Westgate Resorts is increasing its third-party commission rates to 12 percent during special timeframes in 2018, based on location, and pledged to keep its standard commission rate at 10 percent.
“We value the service independent meeting planners provide and will continue to reward it accordingly,” said Westgate Resorts Chief Business Officer Jared Saft.
Westgate Resorts operates 25 properties in the U.S., with more than 300,000 square feet of combined meeting space. Property locations range from the Las Vegas Strip to the Great Smoky Mountains and Central Florida.
Westgate Lakes Resort & Spa in Orlando, Fla., Westgate Park City Resort & Spa in Park City, Utah, Westgate River Ranch & Rodeo in River Ranch, Fla., and Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino have all recently completed work on new additions, renovations or upgrades to meeting and event space.
Commission Cuts: The Story So Far
Marriott International was the first major hotel chain to announce it was cutting independent planner commissions from 10 to 7 percent for all of its hotels in the U.S. and Canada. Hilton and IHG have since followed suit and announced they are reducing commissions from 10 to 7 percent at properties in the U.S. and Canada.
Disney Destinations confirmed that it would maintain its 10% commission rate at a May 2018 media event highlighting the company's group opportunities and MGM Resorts' Michael Dominguez publicly stated that the gaming and hospitality company has no plans to lower commission rates for third-party meeting planners.
Various boutique hotels and independent brands have stated they plan to maintain 10% commission rates for independent meeting and event planners who work on that payment model—versus a fee-based model—and some have even offered or continue to offer special promotions with higher commission rates.