In June, George Mason professor Todd Zywicki testified before the Senate Commerce Committee’s Consumer Protection Subcommittee on junk fees. Professor Zywicki explained:
I share the frustration that many consumers hold today regarding the proliferation of seemingly ubiquitous add-on fees that we experience constantly, from surcharges for using our credit cards at a merchant, to hotel “resort fees,” and others. And earlier this year I experienced exactly this frustration when I checked into a hotel on vacation and was assessed a mandatory $30 a day “resort fee” that was only disclosed in fine print on the last screen of a multi-page checkout process at an Internet hotel booking website. Buying a ticket to concert has in fact become a tedious process of searching for a concert or sports ticket and then having to spend 10 minutes clicking through multiple pages before you can discover the real price and decide whether to go to the show.
So I also say, “Enough.”
During his oral testimony, Professor Zywicki reported that he took out his credit card to pay the resort fee.
Professor Zywicki’s testimony is more nuanced than that brief excerpt suggests. If you want a more complete understanding of his views, I suggest you read his testimony.