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Hotels use COVID-19 excuse to cut services: Botiques, Airbnb a Better Value

Excerpted:

Over the past several weeks I have stayed at several hotels across the spectrum from upscale resorts to roadside motels…

What I found is a great deal of inconsistency, even at hotels flagged under the same brand. It’s also obvious that some hotel owners and operators are using coronavirus to cut costs.

at the Vail Marriott Mountain Resort, where peak-ski season rates exceed $1,000 per night. I was among the first guests to stay at the hotel in Colorado’s famed Vail Valley when it reopened Friday.

The much-reduced staff worked hard, but the complete lack of any real services, including daily housekeeping or open restaurants, make staying here a lousy value at $237 or 60,000 Marriott Bonvoy points per night.

My experience at the super-charming Chamberlin Inn, near Yellowstone National Park in Cody, Wyoming, was completely different. The 21-room, family-owned hotel is fully open with no downgrades to service standards.

One of the winners this summer will undoubtedly be Airbnb, as the short-term rental of a vacation house or apartment is a better value than staying at a hotel-in-name-only. This is especially true at hotels with the audacity to charge a resort fee when they are providing nothing more than a bed to sleep.

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Supporting this topic—-“We have seen a faster recovery within alternative accommodations than in hotels,” Morgan Stanley analyst Brain Nowak wrote in a note last week

A couple of guests told me they joined Airbnb looking for whole home rentals where there were no common areas like elevators and enclosed lobbies. The perception is less potential exposure.

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It’s ironic because (pre-covidpocalypse) I have read so many times online people saying just the opposite, along the lines of (swallow your beverage before reading further): “I prefer hotels because you know they’re clean. They have standards. I don’t trust some random person’s cleaning standards.”

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Me too! I think this is part of what some of us are experiencing as an influx of new users. However, I tend to get new users in the summer anyway, but there does seem to be more than usual and definitely lots of reports from other hosts of more new users.

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These are the same people who eat at McDonalds and other chain restaurants because “you know what you’re going to get”. People like that aren’t ideal Airbnb guests anyway. I certainly don’t want them or need them.

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