Hotels charging higher rates for $100 gift cards

Only five guests benefited from "Go Providence Pass" Upgrade in The Beatrice so far.

Chris Pat and his wife had planned to celebrate their first wedding anniversary with a weekend trip to Providence. So when they learned about the state’s “Go Providence Pass” promotion, where guests who book a two-night stay at participating hotels will receive a $100 gift card to use at local businesses, they were stunned as an ideal way to explore the city.

But after checking into The Beatrice in late September, Pat called reception to ask where he should go to get the gift card. Receptionist told him he didn’t qualify: $100 gift cards are only for people who booked at a special promotional rate.

Surfing the Internet, Pat first realized that The Beatrice and other hotels participating in the promotion seemed to charge a higher price for a “Go Providence Pass” — up to $50 to $80 a night, he said. This sounded weird: Who would want to pay an extra $160 for a $100 gift card?

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