Hyatt Now Displaying Resort Fees in Search Results, Just One Week After Being Sued Hyatt Now Displaying Resort Fees in Search Results, Just One Week After Being Sued

Hyatt Now Displaying Resort Fees in Search Results, Just One Week After Being Sued

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Update: That was fast! Hyatt is now displaying the resort fees and destination fees on search results and booking pages in response to the lawsuit we originally published about on August 22, 2023. This post has been updated to reflect these changes.

Nobody hates a resort fee like a traveler. Tacked onto nightly rates, these fees purport to add “value” to your stay by charging mandatory fees while providing amenities you probably would have gotten anyway. Or that you don't care about but have to pay for regardless. Marriott has already faced a lawsuit for its deceptive pricing and has been forced to settle.

Now Hyatt is on the chopping block, with Travelers United suing the hotel chain for its lack of transparency around deceptive resort fees. Let's take a look at what's going on, what's likely going to happen, and how that's going to affect you.

Hyatt's Lawsuit

What's really going on here? A press release from the lawyers representing Travelers United calls the added fees “junk fees” — and we're not inclined to disagree. This applies to resort fees, destination fees, and other fees that are being added to your nightly rate.

The crux of the issue is that these types of fees aren't clearly represented. As with Marriott, Hyatt has opted to exclude the total nightly rate from the prices it shows. Instead, it displays a large banner letting you know that there's an additional cost to your booking.

Dream Nashville resort fee on Hyatt website
Credit: Hyatt

If this goes the same way as the Marriott lawsuit, the end result will probably include Hyatt adding a toggle to let you see the “full” price during your search, rather than at the checkout page (or even at the hotel).

This is good news for travelers since it's a more transparent process. It's especially true for those casual bookers who click through with nary a glance — only to be unpleasantly surprised when the booking price skyrockets when it's time to check out.

Hyatt Now Showing Resort & Destination Fees

Until Marriott, Hyatt moved quickly after this lawsuit was filed. Now, when you search for a hotel on Hyatt's website, the first page of search results will indicate the resort fees/destination fees next to the price — before you select a hotel and start the booking process.

Waikiki search results from Hyatt's website, with indications of resort and destination fees
The fees are indicated next to the nightly price.

And it's also there even if you're booking with points (which shouldn't matter; more on that below).

Waikiki search results from Hyatt's website when booking with points, including indications of resort and destination fees
It also shows when you're booking with points.

Once you select a hotel, you'll see the resort fee labeled clearly. There's a link to click on, taking you to information about what the fee includes.

a box circles the description of the resort fee on this hotel booking page
The resort fee is described, with a link to see what it includes.

We also checked New York City to ensure this wasn't just Hawaii-specific. The destination fee is clearly labeled on the hotels charging it.

Hyatt hotel search results for New York City with the words "destination fee" highlighted
Search results for hotels in New York City showing destination fees.

In a little over a week, Hyatt has started displaying these fees upfront. They're not gone, but Hyatt did something in roughly a week that Marriott took years to accomplish.

How To Avoid Resort Fees at Hyatt

Let's be real: We all hate resort fees, destination fees, we-swear-there's-value-in-this fees, etc. Happily for travelers, however, it's nearly always possible to avoid resort fees. At Hyatt, those with top-tier Globalist elite status have resort fees waived on all their stays, even when they're using cash to pay. In theory, this works for “destination” fees as well, though data points have suggested that there may be pushback on this.

Hyatt resort fee elite status benefit
Credit: Hyatt

Those who are staying on points or free night certificates are also entitled to waived resort fees, though you'll want to note that this benefit doesn't apply to cash + points bookings; since there's money involved, you'll still be charged a fee (unless you're a Globalist).

Related: Here's When You Will and Won't Pay Resort Fees on Award Stays

Final Thoughts

This lawsuit is another that challenges the addition of resort fees late in the booking process. We already hate resort fees, so we're not especially fussed to see this lawsuit targeting Hyatt. Now, Hyatt has responded rather quickly by adding an indication of the fees on the first page of search results as well as the page where you choose your room. It's also listed on the final cost for your reservation at the time of payment, but it was always there. The issue was showing the fees to would-be guests earlier in the process.

If you're trying to avoid excess fees at Hyatt altogether, there's still a way. Those staying on a free night award will have resort fees waived. Meanwhile, top-tier Globalists will enjoy waived fees on paid and award stays alike. Let's just hope this doesn't go the way of Marriott, which has started “accidentally” adding award redemption fees for some guests who use points for hotel stays.

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