- Caesars has announced that it will reintroduce parking fees for some of its guests from October 30.
- Locals, hotel guests, and Caesars Rewards loyalty members at the platinum rating and above won’t pay the fees.
- The company said it intends to improve the experience of its most valued customers through the policy.
- The policy has sparked mixed reactions among hospitality industry experts.
Some visitors will begin paying parking fees at six of Caesars Entertainment Inc.’s properties from October 30 onwards, the company announced on Wednesday.
Hotel guests, Nevada residents with valid identification, and Caesars Rewards loyalty members at the platinum rating and above will enjoy exclusion from the policy. The rest of the guests will pay self-parking fees at Caesars Palace, Bally’s, Paris Las Vegas, Flamingo, Harrah’s, and The Linq Hotel.
The company said it intends “to improve the overall guest experience” through the policy.
All guests will, however, continue enjoying free self-parking at Planet Hollywood and Miracle Mile Shops.
In the announcement, Caesars CEO Tom Reeg said that with the updated self-parking policy, the company intends to take care of its best customers “and provide them with ease and better access” to its Las Vegas properties.
Reeg added that Caesars will donate all revenue generated from the parking fees to “charitable organizations in the local community” and help its team members who have been affected by the pandemic.
The company will give parking fee profits to charitable groups that “support Caesars team members and local communities in need” until the end of the first financial quarter in 2021.
A Caesars spokeswoman said the company enacted the policy because of “limited availability of self-parking” for its customers. She didn’t reply to questions about the specific charitable groups, whether the fees will remain in place after early 2021, or whether the recent wave of violence on the Strip contributed to the decision.
It “could also be a move to increase security in the parking garages” due to the violence, said UNLV hospitality professor Amanda Belarmino. She expects that all properties will apply self-parking fees once they begin operating in full.
Belarmino said that one of the reasons for suspending the fees was that “guests had limited options on properties.” She added, “With capacity restrictions on restaurants and the gaming floor, it was logical for casinos to eliminate the parking fees because of potentially increased wait times and reduced amenities.”
It was good that Caesars chose to donate parking fee profits to charitable organizations, but Las Vegas businesses should focus on luring customers back and proving its value in competing with other travel destinations, said a gaming analyst.
A Global Market Advisors LLC partner, Brendan Bussmann, said it’s unfortunate that one of the extra fees removed during the coronavirus shutdown has come back soon when the industry is still trying to recover and attract more visitors to Las Vegas.
LaunchVegas LLC consulting group founder Nehme Abouzeid said several factors could have influenced the decision, including keeping locals happy with free parking and incentivizing loyalty by making parking part of a Caesars Rewards package.