is too much new being said on this thread, but it does warm the heart to know that this issue is alive and well.  For some it has been discussed too much.  I like to see folks waking up to it and responding.  I did not add my two cents.  Most of what was said I agree with.  I'll reproduce my remarks under the link.

http://www.vegasmessageboard.com/forums/showthread.php?t=59782&highlight=resort+fees

There is not much left to be said, and I respect that folks are perhaps getting tired of kicking the dead horse. Perhaps it is becoming more like the $20 trick threads.
I agree with most everyone, actually.
I admire the purist stance that started this thread. I am not so principled. 
I agree with those who would do the math and let that decide and it seems their position is strengthened by those who suggest the fees be easy to see so the math is easier on the customer, and comps and deals spelled out so the math is possible.
I liked very much Ken's summary of all the sorts of folks who make all sorts of choices, although I think he overestimates how many travelers are informed. I personally talk to folks everyday who have not heard of resort fees, so more exposure for infrequent and travelers not so savy as regulars on this board seems valuable.
My guess is that as wearisome as it might be for regulars on the board to have encountered this discussion again, there are some newbies who are looking at it for the first time.
Are there any topics that do not repeat themselves?
And, no rudeness intended, but if the topic is wearisome and clearly indicated in the title, can't overburdened readers just skip the thread? I skip many threads here everyday.

I understand that Harrah's does not offer good gambling in many areas and that offsets their attraction as a no resort fee hotel. However, in live poker Harrah's casinos offer some of the best gambling available because they comp free rooms for live poker play, something no other casino in the world does, as well as the hourly regular comp (Imperial Palace is $2 an hour)
On the strip they offer a one-of-a-kind in Vegas frugal low spread limit game at O'Shea's with very small blinds and good drink service.

Harrah's does rake a bit more, but if we consider table selection part of our live poker play strategy, we want to be away from the Vegas regulars who do the rake math (and so can do the pot odds math, and figure the tells, and know how their buds at the table play) and we want to be playing with tourists who say, "Hey, it's only money." 
One extra loose player will more than pay the added rake. 
So I would argue that for live poker players, Harrah's properties offer player advantage. They do for me.

I'd also like to plow some frugal middle ground between the boycotting purists and those who just pay the fees. 
Take a look at the Orleans and the Gold Coast and the Palms. They have very low resort fees when those fees are charged at all. 
Consider this math: the entire resort fee at the Gold Coast ($3) is almost equal to just the added tax generated by the resort fee at Red Rock. 
Gold Coast offers good gambling too. And while it is slightly "off strip," the free shuttle or quick cab ride or city bus makes it very accessible. 

Most people who do the math and offset one cab ride home each night (after the shuttles quit at midnight) against the difference in room rates, can find the GC or Orleans ($5 resort fee) a very frugal alternative. 
And if you are riding the SDX (new name for ACE) or Deuce during the day, a ride back to the Orleans on the bus is just another free bus ride added to your 24 hour pass.
(The Flamingo bus is going to be more limited as of Nov 7 in early morning hours, running only once every hour)

These hotels offer a compromise to the pure resort fee stance. However, when the newly imposed fees at hotels are now coming out at $20 a night, those small fees seem like a bargain.
And as Ken says, a note to those places indicating that you chose them or are considering them because they kept their fees low is more effective than any board discussion. That may help keep them from raising fees.

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