Different areas will support different fees. Where I am in MN, even a few blocks away from me, providers charge way less (or teeny more, but I am in the higher range) for their weekly rates..and this includes my late fees.
I understand traffic can cause lateness, but parents need to understand, this is a business for us, and unlike the drycleaners or pet food store, we can not just close the doors at closing time and say no more customers. We still have your children. And likely, we also (especially at this time of year) have children or family obligations to attend... dance recitals or classes/rehearsals, church functions, college classes and tests of our own, and many other varied activities (things where other people are depending on us as well) ..many of which begin 15-30 minutes of our closing time...we have to deal with traffic or snowy roads as well. If you showed up at Target, past closing time, you would not even be able to pay a fee to still go in and grab your prescription or milk or shampoo.
The point, for me anyway, of the high late fees, and super obnoxious strictness of them, is not to punish you finacially, but to make you never ever want to be late, so for you to do every thing you can on your end to not show up at my door late. If you know there will be snowy or holiday type traffic, then I am sorry but you need to leave even earlier. If it happens once in a blue moon, I do excuse it...but if it happens more than once in a season...I do charge. I have a life too and after working 11 hours a day..plus set up, clean up and all the cleaning and laundry and shopping and activity planning I do on my weekend and evening hours... I want to be with my own family, or out doing my own errands. Even if I want to just be sitting at home in my PJs watching a DVD with my family...that is my time to do that with.
I am just trying to show the other side here. This is a business, albeit one that creates very personal relationships, but it is still a business. If the hours are this much of an issue, perhaps its just not a good fit, unfortunately.
I wish you luck!