Hotels Should Offer Internet Access For Free

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I’m staying in the Sheraton Premier for the next four days attending training from my company and I find it absolutely mind boggling that the Sheraton Premier charges $9.95 per day for internet access. Ten dollars for internet access, that’s quite a racket! Of course, most business hotel guests will be expensing this additional $10 to their company but I find it strange that the Sheraton, and many other hotels, don’t just roll the price into the cost of the room, which is likely to be high anyway, and just offer it as a complimentary service. I’ve stayed at dive hotels that have offered free wireless access because it’s a bit of a fake perk.

If a hotel doesn’t offer free wired or wireless access in the rooms, at the very least offer a terminal or two in the lobby or business center so people can just pop in and check their email (insecurely I might add) and not pop them for a few extra bucks. I found the business center here at the Sheraton and it’s an astonishing $2.49 connection charge plus 59 cents a minute!

{ 10 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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10 Responses to “Hotels Should Offer Internet Access For Free”

  1. FMF says:

    Ha! I’m staying at the “cheap” Hampton Inn and have free wireless (all for $89 a night!) 😉

  2. Chris says:

    I agree completely, it is terrible that they charge $10 per day to get internet access. However, I still have to use it when I travel on business and charge this through to the client. The hotel knows that I will pay for it because I need it to complete my job… damn them!

  3. Steve says:

    They charge because the service is typically provided at no cost to them by the local cable company.

    The cable company comes in and wires the place for free, then gives the hotel a small cut of each nights service sold in exchange for handling the billing and collection.

  4. CK says:

    Never ever ever use that terminal in the lobby for anything involving sensitive information or a password.
    Never never never. You’re asking for trouble.

  5. eROCK says:

    I’ve found the upper-end hotels/motels often supplement other goodies in place of free internet. For example, I stayed in Chicago last week at the Embassy Suites and paid $210. Sure it was expensive, and $10 a day for internet, but I recieved a cooked to order breakfast, free wall street journal, open bar from 5:30 – 7:30. Not much room to complain personally.

  6. Harry says:

    Why should any business offer anything for free? If you don’t like the price, don’t use it. If they roll it into the price of the room, then everybody is paying for it. Having it as an optional service makes only people who use it pay for it. I think it’s fair.

  7. Jonathan says:

    For me, it’s just part of the shopping process. If two similar hotels offer $100 rooms and one has free internet and the other doesn’t, guess which one I’m going to pick?

    But it’s also true that I would more likely become a frequent stayer of a hotel chain if all their hotels offered free hi-speed, like Holiday Inn Express.

  8. bloodbath says:

    I’ve stayed at a lesser expensive hotel where it’s wireless and free – Comfort Inn.

  9. echidnina says:

    I agree, with wi-fi being so ubiquitous these days, that it should be a complimentary service.

    On the other hand, I’m willing to pay for it (at a reasonable price) so long as it’s effective. I stayed at a hotel a few months ago that offered complimentary wireless, that worked for about 5 minutes and then disconnected you, and was on and off the entire time I stayed there. It was really frustrating, but I didn’t think it was worth it to complain since it was a free perk.

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