You book a hotel stay, pre-pay in full only to find at checkout the hotel is demanding more money for additional fee's you racked up during your stay even though you didn't purchase anything additional or charge anything to your room.
You travel to a foreign country and are asked to pay an additional fee when departing the airport even though you already paid fees and taxes with your airline ticket purchase.
Airlines, hotels and airports are all tacking on additional fees that often surprise travelers. Airlines now have to be more upfront about their extra fees beyond the actual ticket price. When do a search for an airline ticket you will often see a lower price in large print and then in small print what the additional fees are. However, hotels and airports are not as open about these extra fees. Some of these fees are fairly substantial and will add possibly hundreds of dollars to your travel expenses.
Samples of Airport Fees
British Airports: Currently the landing fee for Heathrow is $35.11 and at Gatwick $14.13 per person.
Singapore: Changi Airport, terminal 1,2 & 3 – $34.00, transit and transfer passengers – $12.00. Seletar Airport – $18.00.
New Zealand: You will have to pay $12.50 for arriving in the country and another $12.50 when you depart.
Belize: $35.50 departure fee for non-Belizean residents and $35.00 for residents as well as a $0.75 domestic security screening fee.
Thailand: $6.15 for domestic flights and $24.61 for international flights.
Costa Rica: $29.00 Airport departure fee.
Mexico: $65.00 Airport departure fee.
Turkey: $6.80 Airport departure fee.
Samples of Hotel Fees
Phone Charges: Local calls often cost around $1.50. Long distant calls can be extremely expensive. Even if you are calling an 800 including the 800 number you call on calling cards, can come with high fees. Make sure you know the calling fees before placing that call to avoid sticker shock.
Fitness Center: Even if you don't use the fitness center some hotels will still charge you a fee just for having access to it. If you are charged this fee you can let the front desk know you won't be using the fitness center and that you don't want to pay the fee for access to it. You may have to argue with them a bit to get them to drop the fee however, some hotels will not do so.
Daily Newspaper: You may think that daily newspaper delivered to your room each morning is complimentary but that may not be the case. Check with the front desk to see if you are being charged for the paper. If so, tell them you don't want the paper so they will stop delivery.
Energy Fee: Some hotels charge an energy fee though they are very vague as to what exactly that means.
Pool Usage: Some hotels charge you a pool access fee even if you don't use it. Often these fees are mandatory so it will be difficult to have them removed.
Parking: Even though you are a guest at the hotel some will still charge you to park in their parking lot. These fees can be $12.00 or more so make sure you know if the hotel offers free parking or not.
Water: Beware of that bottle of water waiting for you in the room. It may not be complimentary.
General Catchall Fee: This is a general fee to cover all additional expenses. Hotels do this so they don't have to break down all the individual fees, you will just pay one lump sum.
Bottom line is that you need to ask before you book. When you are planning a trip checkout the airports you will be traveling to and see if they charge an arrival or departure fee. When booking a hotel stay ask if there will be any additional fees upon checkout. Make sure you take a little extra cash just in case you run into extra fees you weren't aware of. Be aware that some of these fees will need to be paid in cash.