Hotels See Opportunities in Guests Travelling with Pets
A bed-and-breakfast in New York City refused to allow a traveler’s 80-pound Labradoodle to trot around the main house.
B.L. Ochman, a Manhattan Internet strategist, decided to transfer lodgings and discovered Audrey’s Farmhouse, a Bed & Breakfast located in Wallkill. This B&B caters to guests with dogs and does not charge additional pet fees.
Hotels from small and major chains are capitalizing on travelers who bring their dogs. Some charge guests for pampering pet perks and other expanding fees. One-time pet fees have blossomed into per-night charges that cost pet owners a minimum of $100 per stay.
Some hotels offer pet amenities such as chew toys, designer bowls, grass patches for peeing and in-door massages for an additional price. Others charge guests with cleaning fees, whether their dog makes a mess or not.
“There is a huge difference between pet-tolerant and pet-welcoming,” said Carol Bryant, a pet industry public relations strategist from Forty Fort, Pennsylvania. Bryant has been travelling with dogs for decades and claims that hotels tolerating animals do not offer services such as beds and bowls. A guest’s dog ends up sleeping on thin carpeting.
According to her, additional pet perks cost more. She adds: “I never forget when businesses extend themselves to my dog. Does my dog know? Probably not, but I do. And I do the spending.”
Hotels charge various prices for pets. More than 120 DoubleTree by Hilton Hotels charge a maximum of $75 nonrefundable fees for cleaning. Numerous hotel chains charge differently, depending on the city. In San Francisco, flat fees are common. The Raddison charges $75. According to petswelcome.com, a pet traveling service website, the following hotels charge the following rates:
- Marriot – $50.00 to 100.00
- Holiday Inn – $ 75.00
- The Hyatt – $ 100.00
According to petswelcome.com’s marketing director Cindy Dahlen, many hotels have no pet fees. This includes Studio 6, Motel 6, La Quinta, Red Roof and Kimpton, which has 67 hotels nationwide. Properties that charge per night include the Rodeway Inn and Westin hotels at $10-$15; Extended Stay America at $25; Best Western and Travelodge at $20.
Other pet policies, which exclude service dogs, vary by hotel and can include the following:
- Rooms on designated floors, allowing other customers to avoid pet dander
- Restriction of dogs from destroying hotel property such as tables and furniture
- Dogs should regularly be leashed
- Where they can go on the property.
- Banning certain dog breeds; must be in line with the city’s policies
For Ochman, bed-and-breakfasts are better compared to hotels due to their fewer restrictions and charges for pets.
“People approach travel in different ways,” she said. “We are just looking for a pretty place where we can relax and take the dogs.”