Several Caesars properties in Las Vegas are no longer offering free parking to out-of-state guests. Caesars Entertainment announced this week that the Linq Hotel has officially begun charging visitors to self-park their cars, and tolls will commence at Caesars Palace and Paris Las Vegas next week on April 6.
Las Vegas might be adjacent to Paradise, Nevada, but the lyrics to the Joni Mitchell song “Big Yellow Taxi” are coming true in Sin City. “They paved paradise, and put up a parking lot,” perfectly summarizes a growing trend in the gambling mecca of casino operators charging guests just to arrive at their resorts.
Linq visitors will be forced to pay $8 a night for self-parking. Caesars Palace, Paris Las Vegas, and Bally’s will charge $10 per 24 hours. Valet rates at Caesars Palace, Bally’s, Paris, Planet Hollywood and The Cromwell are a flat $18.
Caesars says its decision to charge for parking isn’t a money grab, but in response to its rewards members voicing frustrations over finding a parking spot. The company suspects many Vegas visitors were parking in their free lots, only to walk to other non-Caesars properties.
Though Nevada residents can avoid the fees at Caesars by simply scanning the back of their driver’s license, locals are still none too happy about the continued implementation of parking charges.
Caesars is the third Vegas casino company to roll out parking tolls. MGM Resorts, the largest gambling company in Nevada, started the trend in January of 2016 when it announced 11 of its properties would no longer provide free parking.
The fees began in June, and while locals were granted immunity at the MGM resorts for the first six months, the company began charging even Nevada residents last December. Wynn Resorts is another company that charges for parking, though only for valet service.
“What happens when friends and relatives come into town and stay at MGM properties?” Las Vegas local Liz Hannigan asked Casino.org when the program debuted. “No one local will meet them at these casinos because of these ridiculous parking fees.”
MGM National Harbor, the company’s newest resort located outside of Washington, DC, currently offers free self-parking. However, the resort says it will move to a paid parking model in the future.
Visitors Mad, Too
Non-locals are also rather furious to learn their trips to Sin City are getting more expensive. Angered guests are voicing their frustrations that they’re already paying resort fees, which should cover parking expenses.
Hotel occupancy tax rates are also going up in Clark County to pay for the state’s $750 million commitment to building the future home of the NFL Raiders. Construction will soon commence on the professional football team’s $1.9 billion stadium after the league’s owners approved the relocation from Oakland earlier this week.
Government officials, and now casino companies, seem to be toying with its most valuable asset: tourists. Whether the parking fees, which pale in comparison to those in other big cities, will deter guests remains to be seen.