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Casinos gamble on low room rates
Thursday, May 13, 2010 at 12:38:47 PM
Getting a bargain for a trip to Las Vegas, Atlantic City and other casino destinations is a safe bet these days.
Hotel rates in Las Vegas dropped 18% during 2009, from an average $103 to $85 a night, according to the latest Hotel Price Index from Hotels.com. New Jersey rates are down 15%, to $115 from $135. (In comparison, the average rate drop nationwide was 7%.) "You're finding four-star properties for $99 midweek," says Jeff Vasser, the president of the Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority.
Fewer travelers during the recession explains the bulk of the drop, but hotels face more competition, too, says Barbara Messing, the vice president for deal-tracking site Travel-Ticker.com. Las Vegas added 6,000 new rooms over the past six months, many of them in the recently opened City Center complex. Atlantic City, meanwhile, lost some traffic to new casinos in Pennsylvania.
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