Do Hotels Charge Per Person or Per Room?

Planning to book a hotel but have trouble understanding the price of the rooms? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Allow me to quickly address your query.

Most hotels primarily use the ‘per-room pricing strategy,’ where they charge per room. They usually price their rooms on the basis of double occupancy, where the rate remains the same whether you occupy the room alone or with a companion.

Guests per room are limited to two because of the limited amenities provided by the hotel.

In other words—a double occupancy room only considers the comfort of two guests.

If you intend to bring a third person along with you, you will be asked to pay an additional fee usually around the range of $20-$50(for every guest) as per the hotel’s star rating.

Thankfully, you don’t need to pay extra for children under 12 as they aren’t considered additional guests.

What Are the Different Pricing Models Hotels Use to Charge Their Guests?

Most decent hotels in the world usually use the ‘per-room pricing model’.

However, that is not to say that there aren’t other pricing models used by hotels to charge their guests.

For instance, there is the ‘occupancy-based pricing model’ too.

Occupancy-Based Pricing Model

This model, as its name suggests, follows a strategy where the rate of the rooms varies according to the number of guests occupying the room.

Such hotels usually categorize their rooms into single, double, triple, and quadruple occupancy.

In such hotels, the single occupancy rooms are the least expensive while the quadruple occupancy rooms cost the most.

Hotels that follow this type of pricing model usually ask guests how many companions they intend to bring along with them beforehand.

And, upon receiving the answer, the hotel allocates a room befitting the guest’s traveling party.

Such hotels are also quite flexible with their rates.

For instance, if a one-person room is unavailable for a single guest, they can allot a double occupancy room to the guest for a reduced rate.

Per-Person Pricing Model

There are some hotels that follow the per-person pricing model too, where they charge guests as half-board, full-board, and all-inclusive.

In this type of pricing model, guests are usually charged on the basis of services and room.

A half-board service includes accommodation with two meals per day.

The meals are prepared in a buffet setting with unlimited servings.

With the full board service, you can enjoy three meals per day during your stay.

The meals are also prepared in an ‘all you can eat’ buffet setup.

Last but not least, we have the all-inclusive package that allows guests to have all meals and beverages throughout the day.  

Why Do Hotels Care So Much if You Have Extra Companions?

There are three primary reasons hotels care so much if you have extra companions.

First and foremost, the hotels prioritize the comfort of the guest over anything else.

You see, most hotel rooms are only designed to accommodate two guests per room.

Any more in the room and you won’t be able to move freely.

This, in turn, can harm the reputation of the hotel as you will leave the premises somewhat unsatisfied.

Secondly, hotels, like any other business establishment, care about profits.

If they extend their services to many people for the price of one room, they are bound to lose out on potential revenue.

Additionally, they’ll have to supply additional amenities for the additional guests; so, their expenses will skyrocket.

For that reason, hotels are quite strict with you bringing in more guests than permitted. And, even if you do, there is an extra charge for every extra guest.

Finally, hotels care so much if you have extra companions for your own safety during emergencies.

All decent hotels have emergency plans in case of a disaster.

If they take in more people than their capacity, they won’t be able to execute their contingencies, thereby, putting their guests’ lives at risk.

The thing is—every building has a set egress capacity for exit routes.

With too many guests in the building, hotels run the risk of having those exit points clogged up by distressed guests, thereby, putting the safety of the guests at serious risk during emergencies.   


In conclusion, there isn’t a set pricing model used by hotels to charge their guests.

While some follow the ‘occupancy-based pricing model,’ where the rate of the rooms varies according to the number of guests occupying the room, others follow the ‘per-person pricing model,’ where the price of the rooms differs according to the services and amenities provided.

However, I will say this—most decent and premium hotels in the world follow the ‘per-room pricing strategy,’ where they charge per room.

And, the rate of these double occupancy rooms remains the same whether you occupy the room alone or with a companion.