UPDATED: Paying for parking is now a thing for MGM Resorts properties. You'll find pay stations throughout the properties and near the parking garages. You'll also find plenty of parking spaces as it currently seems to be a good deterrent for visitors.
What was once a given in Las Vegas is soon going to be gone just like the iconic structures of the past on the Las Vegas strip. Make space at the Neon Boneyard because the free parking signs will need a new home. MGM Resorts International has just announced that they will begin charging guests to park their cars starting somewhere between April and June.
On January 15, 2016, MGM Resorts International followed the dollar and decided that changing the landscape of Las Vegas to pad the bottom line was a prudent move. On the surface you can see how this is a wise business decision. If you are seeking out a bit more revenue to help with diminishing gaming revenues grabbing a few extra dollars from your loyal customers would seem logical. You can expect to pay to park your car in an MGM Resorts parking lot if you are an overnight guest. Whether it is a smart move will eventually be known but when you consider how many people drive to Las Vegas from Southern California this could get real interesting.
While it is still a bit unclear what overnight means you can bet that if you stop into a nightclub, stay late and then a have late night meal there will be a parking surcharge when you exit the parking structure. Valet parking will be affected as well so those guys who once worked on tips will now be forced to park cars for very little extra compensation.
"Visitation to Las Vegas continues to grow as guests come to Las Vegas to experience all we have to offer from a leisure and business perspective," said Corey Sanders, MGM Resorts International Chief Operating Officer. “We don’t take this change lightly. We recognize this is a significant departure from a long-established paradigm in the Las Vegas market. However, after months of analysis, we believe these enhancements and new technology solutions will become welcome additions to our overall guest experience.”
Somehow MGM Resorts believes that visitors will be excited about paying $40 after a stay at their casino. The truth is the common refrain will be that visitors will attempt to visit others casinos but realistically if there is a golden egg on the table soon the rest of the strip casinos will follow suit. There is no confirmation on that happening yet but you can be sure that a watchful eye of some bean counter in a corporate office in Las Vegas will be counting every last cent to see if this will be the norm in Las Vegas.
Do you remember the resort fee fight a few years ago? Plenty of people screamed and kicked and some resorts decided against it. Soon the allure of more easy money became to great and the resort fee became a thing.
It’s a thing everywhere.
Head to Hawaii and try to park your rental car. Yes, that is a $15 - $25 dollar fee to park over night. Have you tried to park a car in San Francisco or New York hotel lately? Yes, the cost is absurd with prices as high as $45 in some spots.
In the midst of this announcement MGM also announced plans for the construction of a new 3000 space parking structure to serve the new T-Mobile Arena, The Park and the new Theater at Monte Carlo Casino. That should be ready in early 2017.
All hotels in the MGM Resorts family will be affected by this change including Aria, Vdara, Bellagio, Mandalay Bay, Excalibur, New York-New York, Monte Carlo, Mirage, MGM Grand and Circus Circus. It should be noted that Circus Circus will still have free parking but valet service will no longer be free.
What’s next, the end of free drinks in the casino?