Reading and Leeds Festival fans are being forced by hotel chains to fork out almost £700 for accommodation if they don't camp onsite.

Each year, over 240,000 visitors to flock to the two festivals at Richfield Avenue in Reading and Bramham Park in Leeds – making both Reading and Leeds the biggest UK festival which is dedicated just to music. The gates to the festivals open at noon on Wednesday, August 21 for those with early bird passes and 3am on August 22 for those with general camping tickets.

But people who hold generic weekend tickets and decide they don't want to camp meaning they have to book external accommodation, with many choosing hotels in and around Leeds and Reading city centres.

This year, however, major chains including IHG which runs the Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express and the Crowne Plaza, as well as brands such as Accor, operating Novotel and the Ibis as well as the famous Hilton Hotel chain have more than doubled their prices for the weekend of the festival between August 23 and August 26.

The Holiday Inn Express Leeds City Centre is currently charging an eyewatering £593, while the Crowne Plaza in Leeds is charging £585. But the weekend after, the Holiday Inn Express is charging just £235, while the Crowne Plaza is fully booked. Speaking to the Mirror, a spokesperson for IHG Hotels & Resorts said: "IHG Hotels & Resorts operates a predominantly franchised business model, whereby franchised hotels are independently owned and operated by third parties. Our hotel owners set their pricing on a daily basis, in line with supply and demand."

Elsewhere, the Ibis Leeds Centre Marlborough Street which is known for its budget-friendly prices is charging a whopping £474, the Ibis Styles is charging £493 and the Novotel is charging prices of around £695. Just one week later and the Ibis Leeds Centre is charging guests a mere £163 for three nights. Meanwhile, in Reading, the Holiday Inn Reading South has prices of £614 for three nights.

Although the lavish Hilton Hotel brand is known for its luxury and upmarket prices, they're somewhat similar to the likes of the Ibis and Novotel. The Hilton Leeds City Centre has prices set at £599. It's more budget-friendly, DoubleTree by Hilton has rates starting at £501. Further south, the Hilton Reading is charging £729 for three nights. Elsewhere, the Hampton by Hilton in the West Yorkshire city has prices around £535, compared to £260 to stay at the Hilton the following weekend.

The line-up for the weekend includes the likes of headliners Fred again.., Lana Del Rey and Blink-182, plus, Liam Gallagher, Catfish and the Bottlemen and Gerry Cinnamon. Elsewhere, Flo, Bradley Simpson, ThxSoMch, Seb Lowe, Reneé Rapp, Only The Poets, Fontaines D.C., Denzel Curry, Pendulum, Neck Deep and Nia Archives will be taking to the various stages. Bosses at the festival this year have also announced a first-of-its-kind live stage for digital content creators, which will see Max Balegde and George Clarke on the bill at The Aux stage.

This year, bosses at the event have introduced a Quiet Campsite for free, so those who have previously decided not to camp have the option to stay onsite in a much more relaxed and peaceful environment. The Eco Campsite also has an agreement in place that those staying on that site leaves no trace of their presence once they leave the festival.

Tickets for Reading and Leeds, which is taking place between August 21 and August 25 are already on sale. Head to the official website if you're interested.

Accor and Hilton Hotels were approached for comment.

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2024-05-29T17:37:31Z dg43tfdfdgfd