What annoys you the most about your hotel? Survey says …

Uncomfortable beds, says a new survey by D.K. Shifflet & Associates. But that’s not the real story. Three out of the top five annoyances had to do with extra charges — fees that properties could easily eliminate.

If they wanted to.

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Coming in a close second is “charging for Internet access” followed by “hidden fees at checkout” and “charging for parking.”

The results of this study are based on a national online survey of 523 guests who stayed in a hotel in the past three months. Respondents were asked to rate their annoyance with each event using a five point scale: (5) extremely annoying, (4) very annoying, (3) somewhat annoying, (2) slightly annoying, (1) not annoying.

Chris Klauda, DKSA’s vice president of lodging, said hoteliers should pay attention to the results.

Hotel owners should carefully consider the impact a decision to charge for extras might have on guest retention. Following the policy started by airlines of charging for additional services is a risky proposition.

Additional fees could result in lost revenue as guests seek out “no additional fee” hotels for future stays. Hoteliers might consider wrapping all fees into the room rate and making an extra effort to promote the value of services included.

Truer words were never spoken.

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