Encore dispenses with self-parking fees

With casino traffic manageable, hefty charges eliminated

ENCORE BOSTON HARBOR is now letting its customers self-park for free at the Everett casino, dispensing with the hefty charges that had been in place since its June opening — $22 for the first six hours and $42 for up to 24 hours.

In a statement, Encore Boston Harbor President Robert DeSalvio characterized the introduction of free self-parking as a new amenity for guests, but the move also suggests the casino found the fees were discouraging guests from coming to the facility.

Five years ago, when Wynn Resorts was seeking its Massachusetts casino license, traffic was one of the biggest concerns. Casino officials at the time indicated they would do everything they could – including implementing parking fees – to encourage guests to visit the facility without driving. But since the opening of Encore Boston Harbor traffic has not been a problem.

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Bruce Mohl

Editor, CommonWealth

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

The casino experimented with doing away with self-parking fees at the beginning of August, and decided to dispense with them entirely as of Friday. A spokeswoman said the feedback the casino received after the initial test was “overwhelmingly positive.”

Casinos in Las Vegas began moving to self-parking charges several years ago to boost revenues, but the two Wynn Resorts properties in Vegas reversed course and dispensed with the fees in May.

Encore Boston Harbor has approximately 2,900 parking spaces at its Everett hotel and casino.